Wednesday 26 December 2018

Movie Review: LEPRECHAUN RETURNS (2018)

Leprechaun Returns

Words cannot truly express the level of euphoria I experienced when I heard that there was a brand new Leprechaun movie, and one that's true to the style of the original. 2014's Leprechaun: Origins was a horrific misfire, and failed because it had virtually nothing in common with the previous six movies, and tried to take itself way too seriously. Leprechaun movies used to have a wicked sense of fun and silliness, mixed in with elements of Horror, which was at the heart of their appeal. Admittedly, they perhaps went a little far with Leprechaun 4: In Space, but in fairness, it was kinda awesome!

Leprechaun Returns disregards all of the previous movies bar the first, and is a direct sequel to the 1993 debut. Sadly, Warwick Davis hasn't returned to the role, but the new guy Linden Porco has proven to be a fantastic replacement, capturing the Leprechaun's malevolent charm and magic that Warwick originally brought to the table.

It's no surprise that Jennifer Aniston, who has publicly said that she's embarrased of her involvement in the first movie, hasn't come back for this sequel either. How could someone be embarrased about being in the Leprechaun? She should be more ashamed of being in that lame-ass sitcom Friends! Anyway, fuck Jennifer. At least Mark Holton is back as Ozzie!

Set 25 years after the original, the Leprechaun is still trapped down the well, and the adjacent property is now owned by the AU sorority house of a premier eco-science college. Some students decide to spend their summer vacation there, and make the house eco-friendly so they can enjoy some 'green living'. Basically, it's a way to provide the Leprechaun with student-aged victims, and generally make fun of millenials.

When setting up the house to go 'off-grid' and become self-sufficient, the students mess with the well in order to get fresh water pumped into the property. This is the same well where we left the Leprechaun at the end of the first movie, and they unwittingly release him. Weakened by his current lack of gold, the Leprechaun goes on the hunt for his treasure, and of course, this involves the expected killing spree.

Leprechaun Returns is an excellent comeback movie, retaining the elements that made me love the franchise in the first place. It benefits from the modern lick of paint, from the excellent cinematography to the cutting-edge special effects. It looks like it was shot on a bigger budget than its predecessors, although that may not actually be the case. There are present-day quirks in the writing, such as certain characters taking selfies with the Leprechaun, and a satirical look at young eco-warriors, but the heart of the writing is very much 'Old School'.

The movie is packed with witty dialogue, comedy, and most importantly some awesome death scenes. There's gore-a-plenty, as Leprechaun Returns ticks every box, and often manages to exceed expectations. As a long-term fan, I was delighted and very much hope that  there are more Leprechaun movies in the pipeline.


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