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Mother’s Day (1980)

Damien Ross

Charles Kauffman

“Once you know what you know, you act on it.”

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Opening scene, E.G.O: Ernie’s Growth Opportunity. “Thank you for sharing with me.” At 5PM, a group of locals appear to be graduating into a cult and ready to take on the world. Afterward, an old lady in a neck brace offers a young man and woman from the group a ride home. They accept and along the way the car breaks down so Neck Brace Lady pulls over and takes a look under the hood. While she’s busy diagnosing the problem, two men appear. One of them chops off the young man’s head through the window with a sword while the other yanks the woman out of the car. They beat her till she crawls over to Neck Brace Lady and begs for her life. Neck Brace Lady chokes her to death with a rope or a wire or something. The two boys are her sons.

Wolfbreath College-1970: A slideshow montage narrated by flaky college girls. They wonder where they’ll be in ten years.

Ten Years Later, Beverly Hills: A lavish pool party... Jump to Chicago: A women walks into her apartment to the bitchy screams of her offscreen mother calling her a slut and accusing her of whoring around... Jump to New York City: A woman comes home to a message on her answering machine from her mother. She is then grabbed and thrown onto her bed... By her boyfriend. He’s gonna stay at her house over the weekend while she’s outta town. He’s the second guy I’ve seen do coke in this film so far.

Jackie picks her two old college buddies up, Abbey and Trina on the side of the road. They stop by the last gas station for beer. Jackie asks the creepy attendant how much farther to Deep Barrens Wilderness and of course he warns her not to go and of course they go anyway.

They arrive, park, and follow a trail. Night comes so they make a fire, get stoned, roast marshmallows, and the pranks ensue. They reminisce on the time they played a prank on a jackass named Dobber that Jackie was seeing in college. That was the night they became the Rat Pack. Jackie has always been pushed around by men. They continue to talk around the campfire as a POV from the woods watches.

In the morning, Abbey wakes up first and goes for a hike. While walking, a hand reaches out of the bushes and grabs her ankle, it’s just Trina. These girls are quite the pranksters in your typical 80’s fake jump-scare fashion.

They go back to the campsite and the three of them jump in the lake naked, boobage! But the POV in the woods is back and now there’s two of them. Guess who: Neck Brace Lady's sons, Ike and Addley.

Later, Jackie catches a big ass trout that feeds the three of them then it’s night again as they lay in their sleeping bags around the campfire having a little heart to heart. Then comes the for real jump-scare as the brothers attack. They tie them up over their sleeping bags and take them home to Mother. 80’s Slasher flicks always played The Boy Who Cried Wolf with the viewer. They trick you with each scare until you assume it's just another fake-scare, and then they dump the real danger on you just as you thought you were safe.

Ike and Addley put the girls into a room so they can display them for Mother, then lead Jackie outside on a dog leash. They go through a series of role-playing that ends in Addley beating and raping Jackie while Mother watches. Trina and Abbey can hear everything while Ike snaps pics on a Polaroid, the original Instagram.

In the morning, the brothers make breakfast, which consists of Nestle Quik, Cheeze-whiz, and a bucket of cereal. There’s an assorted random pile of crap food on the coffee table while the tv plays. They go to feed Trina and Abbey, but Trina keeps talking back, which is not doing her any favors.

After breakfast, Ike and Addley have a goofy backwoods training montage while Mother watches and eggs them on.

Back in the room, the girls are no longer restrained, but they’re not making a run for it either. The brothers start beating the shit out of each other so Abbey lowers Trina down in a sleeping bag by rope. Once free, Trina runs back upstairs to free Abbey, who cut the shit out of her hands lowering her down.

While looking through the house for Jackie, they find the severed head of the dude from the opening scene inside a closet along with the dead blonde hanging from the inside of the door. They finally find Jackie in a big drawer, who’s in pretty bad shape, but alive. The brothers catch the girls on their way outta the house, but are interrupted by Mother’s screams. The girls make it to the forest, slowly, on account of having to carry Jackie. Trina goes for help while Abbey stays behind with Jackie. Damn this Rat Pack is loyal! Trina makes it to the car, but the brothers have already sabotaged it.

