Chances are you know what/who Bubba is – some Southern guy, a redneck, trailer trash, you get the picture. But what about Ho-Tep? I bet you didn’t know it was a descendant of the 17th Egyptian Dynasties. Well I didn’t know that either until a few hours ago. I bet you also thought that Elvis died of a heart-attack, and that JFK was killed in Dallas by Lee Harvey Oswald. I also would bet that you had no idea all those things could be thrown into a movie, and that said movie would answer the age old question: “Is there finally and really anything to life other than food, shit, and sex?” – Elvis
Elvis (Bruce Campbell), the real one of course not some crazy impersonator, is fine and well and living in a retirement home. OK, maybe he isn’t well, he does have a growth on his pecker and it might be cancerous! But at least he isn’t dying off like the rest of the residents. It turns out in the 70’s the real Elvis switched places with an impersonator just because he was tired of his life. But being a pretty smart feller he signed an agreement with said impersonator just in case he wanted to switch back. If only that agreement wouldn’t have blown up in a terrible BBQ accident at the trailer park. So as history unfolded, the fake Elvis had a bad heart,died, and now the real Elvis is living in Texas trying to convince everyone he isn’t Sebastian Haff. You might ask, what does this have to do with all these old folks dying off… I’m getting there!
One night Elvis is attacked by a giant cock-roach, the same cock-roach who shows up just before the previous few residents died. Unfortunately for this big bug this resident is going to fight back, armed with his karate and a huge fork! After killing the bug he hears a scuttle coming from the hallway, so he travels down to his friend Jack’s room. Jack, aka JFK, is lying on the floor hiding from who he thinks is Lyndon Johnson coming to finish the job. Elvis helps him up, and after a few strange questions from the caretaker, the guys get a much needed nights rest.
The next night Jack and Elvis discover some Egyptian Hieroglyphics in the mens’ room crapper. They use what little brain power they have left (remember Jack’s was mostly blown away in the rifle attack) and come up with some crazy idea that an Egyptian mummy has been resurrected and is feasting on the souls of the residents in the home. He has to keep coming back and killing every couple nights because the souls of the people in the home are pretty weak. But no one will ever mind or figure it out because old people die all the time. It all seems a little too unbelievable until they see a mummy wearing cowboy boots and a fedora walking down the hall like some sort of “Bubba Ho-Tep!” Being the great American heroes we know them to be, they decide to fight the good fight. All that stands between Bubba Ho-Tep and an unlimited amount of souls for him to feed on are Elvis and Jack, armed with gasoline, a lighter, a walker and an electric wheelchair! It looks like Bubba will be living a long time… or will he??
Calling this movie a horror first is probably not the right approach. It is definitely a comedy with some horror tactics thrown in. As a comedy it does very well, and Bruce Campbell plays a fantastic and believable Elvis. He had me cracking up in more than a few places (see video). The horror in the form of an evil mummy wasn’t scary at all, but I don’t think it was meant to be. It’s just a fun flick that bridges a couple different genres in a way you don’t typically see. Any Bruce Campbell fan would be very satisfied with this movie as I was, but don’t expect to be scared out of your wits on the couch with the girlfriend. Bubba Ho-Tep gets 3.5 black JFKs (did I forget to mention he was black, dyed by the government to help hide him) out of 5!
Bubba Ho-Tep: [usr=3.5]