It’s Bubba Ho-Tep!

Since signing up for Netflix I have been watching a lot more movies than ever before in my life. I probably watch 10 movies a week now, where previously I would watch maybe 2-3 a month. As a result of this, and also having the ability to stream the movies instantly as opposed to having to wait for the mail to both deliver and return them, I have been watching pretty much anything with a flashy cover or catchy title; Mom always told me to always judge movies by the cover…

I have watched some pretty bad movies lately as a direct result.

To be fair I have also found a couple that were pretty good. Interstate 60 for instance was a great movie that I had never heard of and would never have seen were it not for the fact that Netflix recommended it to me. Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon was another title that they recommended that I thought was excellent. Occasionally they are bound to hit a bit wide of the mark. Such was the case with Bubba Ho-Tep.

Bubba Ho-Tep was another of the Netflix recommendations. As is generally the case with the recommendations, I don’t like to read anything about the movies they recommend before I watch them. Being totally unaware of where the plot is going keeps me from trying to guess the ending (which I’m sure my wife will tell you is an annoyance that I have trouble shaking). So I went into this movie knowing nothing except what you see in the picture to the right there: It somehow involved Elvis.

I know from spending hours watching the history channel that “Ho-Tep” came at the end of the names of some of the Egyptian Pharaohs. While I wasn’t entirely sure whether that was a name or a title (still don’t know really) I was relatively sure that it was being used in the latter context in the film. When the movie opened up on what appeared to be Elvis in his 60’s in a retirement home, I was a little thrown. I had been expecting this to be some sort of a bio-pic about the life of Elvis or something. Boy was I ever wrong. The reality was far worse.

I’m going to spoil the plot now.

Evidently, according to the film, the real Elvis had traded places with an Elvis impersonator sometime prior to the famous death of the king in 1977. The real Elvis was still living as an Elvis impersonator, but had accidentally burnt up the only proof he had of that on a barbeque grill at his trailer park (seriously). So the real Elvis was now wasting away in a backwater retirement home. Everything in the movie was very anachronistic though, this was supposedly at least a couple decades after Elvis’ death -clearly set in the 1980s or more current- but the lights, beds, radiators, doorknobs, bedpans, and, well just about everything electrical inside the retirement home looked more like what you would expect to see in the 1940s than the 1980s. That’s really beside the point though.

While he is in the retirement home, Elvis happens to meet John F. Kennedy. Kennedy is now a black man. Evidently after the shots rang out from the school book depository that day in Dallas, Kennedy’s brain managed to survive the ordeal (although anyone who has ever seen the Zapruder film could clearly see that a great deal of his brain matter got splattered all over the back of the convertible. In fact Jackie O was said to be trying to scrape it up off of the trunk in the later frames) but for security reasons the secret service had put his brain into a black man… ‘Cause no one would think to look there. No shit, This is really in the movie.

Now that we have both Elvis and JFK on the lam in a retirement home somewhere in Jerkwater, what do they do with the film? Do they tell the stories that led up to them eventually being put into the home? Do they try to quell rumors about the alleged conspiracies that surround both of their untimely deaths? Nope. They fight a Mummy.

Yes, that’s right. A mummy. An Egyptian mummy that at one point actually uses a toilet inside the retirement home and scratches graffiti -in hieroglyph of course- on the walls. The mummy was evidently being transported by bus between a couple of towns when it somehow got lost (in a bus accident I think it was). But for some reason that they never even bothered to try to explain, this mummy was not wrapped up in the typical strips of cloth you have come to expect from mummies, he was dressed up as a cowboy! Because when I think Egyptian mummy, I immediately think of ceremonial silver and gold belt buckles that say “Bubba”, don’t you? As I say, they didn’t even try to explain this part. But they do say that he eats people’s souls…

What becomes of these legendary figures in American history as they battle it out with the boot-scootin’ bad-ass from Beni Suef? Well you’ll just have to watch the movie to find that out, won’t you…

But the odds of you actually watching it are bad enough that I should just go ahead and tell you that JFK dies in the fight, but Elvis manages to kill defeat the mummy. And I just saved you the 90 minutes of your life that you would have wanted back if you had watched it. You’re welcome.

Leave a Reply