Night falls and Trina runs into a cop, but it’s actually Ike in disguise. She kicks him in the balls and makes a run for it. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre-esque forest chase is on! She finds a place to sit still and hide then spots an intimidating looking rock, but instead of grabbing it and saving it to bash Ike’s skull in when he approaches, she just guns it where she thinks he is. Luckily, he’s a fucktard, and makes a leap at where he thinks she is, resulting in a ridiculously long Family Guy-esque roll down a steep ravine.

Trina goes back to Abbey, but Jackie is dead. This is about the right time to Final Girl up if they wanna survive, which is exactly what innocent Abbey with the fucked up hands plans to do.

Addley and Mother are back at the house playing Yahtzee or some shit. Addley wants to chase the girls with Ike, he also wants to know the truth about his Aunt Queenie. Mother makes him promise that he’ll never leave her.

The girls wrap Jackie up and continue to carry her. They find a place to put her and now it’s time for revenge and survival.

The family is shunning Ike for losing Trina. As they turn on each other is the perfect time for Trina and Abbey to get their revenge. Addley goes to the door alone so Abbey stabs him through the neck with a car attenna and Trina claw hammers him in the balls. A lot of blood comes out too. Abbey gags him so he’ll die silently.

As they drag his body outta the house, Ike comes crashing down in some kinda pro-wrestling swan dive from the upper level. As he attacks Trina, Abbey grabs a can of Drano and shoves it into his mouth (Drano was a motherfucker in the 80’s). Ike goes after Trina (At this point, I wish Trina’s name was Tina, especially in 1980), still foaming and vomiting, but Abbey is waiting around the corner with the tv set she drops on his head, which electrocutes him. As they leave, Ike is back, and grabs Trina’s ankle for the final scare so she reaches and grabs an electric knife off the counter and finishes him.

Now for Mother. In what looked like it was going to be an odd plot-twist, Abbey says she’ll take care of her, like she always has because she’s her daughter. At first I thought she was gonna turn out to be the long lost sister, instead, she suffocates her, vicariously killing her real mom, the bitchy offscreen voice in Chicago.

Mother jumps out for one last scare, freeze frame, The End.

Afterthought: This film came out about five months after Friday the 13th so any similarities are probably not a coincidence. However, unlike Friday, this film came out nowhere near Mother’s Day. The more I look back on this film, the more I like it. It’s kinda like I Spit on Your Grave with less rape and more friends. The first 15 minutes made sense once I realized that the pool party was Trina’s party, the bitching mom was Abbey’s, while Jackie was the only one with a clear introduction cuz her boyfriend actually said her name and then she picked up the other two girls in the next scene. The E.G.O. part still doesn’t make sense other than just a elaborate shitty way to introduce Mother and sons, but 1out of 4 is better than 0.

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There were three runners up for the Badass Bitch Award: Abbey, Trina, and Jackie... And the winner is Abbey! This film was made in 1980, so the Final Girl trope was still just blossoming. Jackie was the assumed Final Girl, based on being the first named and picking the other girls up, but then she died first, which would have been clever had it been done on purpose to trick us, like Scream did with Drew Barrymore. Trina was second up, because she was loyal, talked back, and always came back for her friends. She was the most capable. It wasn’t until the end that Abbey went from good girl to badass. She kills Mother, almost as a throwback to Chicago with the screaming mother, revealing the hell she grew up in and wrapping up and tying a nice little bow around this film.

What did we learn? Survival Tips:

1) Listen to the crazy old man at the gas station!

2) Don’t go camping without a gun, and keep the gun in your sleeping bag. Sleep with a holster.

3) Watch out for bear traps!

Murder Party (2007)

Damien Ross

Jeremy Saulnier

“I was just gonna chop his dick off and light him on fire.”

