WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
Welcome to the first installment of You Broke It: 3 Trilogies That Went Awry. Today we’ll be looking at I’ll Always Know What You Did Last Summer, the final (failed) installment in the I Know What You Did Last Summer series. To begin with one of this movie’s major failings is that the title is just far too long, but some people may be wondering why I’ve given it a ‘Low’ Level of Awful. In my own opinion this movie might have stood a chance at being one of those little films that you watch once, kind of enjoy and then completely forget had it not tried to follow up on its predecessors. The storyline in no way follows on from the other two and none of the previous cast makes a return, but some bright spark thought that trying to forcibly connect the two plots would be a good idea. It really wasn’t. Let’s take a look at the story…
Somewhere between 1998 and 2006 the horrific events that centred on Julie James and her friends entered into a little town’s list of folklore tales and now, on July 4th every year, the Fisherman is said to make a return and begin killing teenagers at random. Seeing that this is a small town and high school students (in their late 20s) have very little to do with their time Amber, Zoe, Roger, Colby and PJ decide that they should do a little reenactment at the local carnival for some laughs. Roger will play the Fisherman, PJ will be the hapless victim and afterwards they’ll all get together for some laughs. Everything’s going fine until PJ skateboards up on a roof and the mattresses placed on the ground for him to jump onto are replaced with a tractor. PJ is impaled and dies at the scene and his friends, not wanting to confess to anything and risk being stuck in this little town forever, decide that they’ll hide the evidence and take the secret to their graves. It’s what PJ would have wanted after all.
A year passes and a lot of things have changed for our little group. Colby went off to college leaving the one-time love of his life Amber behind. Amber and Zoe, once the best of friends, are no longer in touch and Roger has gone into hiding, too haunted by the events of the previous year to deal with his friends or the outside world in general. Aah, if only wallowing in misery were so simple. As the anniversary of PJ’s death approaches Amber begins to receive a string of text messages, all of which bear a familiar message: I know what you did last summer. Suspicion inevitably sets in: who opened their mouths? Who went and put all of their futures at risk? Things are further complicated by the addition of Lance, PJ’s cousin who has had a thing for Amber for quite a while now. Soon the threats go beyond the digital realm and the Fisherman makes his presence known by killing Roger and leaving even more messages for all the others. The group now needs to band together to outsmart the Fisherman and outlive one another.
It doesn’t help, of course, that the fisherman is actually some demonic entity hell-bent on killing them all without having any real weaknesses that mortals tend to find rather cumbersome. To make this seemingly all tie back into the first two movies this Fisherman appears to be the ghost of Ben Willis, the original murderer from 10 years ago (according to the movie’s chronology). By using his history to play a prank that ultimately killed their friend and by then covering it up Amber and co. somehow invoked Ben and, in order to return to the other side, he has to do to this lot what he tried to do to the first bunch.
My final thoughts on the matter. This is not altogether a terrible movie. It doesn’t fail at being a horror movie, and there were times when I did jump a little. It simply fails at being an installment in a trilogy that it really has nothing to do with. The attempts, and there are many, to both compare it to the original movie and then to try and make the original storyline continue are completely forced and ineffectual. With a little reworking of the script to make it a stand-alone movie this might have been moderately enjoyable. Sadly this was not to be and all the horror community is left with is a movie whose title is too long and who brings a series I really enjoyed crashing to the ground.
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- Just because it’s legendary doesn’t mean it can’t be bought on Ebay.
- You know you’re in a small town when the college kids are holding parties in a barn.
- Hiding the fact that you murdered a great friend can really put strain on a relationship.
- A girl who receives 1 threatening message is perplexed. A girl who receives 50 of the same threatening message is terrified.
- No matter what a sheriff saying ‘hi’ is just creepy for some reason.
- Policemen are known to be incredibly flirty at murder scenes.
- When being stalked by a killer you should make sure you are alone in dark places as often as possible.
- When the killer does eventually appear you should break away from the group and run somewhere you can’t escape from.
I’LL ALWAYS KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER TRAILER
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