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Choice Indie Film: Bubba Ho-Tep

Published June 2, 2004 in DVD REVIEW
By Ryan Parsons | Campus Resource, Joblo

To discuss this indie film, it is hard to know where to start. Is it the very unique plot, the classic one-liners from Bruce Campbell, the strange cinematography, or the weird ending? It's been a couple days since I've seen the film and I still do not know what to make of it.

The Plot Thickens
We are introduced to Elvis Presley [Bruce Campbell] in a rest home during present day. An yes, he really is Elvis Presley; or, at least has a story believable enough to not think otherwise. He has friends such as JFK [Ossie Davis]. JFK, however, is now black after mind surgeries and skin dye because of what he calls CIA conspiracy to hide his identity.

JFK discovers that there is a soul-sucking mummy who must such souls through peoples butt-holes to stay alive. Hence, this mummy, Bubba Ho-Tep, stalks rest homes for easy prey. JFK and Elvis team up to take this mummy down.

Why Like this Film
This movie is a true indie film. With a low budget, the film had to rely on its characters and script over its semi-cheesy special effects. Bruce Campbell, a cult film legend from movies such as Army of Darkness, does an excellent job playing an Elvis who is out of his prime and nearly bed-ridden. Nevermind the fact that he also has a pussing tumor on his penis to boot.

The story is as original as they come and takes its risks through its heroes, Elvis and JFK. The accompanying music is well done but limited. Many scenes just repeat the same track in order setup the mood for each one. The idea of the film, however, is where it finds most of its strength.

Elvis and JFK Walk Into a Bar...
Before I start, the entire movie is one punch line. The film plays continuously on this idea. The humor behind 'Bubba Ho-Tep' relies more on the story and the situations that it attempts to place its characters in. You would never in your life imagine to see Elvis fighting a cowboy mummy with a 'walker.' The best scene that sums up the entire movie is when Elvis and JFK go into 'costume.' The end result is a scene that is created to show the heroes walking to battle but instead shows Elvis limping with the assistance of his walker and JFK in a slow moving wheel chair. Classic.

A Cannes Film
As I previously stated, I still do not know what to think of this film. If you are a fan of independent films than you will probably right at home with 'Bubba Ho-Tep.' A film that has certified its place as a classic B movie.

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Ryan Parsons
Sources: Campus Resource, Joblo
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