It’s not like the Leprechaun was a horror icon in the ilk of Freddy Krueger or Jason Voorhees, but one of the aspects of his movie that made them somewhat bearable was Warwick Davis. His personality and good humor shone through the crap that was the “Leprechaun” series. In one fell swoop WWE Films, and Lionsgate take the entire series and completely sap out the life, appeal, and dark comedy in favor of a really stock monster movie where absolutely nothing happens. All of the lore and mythos that the original series tried to implant with their small monster is gone and we’re given a very dull and lifeless horror film.
For reasons I can’t quite fathom, the leprechaun is no longer the cackling, stalking, and ghoulish little beast. He’s now just a feral dwarf who growls like a dog, scampers through fields at lightning fast speeds, and is barely shown on screen at all. When we do see the leprechaun stalking his prey, director Zach Lipovsky has the bright idea to give the monster predator vision. I assumed at first this stock monster was just a hunter for the real Leprechaun, but oddly enough he never really appeared. Why the writers thought taking the charismatic villain from the original films and just reducing him to a walking prop for near endless chase sequences and badly altered special effects, is beyond me. I know Warwick Davis has no desire to be the Leprechaun anymore, but casting an equally charismatic dwarf actor for the role would have sufficed.
Is this just a tactic to be more politically correct? Wouldn’t WWE being politically correct be contradictory or hypocritical? In either case, there’s just nothing to this villain anymore, and there’s zero explanation as to why it wants gold, other than the fact that it’s a leprechaun. It’s small, it’s ancient, and it has a knack for liking gold so you can’t argue that it’s not a leprechaun, can you? And there’s absolutely no origin present. It’s just a feral beast running around the woods stalking people that try to steal its gold. There’s absolutely no back story, save for some brief moments of exposition about cliché Irish folklore about leprechauns.
You know a movie has failed on every aspect, when it casts two gorgeous women that strip down to their underwear, and it barely musters a shrug. In either case, four young backpackers of interchangeable personalities are traveling through Ireland and are shockingly convinced by a local to stay overnight in a local cabin. When they’re attacked by the monstrous leprechaun, they realize they’ve been locked inside and are being used as sacrifices. From there it’s your standard horror movie nonsense. The women scream and run, the men butch up and run, there’s more running, and the eventual showdown. “Leprechaun Origins” garners neither a leprechaun nor an origin. It’s barely a movie. I’m not going to pretend the original movies were classics, but they definitely won’t lull you to sleep like “Origins.”