Bubba Ho-Tep Don Coscarelli

Bubba Ho-Tep Don Coscarelli
Much ado has been made about this B-horror/comedy, which many thought would be nothing. It’s no wonder, considering the insanity and asinine quality of the premise and cast of characters: a decrepit, herniated, retirement home-laden Elvis Presley (Bruce Campbell, Evil Dead) and his new pal, a black JFK (Ossie Davis, Do The Right Thing), who claims the government "coloured” his skin with dye to hide the fact that he’s still alive. The duo must save themselves and their fellow aged companions from annihilation by a 3,000-year-old Egyptian mummy that’s become reanimated and is feeding on the souls of the living, by sucking it out of the victim’s anus. All of this goes down in Nowheresville, Texas, to boot. It sounds completely ludicrous but it works. The odd pairing lends incredible believability to an otherwise outrageous story. As is expected, the always-entertaining Campbell brings his version of Presley to life with kitsch and tongue-in-cheek humour, while Davis’s JFK rides the perfect line between supporting and almost overshadowing the King via pie-eyed innocence. Festooned in a white pleather slipcase resembling one of the studded jackets from Presley’s more aesthetically overbearing days, this updated DVD treatment is every bit as tacky, entertaining and thought-out as its new packaging would insinuate. Like the fresh casing, the disc is wonderfully enhanced, featuring jovial commentaries by Coscarelli and Campbell, as well as a Spinal Tap-ish solo commentary by "the King.” Two deleted scenes and a music video are passable bits of fluff, while the obligatory "behind the scenes” featurettes about the making of the Bubba Ho-Tep costume, Elvis’s garb and typical backstage banter are well done. As far as treatments go — "special,” "gold,” "platinum” or otherwise — this one is fit for a "King.” (MGM)