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It’s Halloween as Christopher gets off work. On his way home, he finds an invitation on the sidewalk just outside of his apartment for a Murder Party. A few feet away, on his doorstep, someone has smashed his pumpkin. He goes inside and puts in a movie, Scarewolf. He says hi to his cat then makes pumpkin bread, fast, like just whipped it up off the top of his head in just a few minutes and put it in the oven. 

He then makes a medieval armor costume complete with sword out of a cardboard box and duct tape, says goodbye to his cat, grabs the pumpkin bread and candy corns, then hops on the bus. This guy is resourceful. He gets off the bus and follows the directions he printed off his computer (That’s some 2007 shit right there).

He arrives and meets two girls and three guys: Lexi, Sky, Paul, Macon, and William. Although wearing costumes, they seem caught off guard as if they weren’t expecting anyone. He looks around the place: Plastic sheet on the ground, an axe, a sledgehammer... Everything but a literal red flag. They wrestle him down and tie him to a chair, then contemplate killing him, but decide to wait for Alexander. 

While waiting, Sky eats some pumpkin bread and has an allergic reaction to the raisins. She gets dizzy and as she tries to sit she falls over and impales her head on a sharp object on the floor. She sits back up before falling over dead. The others blame Christopher so Macon pours acid over his head, but it turns out to be acetic acid, which apparently is just vinegar. Alexander calls, he’s there, but they have to hide Sky’s body before Lexi greets him. 

Alexander walks in with his dog, Hellhammer, and his new best friend, Zycho. Hellhammer is part dingo. The plan was to leave an invitation on the ground and murder whoever shows up, but they want it to be artsy and creative to impress Alexander because he somehow has $300K in grant money. Cause of death: Art. All the while, poor Christopher is tied to a chair in earshot as these arthouse douchebags contemplate his death. They decide to wait until the witching hour to kill him so he escapes the chair while they make dinner plans. They find him and tie him down again, this time with chains. Pizza for dinner.

They inject themselves with truth serum in preparation for a game of Extreme Truth or Dare. They even inject Christopher. Lexi and Macon have a past. He carries her popsicle stick around with him. Instead of asking questions or proposing dares they all just start volunteering information. Alexander reveals he actually has a half a million dollars in grant money. Christopher reveals that he shit his pants at a wedding, he works for NYPD (Just writing tickets), he didn’t tell anybody he was coming to this party, and no one will miss him if he dies. Let’s do coke!

William may have killed Hellhammer outside and is ready to get on with the murder. He is the least charismatic of the bunch. He seems more interested in death than art. 

Alexander sends Zycho for a bag of crank as the witching hour approaches then reads Edgar Allen Poe, but is interrupted by a knock on the door, followed by a woman’s voice. Paul answers and returns, it’s his assistant. Ya can’t very well do the biggest art piece of your career without your assistant now can you?

Macon goes outside to smoke, Hellhammer is alive! He and Macon have a heart to heart (Yes, Hellhammer is still just a dog) while inside Paul calls out Alexander. Macon is on fire!

Hellhammer goes inside and leads Alexander to Sky’s body. While distracted, Paul injects him with the truth serum that he apparently never took  earlier. Truth is, he’s just a fry cook, a total fraud. This whole time he has just been taking advantage of them and their pompous artistic pre-hipster mentality by playing the more “real” role as he dangled the proverbial carrot of money in front of them... There is no grant money. He planned to kill them then sell their art. Dead artist’s work is worth more than live.

Zycho returns with the bag of crank and Alexander tells him to shoot Paul in the face, shoot all of them. So he does. Hellhammer gets into the bag of crank as all hell breaks loose. Macon’s mask has melted to his face. He grabs a chainsaw and hacks into Zycho’s leg. Lexi frees Christopher then gets shot. Alexander gets his mouth bit off by Hellhammer then William beats him down with a baseball bat. Christopher tries to get the fuck outta there as William stalks him.

