Haunted House Elf
Directed by ???
Haunted House Elf is what the title of this film translate to. There are little to no records of this hardly anywhere, especially records in English. Whoever did the subtitles decided that the vampires would be called “The Living Dead” He also decided that checking spelling was for pussies and that he was a real man. I’m here to tell you this guy is no real man and probably couldn’t spell “man” correctly if it was tattooed on his hand, much less any other word.
There was a period of time where tons of hopping vampire flicks popped up in the shadow of the Mr. Vampire films. Because hopping vampires are wacky, kids loved them, and it was inevitable that hopping vampire kid movies appeared. There was a ton of them at one point, you couldn’t shake a magic paper tract without it hitting the forehead of some hopping vampire kid. Then, like most fads, it quickly died and was replaced with Pokemon or something. Hmph…kids.
We got dancing plastic skeletons, glowy special effects, goofy giant snake statue, this movie rules!! And it’s only the opening credits. The opening credits that seem to be a highlight reel for the rest of the film. Hmmm…. Okay, review over, let’s go home! Just kidding, we’re gonna review this mug!
Shiao-Chiang is a poor kid who spends his time being maladjusted and harassing other kids who then shun him on order by their parents as his mother is dead and father Huang is a drunk. Take that, Shaio-Chiang! Teach you to have unavoidable tragedies happen in your life!
Suddenly this movie took a disturbing twist…
Shiao-Chiang’s dad Huang gets new job renovating the haunted house for a family fleeing the Hong Kong 1997 Chinese takeover. He celebrates by getting drunk. The family has daughter – Shiao-Ming – and younger son Shiao-Tai, who is a giant brat. The bratty son and scaredy daughter look around a creepy room and find some magic book, then bratty son yells at Shiao-Chiang for no reason except to be a jerk. But Shiao-Chiang wants to show them a secret – the cellar storage room! Then he murders them…no, wait, nothing like that happens. Shiao-Chiang tells us the previous family used to keep “dwone” down there, whatever dwone is, that’s one subtitle puzzle that I can’t solve. Maybe dwone means “The One”, and the previous family kept Neo in their basement!
There is a room with a metal door that has weird sounds coming from the other side. Now everyone is friends and will find out what the mystery sounds are, and they won’t tell any stinking adults. Adults ruin everything. At night, Lee Chung-chiang tries to communicate to the vampires via meditation, as the magic book tells him to do that.
The next day downstairs we see a wall made of iron with those red-lettered tracts taped to it. The kids will communicate with the vampires to see if they know how to break out of the door. Meanwhile, Huang the handyman and Mrs. Lee the house owner are beginning to get a little too close for their own good considering she’s married
The three kids get a dream message from a vampire on where to get a magic key to set them free. Hey, I’m a poet and don’t know it! They get the glowy Golden Key (complete with rainbow effects! w00t!) The three kids make so much noise opening the magic door that night that their mom gets suspicious and grabs her shotgun. Vampire kid telepaths them to take the charms off of the coffins they are trapped in. Don’t do it kids, you don’t know who is in those coffins! It could be hopping vampires!
Out pops Tong-Tong, kid hopping vampire! Don’t be afraid, I’m just an abomination against nature!
Mom’s coming, so the kids have to hide. Tong-Tong touches his nose and they all vanish except Lee Chung-chiang. Ha, ha, no one likes you Lee Chung-chiang! Mom just shoots her gun repeatedly into the room without being able to see anything, very reckless because she knows her kids are missing. Lee Chung-chiang screaming back at her gets her to stop. It’s a shame that the kid didn’t get blasted, because he sucks.
The other kids appear upstairs in the house. Tong-Tong was locked up for 300 years, which is odd because that house is pretty new construction. The kids will teach Tong-Tong aerobics to make him less stiff. They bend Tong-Tong around a bit and use other workout equipment on him (sped up for comedic effect.)
Soon the three decide to enter a comic book, because, why the heck not go all Gumby on us? Lee Chung-Chiang is left behind and forgotten, but frankly the brat deserves it so good riddance. Now they are in the jungle forest of the comic book. Soon Wolverine is gonna go all “snikt snikt” on them. We got owls, big snakes, cobras, and orangutan fighting a boa constrictor? Someone call the ASPCA! Then Shiao-Chiang falls into two feet of water and can’t seem to get out, dragging Shiao-Ming into it as well and then the two hold a giant snake like it is attacking them or something. Finally, after a long long time Tong-Tong helps them and they’re saved. The best part of all this is the constant cutting back to the owl like he’s going to do something. But he does nothing, nothing!
