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Bubba Ho-Tep Review

(posted in blog)

Bubba Ho-Tep is one of those movies that I bought immediately, sight unseen, as soon as I discovered that it existed, based solely on its premise and my man-crush on Bruce Campbell. I will now attempt to do justice to said premise.

At some point during the height of his career, Elvis Presley (Bruce Campbell) grew tired of the spotlight and switched places with Elvis impersonator Sebastian Haff (Bruce Campbell). The Elvis who we all believe died in 1977 was actually the impersonator, the real Elvis being still alive and well and impersonating the Elvis impersonator.

It’s now decades later and Elvis is living in a nursing home where he and Jack (Ossie Davis)–a black man who claims to be President John F. Kennedy, having been dyed black and abandoned by Lyndon Johnson after a failed assassination attempt–discover that an ancient Egyptian mummy who dresses like a cowboy is killing and consuming the life essence of their fellow residents.

Elvis and JFK are forced to use their wits, walkers, and wheelchairs to do battle with the evil spirit and save the nursing home.

I mean, I should be able to just end the review here. You’re either the type of person who reads that and recognizes pure brilliance when you see it, or you’re the type who reads that and then closes their web browser and forgets about it while listening to Nickleback or Cold Play and thinking about the next episode of The Kardashians and wondering when are they going to make a Real Housewives series based on your town and how do you sign up for auditions.

Despite the comedic premise, Bubba Ho-Tep actually has a lot to say about getting older, facing your regrets, and the way we treat the elderly. Bruce Campbell gives what I consider to be one of his best performances ever, and Ossie Davis is absolutely brilliant. I can’t stress enough how much I love this movie.

The Blu-ray itself is a very satisfying release, with no less than three commentary tracks, including one with Bruce Campbell in-character as “The King” asking questions like is this movie that’s supposed to be about him actually a porno, munching on snacks, and taking random calls on his cell phone. There aren’t many movies that I’d be willing to watch four times back-to-back with different audio tracks, but that’s what I did with Bubba Ho-Tep and appreciated every minute of it.

After the closing credits, we are teased with a supposed upcoming sequel, Bubba Nosferatu: Curse of the She-Vampires which doesn’t actually exist. A brief search seems to indicate that the film’s director Don Coscarelli really wanted (or wants) to make this sequel, but Bruce Campbell is not on board. Personally I’m happy with Bubba Ho-Tep living on its own as a perfect little gem of a film.

If you disagree with my opinion, then I suggest you follow the advice of this movie’s villain:

Eat the dog dick of Anubis you ass wipe!

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