WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
Welcome to the second instalment of You Broke It: 3 Trilogies That Went Awry. Today we’ll be looking at the third movie in the Urban Legends franchise, Bloody Mary. I chose this movie because it fit many of the same criteria as I’ll Always Know What You Did Last Summer in that, while the first two Urban Legends movies were not directly linked, this movie takes the story down a completely different track and completely abandons its predecessors’ slasher elements in favour of being a ghost story. I would also like to state from the get-go that, despite the title, the Bloody Mary myth is used very loosely and only as a means of justifying adding this movie to the franchise.
To begin our story we need to go back in time to the summer of ’69, albeit a far more tragic version than the one Bryan Adams has been describing for all these years. It’s the local high school’s homecoming celebration (admittedly, living in South Africa, I have no clue how homecoming works or what it’s for) and Mary Banner just feels like the most important girl in the whole school. The alpha jock has decided to dump his bitch of a girlfriend Dawn and asks Mary to the dance, proving that every now and then the plain girl can get the guy. He even manages to hook Mary’s 2 best friends Gina and Grace up with two of his buddies so that they can all be a matching set. If only good things like this did happen to the plain girl. Seems like the boys and Dawn aren’t happy about the fact that Mary and Co. don’t worship the ground the walk on so they decide to drug the three girls and play a little prank on them. Mary, not having any of it, runs away and tries to find help. Unfortunately for her she lands up cornered in the basement and, while trying to escape, she trips and knocks her head on the table, killing her. Not wanting to go to jail the alpha jock takes her body and hides it in a trunk, where it has stayed ever since.
Flash forward to 2005 and history’s busy repeating itself, just this time it has the use of modern technology. Samantha works for the school newspaper and recently published an article debating whether footballers should be given good grades simply because they know how to run around a field and throw a ball to one another. The article is accompanied by a very unflattering photograph of three jocks in particular. When homecoming rolls round Sam and her two friends decide that they don’t want to go and instead stage a slumber party. The boys, upset at how their vast levels of intelligence have been insulted by Sam’s article, rock up in the middle of the night, give the girls some chloroform and stick them in a room in the old abandoned paper mill. Unlike the events of the summer of ’69, however, all of the girls make it out alive and, the scare aside, seem none the worse for wear and continue on with their lives. This is when things start to get a little bit strange.
Having shouted out the words ‘Bloody Mary’ three times during the slumber party (although not into a mirror or anything even mildly reflective) Sam and her friends have somehow managed to invoke the spirit of Mary Banner, and she’s pissed. Seeing this turn of events and Sam’s similar situation Mary decides that now is the time to take her revenge and kill those people involved in Sam’s kidnapping. It starts off with a simple homage to Aerobicide where one of the jocks is fried to a crisp in a sun tanning bed but gradually the attacks become more sinister and Mary’s ghost becomes angrier and angrier. What Sam and her twin brother David need to find out is why Mary has come back and why she has chosen this as her method of seeking revenge. With the help of Grace they will seek to uncover the truth about what happened all those years ago, but they will not seek to find out how Grace, a heavy stoner who hasn’t been outside her house in years, manages to get groceries and daily copies of the newspaper.
Some final thoughts on the matter. Like I’ll Always Know What You Did Last Summer this isn’t a terrible movie and, had it been released as a stand-alone film, would probably have been reasonably entertaining. It suffers from the fact that it tries to force the urban legend angle where it really doesn’t fit into the plot. The reference to Bloody Mary herself is only used so that the movie can in some way try to fit in with its predecessors and the murders using urban legends is in no way justified or explained. The use of newspaper clippings referring to the second Urban Legends movie, as well as a few recycled scenes, also fail to make this in any way a part of a continuous narrative. Whoever’s idea this was should hang their head in shame (just a little bit) for trying to sell a ghost story by piggy backing on two slasher films and hoping that nobody would notice. Because we did.
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- To spike a hippie chick’s drink you need A LOT of rohypnol.
- Girls who assert their independence and opinions are doomed to a lonely, single life.
- Pillow fights are a great way for friends to sort out their issues.
- Some people just don’t see the funny side of being drugged and locked in a room.
- Alpha jocks can convince lesser jocks to do anything.
- Anyone who uses dial-up internet is high on crack.
- Ghosts always start out with a plan but God help you they devise a new one later on.
