Don't get me wrong, I liked parts of Elvira's latest movie, and it really does deliver as a tribute send up to the Roger Corman flavor of Poe done by Vincent Price in the 60's... but -- A pairing of Riff Raff and Elvira should've been better than this. Sure maybe Richard O'Brien can't pull from his "Rocky Horror" copyrighted repertoire and Elvira's titillating sight gag can only go so far, but you'd think that when the bent minds of roguish cult film freaks like these two got together, we'd get something really deviant and special to devour.
Sadly, "Elvira's Haunted Hills", the new 90 minute feature, which is being released as a Midnight Movie, plays more like something made for rainy Saturday afternoon TV. It's like watching Benny Hill for the horror movie scene. Maybe I wasn't sure what to expect. I mean, who is this Elvira character? Like the Crypt Keeper but with cleavage? What do I know beyond her sultry looks and her well advertised Haunted Hills?
In this movie, Elvira has evolved her persona into a fast talking wise cracker with one liners laden with cheesy innuendo all along the way. She's an Hollywood film diva and she knows it. And she's on her way to Paris with her overweight handmaiden to star in the new show revue singing the Yes I Can Can. Which as another shock, appears as the only musical number in the film. Just one? Awwww....
And at times Elvira's schtick works. There are parts of these Hills that are really funny. Her scenes with the Stable Stud and his overdubbed accent hits the stupid but it works kind of comedy target that the rest of the movie is aiming for. But Richard O Brien is truly a disappointment as Lord Vladiemere Hellsubus the morose lord of the castle. You keep hoping for him to fulfill his potential and let loose his electric weirdness brewing inside, but the moment never arrives.
This film is corny fun, with enough bad parts that makes cult movies enjoyable. Its camp and it knows it, it even has cartoon sound effects that accentuate the action and there are frequent balloon squeaking sounds let you know when Elvira is center stage. But as a cult movie fan I was expecting something a little more wild and weirder from these legends of cult movies.
An E for effort and I've got my fingers crossed for maybe something like the "Moulin Rouge" of camp horror from these guys next time.
For Movie Magazine this is Purple.
© 2002 - Purple - Air Date: 8/21/02
Elvira's Haunted Hills
USA - 2001