Mom and Lee Chung-Chiang decide to check out the bigger coffin next to the kid one that got opened. It starts glowing in cheesy special effects goodness. The two hopping vampire parents hop out, try to choke bratty kid (yeah!) then hop off when shot repeatedly by the shotgun. They hop down the road and run into a bunch of kids on motorcycles. The motorcycle guys run into the vampires, splitting them into to so they are now floating torsos while their legs car caught on the fronts of the motorcycles. The vampires are not amused and use their magic to get their legs back, they are gonna teach them a lesson. So they throw them off their bikes.
People call the cops and a whiny police inspector is put on the case. Meanwhile in comic book land, Tong-Tong is walking around all normal, no more hopping. I guess he got bored with hopping. They hear drums in the distance, because the savages are gonna eat the princess. So they decide to go rescue her. What princess? Nevermind.
The kids burst in, but the Tribal Chief is just now setting the logs beneath her on fire. Their interruptions causes him to get angry and he turns into a tiger after first attacking them. Tong-Tong taught the kids magic so now Shiao-Chiang turns into a kung fu guy to fight the tiger. Something must be missing on the tape because now suddenly the Tribal Chief is turning into a guinea pig to scare Shiao-Ming, who thinks it is a rat. So Tong-Tong becomes a cat, causing Tribal Chief to become a poodle. Shiao-Chiang declares he loves to eat dogs and they are delicious! Everyone is dressed as cooks now….Did Korea help fund this movie?
Tribal Chief then turns into Sun Wukong the Monkey King! He starts to beat them all up because that’s what Monkey King does. So Tong-Tong becomes the Monk Xuanzang that is Monkey King’s master in Journey to the West. Tong-Tong recites the spell that causes the crown on Monkey King to get smaller (this is how Xuanzang controlled Monkey King.) Then they rip off Tribal Chief’s clothes, and chase after him. Okay.
Ummm don’t you remember the princess tied to the fire? Oh, well, I guess they can eat her when all the fighting’s over.
The hopping vampire parents are still hopping around town, freaking out civilians and chasing after the cops who try to shoot them. They beat up the whiny police detective, which is good because he sucks.
Tribal Chief goes up to a snake statue idol and begs it to give him powers to defeat his enemies, so the statue glows in cool retro effects, then a line of dangling skeleton trinkets dance out and hop around for a while, eventually entering Tribal Chief and making him more powerful. It’s awesome.
The kids go rescue the princess who isn’t being cooked alive and they run into the jungle. The princess is useless and even manages to hurt herself walking so now they all have to go extra slow on the journey to take her home. Suddenly a bunch of vines grab everyone…wait a minute…vines grabbing young women…. Japan! Get outta this movie!
The kids chainsaw them off thanks to the power of magic…but Tribal Chief makes a gun appear(!) and starts shooting at them. He’s an awful shot, what being a tribal guy who has never seen a gun before, and soon Tong-Tong is tossing hand grenades at him. How Tong-Tong knows what a hand grenade is after being locked in a coffin for 300 years is not explained either.
Next the kids find the snake statue idol, but before they can destroy it, it calls in Tribal Chief, who teleports in and stats beating up the kids again. The kids start punching back…so the Tribal Chief becomes…Jesus! Yes, Jesus, the real Jesus, Jesus Christ! The kids declare they will crucify him, and chase him with a giant cross! Surely not images you would see on an American movie, unless Mel Gibson decides to make a sequel to get his career back.
Next Tribal Chief becomes Dracula – so now it is Western vs Eastern vampires. Someone call the producers of Vampire vs. Vampire! Oddly enough, that giant cross would still work, but instead they just all become hopping vampires to fight him. Tribal Chief becomes a flying witch on a broom next, but the kids blow up the idol so instead he calls in the rest of the tribe who arrive doing acrobatics through the trees in the forest.
The kids defeat the whole tribe, but bad luck happens when one of the charm papers gets put on the comic book in the real world, and now no one can move and the bad guys capture them for eating easily. In the real world, the whole house is getting papered in those charm papers to ward off evil spirits.
After the useless princess prays for God to help, suddenly Bratty kid drops the comic book and a family helper spills water on it, causing it to rain inside and the kids get free to fight the tribe.
Tribal Chief escapes, becomes a Bull King – basically a guy with big horns. So Shiao-Ming becomes some sort of singing princess to catch him, and they do.
In the real world, one of the family helpers that dropped water on the comic tries to dry it off with a candle, but sets it on fire instead. Soon the whole landscape is full of flames and explosions.
The kids escape the comic book – families reunited – and the princess they rescued is probably dead because the comic book burned up. Sorry, princess. Maybe you should have been in another castle!
The hopping vampire family reunited…and then go to go back asleep. Wow, I am glad they enjoy their freedom…to be lazy! The beat up police detective finally arrives to check in on things. He goes downstairs and shoots at the coffins, but nothing really happens and the film just suddenly ends.
WTF kind of ending was that??? Crucify the director!
Rated 7/10 (drunk dad, broken doll, supervisor, dead mom, shotgun mom, friendly cat, tasty dog)