Director: Justin Price
Cast: Natassia Halabi, Gabriel Miller, Lassiter Holmes
Production Company: Pikchure Zero Entertainment
Runtime: 90 minutes
You better watch out! You might just die. Better not doubt. I’m telling you why. The Elf (2017) is coming to town. Director Justin Price of Forsaken (2016), Snare (2016), and The Cloth (2013) has brought us all a holiday treat.
In the movie, Nick (Gabriel Miller) is troubled by night terrors caused by a traumatic event from his childhood. He inherits a toy shop and soon discovers an ancient chest with a cursed elf doll inside it. Once loose, the elf goes on a supernatural killing spree.
This film shares a lot of the same cast and crew from The 13th Friday (2017). Justin Price directed both of these movies. Returning cast members include Lisa May from Dark Moon Rising (2015), Vivian Ozuna and Joseph Daniel Ellis.
The Elf may remind you of the Zuni fetish doll from Trilogy of Terror (1975). Both are enchanted dolls that come with a warning and their own weapon. The scene where the Elf cuts its way out of a wrapped present is clearly a tribute to the Zuni Warrior. There are other similarities too, but you can have fun discovering those on your own.
A scene involving the fate of a group of carollers was one of my favourite moments in the film. It was pretty funny, and also served to set the final act into motion. It certainly helped raise the movie’s death count by a significant margin!
The group dynamics in the film are also notable. Nick’s girlfriend Victoria (Natassia Halabi) wants him to meet her family over the holidays. Each of them has an important part to play, and some are a little more sinister than they first appear.
The digital effects used to bring the doll to life are quite good. The Elf moves very naturally when it must, passing for a regular doll the rest of the time. The doll’s ability to be both childish and creepy at the same time reminded me of Chucky.
You’ll want to give this movie a shot, especially if you love other holiday-themed creature films like Krampus (2015), The Gingerdead Man (2005) or Jack Frost (1997). So take The Elf off the shelf, and watch it for goodness sake!
– John Migliore
For more information on the film, check out the links below…