It was pretty evident from the moment I gazed upon the packaging for “Gnome Alone” what Lionsgate was trying to do. They wanted to launch a low-budget indie horror franchise in the vein of “Leprechaun.” The only problem is the charm and black humor which awarded our little green friend’s movies annual viewings at St. Patrick’s Day is covered here in a layer of raunch that will detract many viewers from giving it the same respect.
Just when Zoe (Kerry Knuppe) thinks she's all alone in this world, an old woman (Willow Hale) passes on her bewitched Gnome (Verne Troyer), who is bound by magic to protect his master. Zoe quickly realizes that he isn't your garden variety gnome, when he begins eliminating her enemies in extravagant displays of revenge. Zoe must find a way to stop this mischievous gnome, before Zoe and her friends become victims of his trickery.
I know what the makers of “Gnome Alone” are shooting for. They are looking for a chance to connect to an audience seeking holiday horror movies to add to their list of yearly programming. People will pick it up mistakenly thinking it’s a genre Christmas tale because of the title’s resemblance to “Home Alone.” After getting into it, they’ll find ties to leprechauns, which will lead viewers to link it to St. Patrick’s Day.
“Gnome Alone” has some entertainingly gory kills, but nothing that will stick in your mind the way the ones in the “Leprechaun” movies do. How can you top being pogo-sticked to death or having a weird little green creature climb out of your stomach? I can’t even remember one of the death scenes from this movie right off-hand.
What I do remember is a lot of sexual situations that seemed like they were trying to one-up their 1980s horror / slasher counterparts. I don’t particularly like nudity or adult situations even being in genre films. “Gnome Alone” definitely takes it to a whole other level of smut.
Verne Troyer plays the little monster in “Gnome Alone” giving the title character an air of creepiness and a pinch of sleaziness. Most folks will identify him as Mini-Me from the “Austin Powers” movies. The only other noticeable face for me was that of Bill Oberst, Jr. He’s had roles in several grade B and Z horror films like “Krampus: The Christmas Devil,” “Abraham Lincoln vs. Zombies,” and “A Haunting in Salem” to name a few.
Special features for "Gnome Alone" include a behind-the-scenes featurette with cast and crew interviews. The movie is rated R for sex and nudity, violence and gore, profanity, alcohol / drugs / smoking, and frightening and intense scenes.
“Gnome Alone” will no doubt find an audience who doesn’t mind its descent into raunchiness. It goes too far in that direction for my tastes. I prefer holiday and creature feature slashing and bloodletting that doesn’t make me feel like I need to take a shower afterwards.
"Gnome Alone" is available now on DVD and as a Digital Download.