Leprechaun (1993) reviews and overview

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‘Her luck just ran out.’

Leprechaun is a 1993 American horror comedy feature film written and directed by Rick James and starring Warwick Davis and Jennifer Aniston in her first feature film role.

Despite mostly negative reviews, the film was a hit with audiences and took $8.6 million at the box office against a reported budget of $900,000. Gabe Bartalos (Basket Case) provided the make-up effects.


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Daniel O’Grady returns home to the United States from a trip to Ireland to tell his wife that he had captured a Leprechaun and that by doing so, acquired his pot of gold.

Unknowing to him, the evil Leprechaun had stowed away in one of his suitcases, killing his wife by pushing her down the basement stairs. After burying the gold, Daniel discovers the leprechaun and tries to kill it by showing a four-leaf clover, the Leprechaun’s weakness.


He manages to trap him inside a crate and attempts to burn it and the house to the ground, but suffers a stroke, leaving the leprechaun inside, guarded by the magic of the four leaf clover.

Ten years pass: When J.D. Redding and his teenage daughter Tory rent the O’Grady farmhouse for the summer when they meet Nathan Murphy, his little brother Alex, and their mentally challenged friend Ozzie “the Bozz” Jones, who are repainting the farmhouse.

Ozzie is looking around the basement when he hears the Leprechaun’s cry for help, mistaking him for a little child. He brushes the old four-leaf clover off the crate, letting the Leprechaun break free…

Reviews [click links to read more]:

“Writer-director Mark Jones strains mightily to achieve cliche level, but the movie isn’t dumb enough to be fun. The settings are drab, the plot creaks, the dialogue is full of empty chirps. And the cast of victims is the usual all-formula grab-bag…” Michael Wilmington, Los Angeles Times

“The kills are cool and the cartoonish tone that the movie takes makes it fun. You laugh while people are injured and killed and the Leprechaun drops numerous puns/one-liners. The comedy is mingled with the horror aspects of the film in a very successful way; there is serious gore, but also a Leprechaun cackling while riding a tricycle. At one point, he even smashes into Jennifer Aniston’s vehicle in a little Leprechaun car.” Bloodcrypt

“With a funny leprechaun and weird grouping of characters, it’s a shame that this film is kind of stale. Reflecting on it, it’s without a doubt a bad movie, but there’s also not much to it. Though we have exciting kill methods, the scenes are anticlimactic, easy to drift off to, and very predictable.” Oh, the Horror!

“It has a little element of camp, but not enough to make it enjoyable. And the costume isn’t that scary […] The only really enjoyable part is getting to see Jennifer Aniston bit by a Leprechaun. That’s not a sentence we ever thought we’d be writing, but there it is.” Ethan Lewis, Den of Geek!

Cast and characters:

  • Warwick Davis … The Leprechaun
  • Jennifer Aniston … Tory Redding
  • Ken Olandt … Nathan Murphy
  • Mark Holton … Ozzie Jones
  • Robert Hy Gorman … Alex Murphy
  • David Permenter … Deputy Tripet
  • William Newman … Sheriff Cronin
  • Shay Duffin … Dan O’Grady
  • Pamela Mant … Mrs. O’Grady
  • John Sanderford … J. D. Redding

Filming locations:

Saugus, California

Jennifer Aniston looks back on the movie:

In October 2019, Yahoo reported on Jennifer Aniston talking to Howard Stern about her first major movie role in Leprechaun.  She said: “I really thought I arrived when I did Leprechaun. It was with Warwick Davis, the guy from Willow was in it. It was a big deal! I really did think it was an amazing thing that I was in a movie.”

Aniston revealed to Stern that she most recently revisited Leprechaun around eight years ago when then-boyfriend Justin Theroux insisted upon watching it one night.

“I watched it like, eight years ago with our mutual friend Justin Theroux for sh*ts and giggles,” she explained. “We were dating. It was one of those things when I tried to get that remote out of his hand and there was just no having it. He was like, ‘No, no, no, no, this is happening. I just kept walking in and out, cringing.”

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