Leprechaun 5: In the Hood
leprechaun | leprechaun 5: in the hood | monster | creature | creature feature | sequel | robspera | doug hall | jon huffman | warwick davis | ice-t | anthony montgomery | action | comedy | fantasy | music | rashaan nall | red grant | dan martin | lobo sebastian | jack ong
Film: Leprechaun 5: In the Hood
Director: Rob Spera
Writers: Doug Hall and Jon Huffman
Starring: Warwick Davis, Ice-T and Anthony Montgomery
This was a movie that I remember when it hit the movie channels but had never seen it. I feel like I saw parts. This sounded like low budget trash and I was being a bit pretentious. Reflecting, that is a harsh judgment without seeing it. It is odd though since I had enjoyed all the movies in the series until this point. I decided to watch this to continue with my St. Patrick’s Day tradition to watch the next movie in line.
Synopsis: when three rappers want to get even with a pimp, they accidentally unleash a leprechaun who goes on a killing rampage in tha ‘hood.
We start this movie off with a new rhyme that gives a bit of backstory to the curse and his gold. It also incorporates elements to include ‘hood’ references. What I will give credit to here is that this is setting the tone. This is cheesy, that should be set up.
This then starts in the past. Mack Daddy (Ice-T) and his partner are searching for gold in a tunnel or something of the sorts. They supposedly have a map and they have to break into the area that they’re in. Mack Daddy is starting to believe that his partner doesn’t know what he is talking about. They accidentally knock down a wall to reveal a leprechaun statue. There is a necklace around its neck. Mack Daddy is looking for a golden flute, which I’m guessing he heard a legend about since that is all he wants. The other guy takes off the amulet, reviving the creature. He is played by the great Warwick Davis. They’re attacked and by chance, the necklace goes back on the creature’s neck, trapping it yet again.
We then shift to the present of the movie. Postmaster P. (Anthony Montgomery), Stray Bullet (Rashaan Nall) and Butch (Red Grant) are a rap group that is trying to get into a competition that is taking place in Las Vegas. They’re not good though. The person they’re auditioning for gets upset when their set blows out his equipment. He is willing to give them another chance if they figure things out.
They also shoot their shot with Mack Daddy. He has a successful record label. They audition there and he sees potential. The trio wants to positive messages in their songs where Mack Daddy knows that won’t sell. Postmaster P declines his offer, upsetting Stray Bullet. He then comes up with another plan. Mack Daddy is a criminal so he wants to rob him. It takes convincing, but his friends agree. In the process, the Leprechaun is freed. Postmaster P also gets the golden flute and experiments with its power. Our group now must evade both this supernatural creature and the gangster with his crew to survive.
That should be enough to recap the story and introduce the characters. Where I want to start is that since this is the fifth movie in the series, where are we at with the continuity. This one is ignoring the installment before. That one was set in the future and in space, so I’m not shocked there. I do believe that this is falling in line with being more a sequel to Leprechaun 2. I know that one takes place in LA like we get here. He did have an underground cave lair and that is where they find him. I know the third had this medallion as well. There is a new artifact introduced here so I’m willing to fall in line with the movie logic without it ruining things. Its close enough. I’ve also fallen in line with JP from the 22 Shots of Moodz and Horror that these are almost independent of each other and are featuring different leprechauns.
I also don’t completely hate what we do here. This isn’t a great modern blaxploitation film, but I applaud them for having a predominantly black cast. We have a couple of actors I recognize with Ice-T and Dan Martin, who runs a pawn shop. This works for me. It is also funny that Jack Ong plays the owner of another shop because Asians also tend to be in these modern takes of movies in the hood as well. There is truth in the plight of the people we are seeing and it isn’t mocking them completely. It is interesting to have Rob Spera direct who is white. There are also a lot of writers on this for the story so I’m wondering if that is my issue and why it doesn’t flow as well.
What I mean there is that the rhymes that our rap group do feel very white. They’re not good and cheesy. I’ll shift over to the acting here as well. I think that Ice-T embodies this pimp who is one of the villains. He’s great in roles like this. Montgomery, Nall and Grant are fine. They don’t stand out, but I’ve seen worse performances. I did like Martin and Ong in their roles. The rest of the cast round this out for what was needed. It feels quite generic and what I’d expect for a straight to video sequel. Someone who is great once again though is Davis. He owns this role as the monster and I love him for coming back so many times to be it.
I’ll then take this to the filmmaking. I’d say that the cinematography is fine. It doesn’t stand out, but it falls in as well with what I’ve said already. This feels like a straight to video so it doesn’t look great. I also say again, it’s of the era. The effects were good though at times. I did appreciate that. This one doesn’t lean in as much to the Leprechaun’s powers. It loses a bit of charm there as well. There is an odd power that is introduced here where our creature can brainwash people. It would make sense if he had the flute since that is what it does. He has a trio of women that follow him. This didn’t make sense to me. Other than that, the music isn’t good. The raps we hear are cheesy and made me cringe. This is a letdown having the music angle be an aspect of what this is working with.
In conclusion, this movie isn’t the worst. We are five movies into a franchise so I’m not expecting much. There are bright spots. I’d say that going with the blaxploitation angle is fine. It is lacking heart there. Ice-T and Davis are good in their roles. It feels like we have too many ‘cooks in the kitchen’ so it loses things. There are good effects, but they don’t go far enough with what gave the earlier films charm. This ends up just feeling like a cash grab without remembering why these were enjoyable. Only can recommend if you want to go through the series.
My Rating: 4.5 out of 10