creature feature

Shaun vs. Elves (1989)


Directed by Jeffrey Mandel

Starring Dan “Grizzly Adams” Haggerty, Julie Austin and Borah Silver

A young woman becomes an unwilling part in a Neo-Nazi scheme to conquer the world with a master race of elf-like creatures and only Grizzly Adams and her ex-Nazi grandfather can save her.  Who. Wrote. This. SHIT?


Kirsten and her friends go out into the woods to do some weird anti-Christmas ritual but Kirsten winds up cutting herself on some broken glass and decides that this is stupid and they all leave.  Her blood manages to stir something underneath the ground and a creepy hand comes out of the ground.  Whatever’s buried under there is only buried a few inches deep apparently.  Some creature (with terribly blurry vision if the POV shots are anything to go by) comes out of the ground and follows her home.

Arriving later than usual, Kirsten is caught putting the book she was using for the ritual back on her grandfather’s book shelf.  He gives her shit about it but lets her off until she runs into her mother whose idea of punishment for would-be witchcraft is to…close her bank account and keep the money?  That sounds a bit excessive.  The creature arrives at the house and attacks Kirsten’s brother but gets scared off before he can do any damage.  Despite his description of a “ninja gremlin,” their mother thought it was the cat and later drowns it in the toilet.  She’s more evil than this elf creature I’m still waiting to see.   


This is how Dan looks throughout the movie. Sadness with a hint of confusion.

Meanwhile, an ex-cop named Mike (Haggerty) is in a bad spot.  He lost his job due to alcoholism and got locked out of his trailer home, he takes a job as a mall Santa after the other Santa got stabbed to death by the elf.  I’m assuming he got killed for being a terrible Santa.  It just so happens that Kirsten works in the mall as well so I would bet they’ll meet up in about five minutes.

Elsewhere, Kirsten’s grandfather has a couple of visitors where we learn that he used to be a nazi who, along with these guys, worked on a project to create a master race…a mixed race of half human, half elf creatures.  Are you fucking kidding me? 


Her reaction to being asked to have sex with the elf puppet.

I know the whole idea of Hitler being involved in the occult isn’t real but it’s a fun idea to toy with to make one of the vilest people known to man even more evil, but this plot is just too awful.  Someone funded this shit!  People agreed to be in this movie, Grizzly Adams needed a paycheck! 

That isn’t even the worst of it!  In order to preserve this master race, along with calling on magic elves, there was a lot of inbreeding done and the grandfather is actually Kirsten’s father who was keeping the bloodline “pure” so when the elves show up, they have to impregnate her in order to perfect the master race. 


Boom chicka wa wa!

And that elf…the one thing I’ll say I like about it is that it looks fine when not moving.  But the animatronics are so basic, it hardly moves and when it does, it’s not too natural.  It’s hilarious to watch in motion when it’s not hiding in the dark.  The arms and hands barely move, the one scene where they pretend like it’s walking is hilarious and even the animatronic head barely moves.  Honestly, the blurry POV shots were probably the best way to go if that’s the best the filmmakers could come up with.

There’s no way that this is what the nazis had planned on as a ”master race”, it’s too ridiculous.  Even Haggerty acts like he’s in a shit fest most of the time, he’s reacting more to the shit he has to go through instead of acting out like he’s fighting a nazi elf demon. 

This movie is called “Elves” but it’s a misnomer because there’s only one damn elf!  We have just the one running around, and I know the “plot” goes on to explain that there COULD be elves after this one gets his groove on with Kirsten, but I guess calling it “Elf” just wasn’t scary enough.  They didn’t even get one right, why would I want more?


Will Ferrell in tight pants is scary, right?


Story:  2 – Nazies inbred for years in order to breed with magical creatures to create a new race to control the world!!!

Blood: 4 – The elf has claws and teeth but prefers to use an old fashioned knife.  The Santa that gets killed gets stabbed multiple times in the crotch.  It even kills the evil mother with the old “toaster in the bathtub” routine.  There are a few gunshot wounds thrown in as well.

Nudity: 4 – We see the evil mother naked in the bathtub with the toaster, considering she’s in her fifties, she doesn’t look too bad.

Overall: 1 – Absolutely a terrible movie with an absurd plot that no one takes seriously, not even the “name” actor can take his evil elf foe seriously and I’m assuming that’s what he was paid for.  


In a true sign of not giving a shit, even though the elf is killed (spoiler!) before doing the nasty with Kirsten, the film ends with the audience seeing a fetus that looks remarkably like a stupid elf!  Thankfully Elves 2 does not exist.

The movie was shot entirely in Colorado, but looong before they passed a bill legalizing wacky tabacky.  Otherwise I could’ve come up with a decent explanation for the plot.

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