Christopher gets out, but now William has an axe. Christopher runs up to the fucking roof and Macon is after him too, with a chainsaw. If only his armor weren’t made of cardboard. He hides till the medication alarm on his watch goes off. He takes his medication and runs into a different party. William is still on his trail. He hides in a room, he’s found a new group of artists who are equally douchey, but less homicidal. William comes in and starts killing them all. Miraculously, Christopher somehow gets Macon’s chainsaw and it’s chainsaw verses ax. Chainsaw wins as Christopher saws through William's head. All he wanted was to go to a party. 

The sun is coming up: The witching hour came and went as he walks home, the blood still wet on his cardboard armor. He arrives home just as he did in the beginning of the film this time kicking the cat out of his chair. He sits down and turns Scarewolf back on. I’ve been there, sometimes it’s better to just stay home.

Sometimes you get so bored with your life that you think that the answer is on the other side of the front door. As I watched this film, I felt bad for Christopher. He was just a lonely loser guy who found an invitation to go out and do something, escape his misery. He probably thought it was a real party and if he had the address, it was a chance to go mix with people that didn’t know him. A chance to get away from his cat. A chance to get away from himself and the boredom of his apartment and his life.

As I compiled my notes of this film into paragraphs, I saw both sides and how everyone was a loser reaching out for acceptance and hope... Validation! The art kids wanted the grant money because grant money would validate their art, thus validating them. Christopher just wanted to go to a party and mix with people, people who didn’t know he was just some loser who could make pumpkin bread at the drop of a hat. Alexander, sure he had a murder agenda one way or the other, but he was ultimately the biggest loser of them all, which meant he needed the highest stakes for acceptance: Hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of grant money. The biggest loser is Christopher, walking home alone and realizing that people suck. It’s not you, it’s them. I’ve walked into my house with that feeling when I was younger so many times. The feeling goes like this: Those guys are just into killing you, and you don’t want to be killed, so just stay home. You're the outcast, but that doesn't mean you're wrong.

This is the same writer and director as Green Room, although they didn't feel similar until music played, but they were made a good eight years apart. This was more of a horror movie than Green Room, but as dialogue driven as both were (For horror flicks), I’d guess that Jeremy (The director) has demons he’s trying to work out so he writes, but can’t quite nail his demon down enough to decide if he wants to make horror films or a dark dramas.

What did we learn? Survival Tips:

1) Don’t go to random parties by yourself.

2) Don’t smoke while wearing a Halloween mask.

3) Don’t bring an ax to a chainsaw fight.

4) Get a chainsaw that runs on gas wtf?

The Mutilator (1984)

Damien Ross

Buddy Cooper

“You don’t wanna get struck by lightning on the beach.”

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It’s Ed Jr.’s dad’s birthday so as a surprise, Ed decides he’s going to clean all of daddy’s rifles while mom makes the cake in the kitchen. What Lil’ Ed finds out is that daddy keeps all of his guns loaded as he accidentally shoots and kills mom. Ed’s dad comes home and backhands him then pours himself a whiskey.

Fast forward: Lil’ Ed is now in college. While hanging out in a bar making plans for Fall break with friends: Pam, Mike, Ralph, Sue, and Linda, he gets a phone call and is told to call dad. His dad wants him to close down his condo at the beach. Suddenly, he and his friends have plans for Fall break, beach house! This film was originally entitled Fall Break, but they changed it once it went to VHS. Who the hell celebrates Fall break? The opening credits roll with a feel good song, called Fall Break.

I’m not sure how old these characters are supposed to be, the description says they are teenagers, all the while they’re hanging out in bars, buying beer in stores, and somehow the six of them fit inside a convertible as they drink the whole ride to the beach....

The condo is “wide” open and it looks like someone recently partied there. There’s liquor bottles and beer cans everywhere. Ed’s dad is a trophy hunter, he’s hunted everything but man. The walls are adorned with dead animal heads and fish. But little do they know, Big Ed is hiding in the garage along with his missing battle axe. Ed’s dad has fantasized about killing him ever since the “incident.” It’s almost like he knew Ed wouldn’t be able to resist coming to the condo with his friends and Big Ed sure knows how to hold a grudge, although he should feel at least an ounce of responsibility. How do you name your son after yourself and then hate the little prick?

