Slumber Party Massacre (2021)
The original Slumber Party Massacre trilogy of slasher flicks have been a staple in many horror fans essential Halloween viewing lists for almost forty years. The power drill-wielding maniac who stalks and hunts teens at sleepovers has left a legacy in the genre for both its comedic nature and relentless kills of total babes. Fast forward to this year and writer Suzanne Keilly and director Danishka Esterhazy brought the series back to life with a reimagining of Roger Corman's 1982 nudity filled flick. The film just recently debuted on the Syfy channel but I rented it immediately after seeing it pop up available for rent; I slumbered on the Slumber Party Massacre series for a long time and when I finally got around to checking out the first one, I immediately needed to watch the following two, I was addicted to how amazing they were. I didn't even bother watching the trailer to this 2021 version of the film, honestly - I wanted to go into it without the risk of seeing anything that might spoil a scene of the movie and boy am I glad I just jumped right in; the film is pretty fantastic. The movie absolutely does not hide the fact that its totally self aware and absolutely plays on the tropes of slasher comedies of the last few decades, and even the tropes of the previous three Slumber Party Massacre films... and it does so in a way that is funny, witty, smart, and above all, clever. With a 100% complete lack of female nudity but some full view shots of man ass and half naked guys having pillow fights, the film clearly did a total role reversal of the classic movies and made those scenes especially funny. Was I shocked not to see a single female nipple throughout the movies entire hour and a half runtime? Obviously, but what the film lacks in nipple it makes up with truly creative, blood-filled, body mutilating kills that I wouldn't have traded for a single ass cheek shot. The twists that the story throw at you are fucking phenomenal and my one piece of advice is just be patient with the film: it will get there, and when it does, you will fucking love what comes next. (Readers beware: this review contains spoilers so please proceed with caution!)
In 1993, four girls are having a slumber party out in a cabin in the woods when three of them - along with one of the peeping tom ex-boyfriends - are brutally murdered by a killer with a power drill. Russ Thorne meets his end when the only survivor of the attack manages to fight back and knock him into the lake where he drowns... or does he? Fast forward to the present day and four girls are going away for a girls weekend out in the woods when one of the girls sister reveals she snuck into the car and now joins the group on their getaway. But little does she know... they are staying in the same woods that the power drill killer slaughtered those teens all those years ago. As various characters begin to get picked off one by one, one question remains... is it the real Russ Thorne, still alive after all these years?! It is up to the women to once again fight back and hope that they can escape the whirling nightmare that is the power drill killer? Find out in... 2021's SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE!
The movie kicks off strong, the surprise twists in the middle are strong, and the film ends strong; that is not a sentence I write very often but this movie definitely deserves it. Just after the movies intro lunges you into a bloody '93, the modern day storyline kicks off with these four girls making their way to their girls getaway. Shortly after, the groups true intentions come to light and it's what really makes this film so fucking good. It feels purposely silly while somehow still remaining top quality, and does a really great job at both subtle and and not-so-subtle mockery of the clichés of 80s slashers in general, not just the Massacre series. Brilliantly written, brilliantly executed, and both funny and creative the whole way through. You know when you're watching a movie like this one and you find yourself slowly kinda losing interest in the scene, because it's not really doing anything for you? Yeah, none of that when it comes to this flick; I found myself totally engaged and sitting here in anticipation of what was coming next; and that was entirely without nipples, who knew?! I think the team behind this one really kinda nailed it on the head when it comes to a silly yet somewhat serious horror, sortive in the way that The Evil Dead did it. I absolutely don't expect this movie to take off with hardcore viewers who will complain that the film doesn't meet the outline that the previous Massacre films did, but it's also been thirty one years since the last one was released so maybe a change of pace was needed for the film to be refreshed or "reimagined." Honestly, audiences watch these movies for two things: boobs and body counts. And what it lacks in boobs, it makes up in blood. Kills including the notorious power drill (obviously), nail guns, car engines, and (my personal favorite of the movie) guitar strings all make Slumber Party Massacre a gore-filled good time. Russ Thorne isn't really a household name when it comes to slashers, but some of the lines that he randomly blurts out prior to his attacks in this movie are worthy of being repeated by horror fans in jest. And while he isn't really that scare of a guy - more so just creepy - his weapon of choice is fucking terrifying. The special effects that come out of his weapon attacks look fantastic and all of the cast truly kicked some fucking ass putting this film together. I don't want to give too much away in this review, but let me just say this: the "roles" each of the girls basically play in their weekend getaway is funny and brilliantly cliché, and I'm willing to bet many horror fans won't even pick up on it until it's thrown right in their face. This is absolutely a film I'll be revisiting each October, and think it rightfully earns its place among the other Slumber Party Massacre movies. Give this one a shot!!!