Based on the Bram Stoker Award nominee short story by cult author Joe R. Lansdale, Bubba Ho-tep tells the "true" story of what really did become of Elvis Presley. We find Elvis (Bruce ...
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Based on the Bram Stoker Award nominee short story by cult author Joe R. Lansdale, Bubba Ho-tep tells the "true" story of what really did become of Elvis Presley. We find Elvis (Bruce Campbell) as an elderly resident in an East Texas rest home, who switched identities with an Elvis impersonator years before his "death", then missed his chance to switch back. Elvis teams up with Jack (Ossie Davis), a fellow nursing home resident who thinks that he is actually President John F. Kennedy, and the two valiant old codgers sally forth to battle an evil Egyptian entity who has chosen their long-term care facility as his happy hunting grounds.Written by
Don Coscarelli originally wanted a dual narration, with part of the story being narrated by an omniscient third person, not just an Elvis narration. He had recorded another voice narrating the action as it came from the short story it was based upon, but this was abandoned after his friends told him it was terrible. Some of this narration can be heard on the DVD's deleted scenes. See more »
There are no mountains (as seen in the Nacogdoches fair scene and Mud Creek) in East Texas. See more »
I must confess I had reservations prior to seeing this film. I thought it would be some God-awfully childish film laden with sophomoric jokes, cheesy effects, and inane dialogue. Some of those elements do surface, but this film was a genuine pleasure to sit through. Imagine if you can that Elvis, the King of Rock and Roll, switched places with an Elvis impersonator and now lives a sad, lost life in a small, run-down nursing home in East Texas. Add to the mix Ozzie Davis as a man convinced he is John F. Kennedy and a mummy that sucks the souls of geriatric residents and you have the basic premise behind Bubba Ho-tep. But beyond all that and the jokes about Elvis's genitalia and other low brow references is a film with a tremendous amount of heart and a message about the elderly in our society and how we have, as a society, betrayed them and cast them aside. The script and effective direction of Phantasm's Don Coscarelli make this film work on several levels. It is a comedy. It is a drama. It is a horror film. It has all those elements. You care about the characters and are drawn into this seedy little world. The biggest asset the film has is its performances. Davis gives a fine turn and adds credibility to the film, but Bruce Campbell as the king just bowled me over. I had seen him before, but I had never seen him act like this before. You soon forget Campbell is acting and think Elvis is really there - now 68 and destitute. Campbell's inflection, mannerisms, and poise melt and fuse wonderfully into Elvis. This was one of the very pleasant surprises that come along every so often.
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