Mike and Linda go skinny dipping in the pool at the beach. Cue the piano music. Linda gets pulled under the water and drowned. Apparently, Big Ed likes to skinny dip too. Somehow, he snuck into the pool, killed Linda, and carried her away, along with most of their clothes, all the while Mike swam oblivious. Mike gets out of the pool and finds a trail of clothes leading him back to the garage where Big Ed is waiting for him with a chainsaw(?)

The others look for Mike and Linda and run into a cop. The cop warns them to be careful, then calls in a possible 1038 (I have no idea what that is, Google it yourself). The cop makes his way back to the condo where he encounters Big Ed, who decapitates him with his ol’ battle axe. Big Ed is everywhere all at once. Is it poetic that he kills with a battle axe? Isn’t that what some husbands refer to their wives as, the ol’ battle axe? Maybe it’s mother-in-laws.

The remaining four go back to the condo and decide to play Blind Man’s Bluff, a game where all the lights go out and one person stays inside and hides while the others wait outside. Upon finding the “it” person inside you wait with him until everyone eventually finds the you. Sue volunteers to be it while the others go outside and drink a beer. Pam finds Sue first. Then Ralph. Ed is the last one out, but they don’t realize Big Ed is playing too. Ed inadvertently saves everybody by finding them just before Big Ed is ready to attack.

They all go to bed. Pam won’t have sex with Ed, but Ralph is about to get it on with Sue until she remembers that nobody locked up. Ralph, and his weird chest hair, go downstairs alone. He goes outside for one last look for Mike and Linda, then goes into the garage where Big Ed puts a pitchfork through his throat. The deaths in this film aren’t bad, but they are funny, especially the victim’s reactions. 20 minutes left and he still hasn’t killed anybody with the giant fishhook from the cover of the film.

Sue goes to look for Ralph while Pam gets some kinda premonition. She wakes up to check on the others who are missing. Sue returns and Pam decides they are leaving without the others. They split up, Pam and Ed go one way and Sue basically gets raped by the giant fishhook. Pam and Ed go into the garage and start finding the bodies. Ed hides Pam in the little room, with the corpses, then goes after Big Ed and gets knocked out. Pam comes to the rescue and saves Ed. She finds a knife and charges Big Ed. She kills him, with minimal effort I might add, while Ed Jr. acts like a bitch. They get into the car, but it won’t start. Big Ed is still alive and now he’s on the roof stabbing through the droptop with his giant battle axe. He reaches in and grabs Ed so Pam burns his hand with the car lighter then crashes him into a cinderblock wall, severing him in half. The cops show up, and despite being severed in half, Big Ed still chops off one of a the cops legs before dying. Pam and Ed wake up in the hospital. The End.

The Gilligan Award goes to Big Ed for leaving loaded rifles in an unlocked glass cabinet for anyone to just walk in and start shooting. The Badass Bitch Award goes to Pam for saying no to sex, which is important in a horror movie. She also stabbed Big Ed then chopped him in half with the car and in the process saved Lil’ Ed.

What did we learn? Survival Tips:

1) Put a Lock on your gun cabinet.

2) Don’t go outside alone at night.

3) Don’t split up.

 

Microwave Massacre (1983)

Damien Ross

Wayne Berwick

“May is in the microwave? Oh well, that’s the way she woulda wanted to go.”

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A hot girl, known only in the credits as “Knothole Girl,” struts by a construction site. She sticks her naked breasts through a cut out in a fence then almost gets raped by Philip and Roosevelt while Donald eats his lunch.

The local bar/strip club, “Mr. Caspers,” is run by the bartender, Sam, who hates talking to people. The locals come in and want to express their problems, but Sam wants nothing to do with them. Donald, Philip, and Roosevelt go there everyday after work.