URBAN LEGENDS: BLOODY MARY TRAILER
BUY URBAN LEGENDS: BLOODY MARY AT AMAZON.COM
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
BUY I’LL ALWAYS KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER AT AMAZON.COM
WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
I’ve watched many a bad movie in my time, but rarely do you come across a movie as sneaky as this one. I actually saw this one a few years ago, quite a bit before I started this blog. I thought of reviewing it when I just started everything up but couldn’t remember it well enough so I left it. One day is one day and I’m getting ready for a b-movie evening when I come across a movie called Sickle in one of my little boxes of discount horror and decided to give it a watch. Turned out to be this movie under a different name. Sneaky little hobbitses! Unlike a fine wine I actually think this one got worse with time, but let me first describe it to you and then you can decide whether you’d want to give this one a spin.
As with any slasher we need a little back story to get us going so we first need to go back 10 years in time. A rather slutty girl has decided to drag her boyfriend out to the strangely remote slaughterhouse to have a little fun. For some or other reason the idea of having sex right next to the spot where chickens are de-feathered is just too damn arousing for her and her purple velvet thong to resist so, despite some objections from the boyfriend, they make their way inside anyway. Of course, just because the slaughterhouse is out in the middle of nowhere doesn’t mean that it’s abandoned; if b-movies have taught me anything it’s that the exact opposite is usually the case. This is the slaughterhouse of Marty Sickle (apt name), a man who doesn’t take kindly to college kids having sex near his chicken bath. To take care of the problem he stabs the guy in the back while the two are going at it and then has his way with the girl. The girl then summons every jock she can find to lynch Marty and get back at him for what he did. The legend of Marty Sickle then passes into local folklore…
More to the point the story makes its way into the minds of a group of dumb jocks and even dumber bimbos. These are your typical first year college students who are somewhere in their mid-30s but trying to look a lot younger than they actually are. Feeling that good grades aren’t all that necessary in life they decide to have a party before some of them go on to the old slaughterhouse for some silly fun. What this movie then tries to teach you is that all you need for there to be a party are a few loose women prepared so experiment with their sexuality in front of a group of strangers. This is just as well, because the party doesn’t have an awful lot more going for it (who keeps a TV on the floor?) After panning around the room for about 20 minutes the director eventually decided that it was time to get on with the main point of the movie and it’s off to the slaughterhouse we go!
Much like the tale of Bloody Mary the legend goes that if you go to the exact spot where Marty Sickle died and mutter a little rhyme a few times his ghost will come back from the other side and go after anyone who dares to enter his old domain. This is jumping the gun a little since there is a very crucial point that needs to be made about this movie. Filmed on a budget of $250 000 there clearly wasn’t a lot of money available for a decent space to actually do the filming. To counteract this the actors move from room to room and scene to scene at an agonizingly slow rate. When they actually do summon the ghost of Marty Sickle back they even try to escape from him at the same rate. The only reason that they don’t die very quickly is that Sickle himself moves at a snail’s pace, but to be fair he has been dead for 10 years so the others really don’t have an excuse. The question of course is that when you yourself walk like a geriatric and you’re being chased by a ghost whose speed and stealth are the equivalent of a pregnant hippo what are the chances of this little group of friends and lovers making it out of this situation alive?
Apart from the horrifyingly slow pace that this movie moves at I’m glad I (re)watched it because it was enough to give the Breast-O-Meter a good try out without overloading it on its first go 🙂
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- It is possible to smoke weed for 48 hours straight and feel very few side effects.
- Women who can’t find their boyfriends routinely go into occupied bathrooms to see if he’s there.
- The police still refer to weed as ‘wacky tobacky’.
- Ghosts are remarkably solid.
- After your boyfriend sacrifices himself so that you can escape the best plan is to run back into the haunted building.
- A combination of wearing silk underwear and being pregnant virtually guarantees your survival during a ghost attack.
- The number of deaths resulting from bleeding ankles is tragically underestimated.
