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OK, I just wrote up a Fango Flashback on SANTA’S SLAY, which I jokingly called the best Yuletide horror film ever. (I actually like it, but it isn’t even in the same category as GREMLINS or Bob Clark’s BLACK CHRISTMAS.) So what’s the worst Yuletide horror film? Or, better stated, the best worst Yuletide horror flick? Nope, it ain’t the BLACK CHRISTMAS remake, JACK FROST (not the Michael Keaton flick) or DON’T OPEN TILL CHRISTMAS. In my humble opinion, the answer is obvious: ELVES. It’s a 1989 low-/no-budget Christmas flick that has a chain-smoking Grizzly Adams, only one elf (what a misleading title!), Nazis, a cat being drowned in a toilet, an Elf-virgin-sex-Antichrist storyline and a coke-sniffing, lecherous department store Santa being knifed in the crotch by the titular Elves...I mean, Elf. Did I mention Nazis? Like PLAN 9 FROM OUTER SPACE and TROLL 2, ELVES needs to be seen to be believed.
OK, let’s get things straight from the get-go: ELVES has one of the most ridiculous plots ever, an awful script, worse acting, woeful production values, terrible pacing and only one friggin’ elf that looks like something a fourth grader made in arts-and-craft class. The embarrassing (and inarticulate) elf is only seen in the film for about three minutes, and never in its entirety. The title promises lots of Santa’s little helpers, but if you’re looking for elves (or even a good look at one elf), then you’d be better off renting that Will Ferrell movie, because you’re going to be disappointed with the creature count (and FX) in this film. Now here’s the fun part, folks: Describing the story. Try to stick with me, because even I don’t full understand the ludicrous goings-on. All I know is that when there’s no more room in hell, elves will rule the Earth. Seriously. It’s that kind of movie. ELVES begins with Kirsten (Julie Austin) and her gal pals performing some sort of anti-Christmas ceremony in the forest. After Kirsten cuts her hand, drawing blood, and they leave, an elf hand emerges from the ground. Kirsten is the movie’s heroine, and the poor girl comes from a very strange family: her oddball, evil stepmother drowns the cat in the toilet and can’t put on lipstick straight; her little brother gets his jollies by watching Kirsten toweling off and commenting on her nice rack; and her grandpa was a Nazi (more on that later).
As for Dan Haggerty, Grizzly Adams himself, he plays Mike McGavin, a chain-smoking (think Robert Mitchum and Kirk Douglas in OUT OF THE PAST times 10!), recovering alcoholic ex-cop who gets a job as a department store Santa after his aforementioned predecessor is killed by the elf. Seems Mike has seen better days and has nowhere to stay, so he secretly shacks up at the store, which is where Kirsten and her girl friends are also hanging out after hours in order to party with some dudes. That’s when the men-in-black Nazis and elf show up and kill off Kirsten’s BFFs. Why? OK, here’s where the really outrageous stuff gets rolling.
The Nazis believe that if the Elf mates with a virgin (Kirsten is ”untouched”; ogled by her brother and molested by the late-department store Santa, but still “pure”) at midnight on Christmas Eve, this will lead to the creation of either the perfect race, the Antichrist or Armageddon (or maybe all three). Following this? Me, either. The preposterous plot also includes incest, wheelchair-bound Grandpa’s Nazi scientist past and change of heart, an elfstone and the titular elves...I mean elf wanting to bone Kirsten throughout the picture and willing to kill anyone who stands in his way.Like I said, this movie needs to be seen to be believed. It’s one of those experiences where you need to round up a group of friends during the holiday season, buy some pizza and beer and relish and revel in ELVES’ senseless, idiotic and delightfully ridiculous rubbish. Just don’t go into it expecting elves. It’s that kind of movie.
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