Donald has food issues. All he wants is a bologna sandwich, but his wife, May, has a giant new microwave and no cooking talent, or maybe she just cooks food he doesn't like. Were microwaves originally roughly the size of a refrigerator? I know computers were originally about the size of a room, but microwaves? Isn’t there a reason they call them “micro” waves? More like “macro” wave, high five. Donald goes home. His neighbor is a nympho who always has dudes over, which has nothing to do with the plot whatsoever, she just is.

Donald hates May, and her mangy little dog, but he hates her exotic cooking endeavors even more. He’s kind’ve a typical Mr. Roper/Al Bundy type: No sexual appetite while his wife feels starved. They haven’t had sex since 1962. He kinda reminds me of Polly from the Rocky movies. He looks like Burt Young and Patton Oswalt had a kid.

The next day, Knothole Girl is back, dressed even skimpier than the day before and Roosevelt is on the prowl, but she wants a bigger, more muscular guy. She’s basically cruises the construction site trollin' for dick, but the guy who meets her physical requirements just happens to be gay. Stereotypically 80’s gay.

Donald’s life sucks. It’s almost like he eats shitty food, so May puts him on a special diet for his health, but that is not the case. People didn’t really worry about that kinda shit till the 90’s. He just seems to resent her. She stays home while he works all day so he gets drunk at night and attacks her for cleaning and cooking. He hates the microwave, “the deranged toaster.” He finally snaps and strangles her then proceeds to beat her with a huge pepper grinder. In the morning he doesn’t remember a thing till he finds May’s body in the huge microwave. He goes to work and gets lunch off the roach coach.

After work, he hacks May’s body up and puts it in the freezer. Afterward, he wakes up to a newscast on t.v. or maybe he is dreaming, but he gets inspired, the perfect crime: Eat all the evidence. He goes to the freezer and eats May’s hand, despite it still being frozen. This would have been a good time to use the ol’ defrost feature on the microwave.

The next day, Donald packs one of May’s limbs for lunch and shares it with Philip and Roosevelt who think it’s delicious. After work, Donald goes to the bar and meets a prostitute. He takes her home, but nervous about sex, he instead does household chores. He finally has sex with her then suffocates her with a pillow and has his first cigarette since 1962.

He brings another girl home, in a chicken suit, and kills her too. Donald can’t get excited about girls unless he imagines eating them afterward. At minute 56, Donald uses the microwave for the first time.

May’s worried sister comes over. She catches onto Donald so he ties her up and puts her in the closet.

Donald goes to the doctor. He needs a pacemaker, dun dun dun... Get it?

Donald’s sexual appetite grows as his desire for human flesh grows. Human meat. Why do they always say human flesh, like cannibals are just deep frying the skin and making human pork rinds?

Donald gives Philip and Roosevelt rides to and from work everyday as well as make their lunches, like a father figure, till one night Philip and Roosevelt go over to Donald’s to watch wrestling one night and find Donald dead on the floor. Inside the microwave they find human limbs. The movers come and find May’s sister in the closet still alive. Then they remark that the microwave is a death trap for anyone with a pacemaker, because the wires were crossed, even though most microwaves in convenient stores used to have handwritten notes warning of that same danger.

This deliberate piece of crap had a lot of directions I expected it to go, but it didn’t. Maybe that’s what was good about it. Donald’s (Jackie Vernon) bad acting and complete lack of emotion to anything going on around him led me to believe this would end up a dream or that his wife wasn’t really dead and he was just having a fantasy while she was out of town. There really was no climax, it was a steady stream with ridiculous, although funny, lines and characters woven in and out which served no real purpose. It coulda been a social commentary against technology, but I think most people were pretty stoked when microwaves came out. I always thought the term “Nuclear Family” came from the microwave: You nuke dinner and then eat together. It also coulda been ahead of its time against bad diet, although a microwave is hardly the solution to a shitty diet. Jackie Vernon also played the voice of Frosty The Snowman so this film may forever change the way you view those cartoons.