BUY THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE MASSACRE AT AMAZON.COM
1983 : Year of Release : 2009
Horror / Thriller : Genre : Horror / Thriller
5.7 / 10 : IMDB Rating : 5 / 10
Surprise! : Level of Awful : Low
Welcome to the B-Horror Blog’s first ever B-Horror Throwdown! The premise is simple: take a cheesy horror movie fitting of this site, find its remake and pit the two against one another. The rules are simple: the original movie is the benchmark that the remake is compared against – is it true to the original? Does it improve on the original? What new elements have been incorporated? Does the remake manage to raise the bar or dive into new depths of cheesy goodness? So many questions to answer and in the end only one can be the winner and the loser needs to have the crap beaten out of it. For the first Throwdown! I have chosen to pit The House on Sorority Row against Sorority Row. The reasoning behind this is that I’d seen the original about a year ago but hadn’t gotten around to watching the remake. This provides the perfect opportunity to judge the new movie against an original that I’ve already formed an opinion of. Plus I got the original in a 4-in-1 bargain pack and that means it automatically qualifies for a place on the B-Horror Blog 🙂
To begin with, these two movies have very little in common with one another other than the premise that they are built on. In House Mrs Slater, the housemother of the Pi Theta sorority, is a bitch that the girls in the house detest. They become particularly pissed off when she forbids them from having a final party for their graduation and decide that they should pull a good old-fashioned sorority prank on her. This prank involves taking her walking stick and leaving it in the middle of the swamp-like swimming pool and holding a gun to her and making her dive in. Lead bitch Vicki (Eileen Davidson of later Days of our Lives fame), however, decides that it will be even more fun if they load the gun and fire some shots off for extra effect. Since one of the great rules of horror is that things like this should never go according to plan one of the bullets lands up hitting Mrs Slater and killing her. The girls decide that they should dispose of the body so that the four years of college education they’ve just completed doesn’t go to waste. This said and done and their party well under way the girls are stalked by a killer intent on taking out those people who killed Mrs Slater (or did they?).
Sorority Row follows its predecessor in that it’s also based around the prank-gone-wrong scenario. This time the girls of Theta Pi sorority (it’s not the same movie if you switch the Greek letters around) are planning on getting even: Megan, one of the sisters, has been cheated on by her boyfriend Garrett. Since being in a sorority apparently means that anything and everything should be done to uphold sisterly honour (I’m not familiar with the Greek system so I’m really just running with it here) the other sisters Jessica (lead bitch), Cassidy (loyal and brave), Chugs (slutty drunk and Garrett’s sister), Claire (shy wannabe of the Asian persuasion) and Ellie (shy redhead) pretend to give Garrett pills to drug Megan to ‘get her in the mood’ (<- Right there! See it? Just set the women’s movement back by at least 20 years!). When Megan begins throwing up everywhere (part of the plan) the girls and Garrett drive out to an old abandoned mine where they pretend that they need to dispose of the body by cutting it up. For fun this is all being recorded on a cellphone. Jessica tells everyone to go and find sharp stones to cut the body up (part of the plan) but Garrett, understandably freaked out, takes a tire iron and punctures Megan’s lung so that her body won’t float in the lake (NOT part of the plan). They then need to actually dispose of the body by throwing it down the abandoned mine’s shaft. 8 months later as the sisters prepare to graduate a killer stalks Theta Pi’s final party killing off the girls and miscellaneous others. Like the girls from House, did Jen & Co. actual kill Megan?
So what are we left with? The House on Sorority Row, much to my surprise, is actually a good movie so long as you can see past the 80s-ness of it. It’s a different take on the slasher genre and it plays out well with all of the girls playing their parts well. And it has clowns – anything with clowns is scary. Sorority Row also isn’t a bad movie, but unfortunately it’s no where near as good as the first one. Ironically it’s the fact that it’s meant to be a ‘re-imagining’ of House that’s its primary problem: had it been given a different name and not leaned on the original it would have been a fairly decent watch. I liked seeing Princess Leah as the housemother Mrs Crenshaw and I liked that the characters were meant to be somewhat related to the characters in the original. I thought that the way they incorporated Mrs Slater’s walking stick in one of the scenes was very well done. I certainly didn’t like Rumer Willis in the role whiny, irritating, crying-every-three-seconds Ellie and the twist to find out who the killer is left me cold. While Sorority Row had some fantastic kills and it certainly brought up the sleaze level to a point an 80s movie just couldn’t aim for I still feel as though it leaves you wanting a little more.
The rules of Throwdown! state that a winner needs to be picked and the loser have the crap beaten out of it. While House on Sorority Row was fun and original, Sorority Row wasn’t unique enough to be a movie in its own right and not close enough to the original to be a decent remake. House on Sorority Row wins this round!
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- You can perform a Caesarean section with nothing but a surgical knife and a candle.
- Contrary to modern times it was considered the norm in the 80s for men to wear micro shorts and for women to wear manly shirts.
- 80s sex involved a lot of groaning with very little movement.
- Two towels are heavy enough to sink a human corpse.
- In case of emergency reach for the knife in the doll’s head.
- A willingness to dispose of your friend’s body shows how much you love your family.
- Being a member of a sorority is similar to making a blood oath with the devil.
- Murdering is a wonderful couple’s activity.
- On a psycho scale 50 crazy bitches is the rough equivalent of one serial killer.
THE HOUSE ON SORORITY ROW TRAILER
SORORITY ROW TRAILER