The Badass Award, for the first time, goes to an inanimate object, the pacemaker. Even though this film made it a point to point out Donald’s cause of death, by now, keeping your pacemaker away from microwaves is pretty common knowledge. Coincidentally, Jackie Vernon died of a heart-attack four years later. Even the movers who discovered Donald, his cause of death, and his sister-in-law tied up in the closet showed a complete lack of emotion to the situation. The only emotion ever on display was Roosevelt when he got horny.

What did we learn? Survival Tips:

1) Hide your wife’s severed head before you answer the door.

2) Stay away from microwaves if you have a pacemaker.

3) Don’t go home with creepy old men.

My Bloody Valentine (1981)

Damien Ross

George Mihalka

“Beware of what you make fun of you little asshole!”

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This film opens with two miners getting it on in a mine until the male kills the female, which really has nothing to do with the rest of the film. If anything, it’s ahead of its time cuz this is how all of the early 2000’s remakes and sequels began: An opening scene to show or remind us what a badass the killer is.

Thursday, February 12: A mining town, as a bunch of young miners get off work. These boys know how to have fun. Nothing like talking about sex while showering with all your buddies. The hillbilly music kicks in, the boys all get in their cars, and suddenly, it’s light outside. Did they just stay up all night? They go to the clubhouse where the Valentine’s dance is going to take place (This must be filmed in Canada cuz they’re all drinking Moosehead).

Chief Newby enters holding an unlit tobacco pipe, what a doosh. Newby then gives Mayor Hanniger, who just received a Valentine, a ride. The Valentine has a note attached, it’s a warning. He opens the heart-shaped box and instead of chocolate, there’s a human heart inside. “This can’t be happening again,” he dramatically repeats over and over. This must have happened before.

The miners are now hanging out at the local bar. Have they really not slept yet? Happy, the barkeep, is the harbinger of death. He tells the story of the Valentine’s dance of 1960: There was an explosion inside the mine and they only found one survivor, Harry Warden. Harry spent some time in a psych ward and the following Valentine’s Day he came back. He killed the mining supervisors and cut out their hearts. He seems to have a serious issue with Valentine’s Day dances, as if Valentine’s Day had anything to do with the explosion in the mine. Happy says he comes back every year. It’s a small town, how are they not prepared for this? That’s worse than the Pacific Northwest and snow. How have these kids never heard this story before?

Mayor Hanniger’s son, TJ, left for awhile and now he’s back. His girlfriend, Sarah, has moved on and his dad put him to work in the mine. Isn’t that the opposite of the stereotype? If you’re a mayor, you don’t want your kid doing blue collar work, you want him going to school and following in your footsteps. Maybe Hanniger is just really insecure and doesn’t want his son outdoing him. But TJ is angry, I feel a red herring setup.

The killer awoke before dawn. He put his boots on, then he walked over to the laundromat to drop off a Valentine. A woman walks in, reads the attached note, then gets attacked, pick-axe death.

Elsewhere, at the junkyard, I assume these three friends are high cuz it’s after dark and they are heating up food on the radiator of a car. TJ and Axel are not too far away getting drunk while Axel plays a harmonica. The killer is watching. Now that TJ is back, Sarah is with Axel, and everybody is giving him shit for leaving. Are they still trying to set up the red herring, even though we just saw everybody from the killer’s POV?

The next day, Mayor Hanniger and Chief Newby are on the case while Sarah is trying to decide between Axel and TJ. Newby discovers Mabel’s body at the laundromat, she fried in the dryer. That’s one serious dryer. Hanniger is obsessed with Harry Warden and that it’s happening all over again while Newby wants to keep it on the DL. Hanniger cancels the dance, thinking that will solve everything.

TJ takes Sarah to the river, or lake, some body of water. Nobody knows where TJ went when he disappeared or why. Now he’s trying to win her back.

With the dance canceled, everybody hangs out at the bar and decide to have their own party, but where? Why don’t they just hang out at the bar for Valentine’s Day? It’s the same thing, parties are for people who aren’t old enough to get into a bar, and the bar cleans up your mess. They decide to have the party at the clubhouse by the mine. Happy is pissed and decides to take matters into his own hands, but while preparing a scare he becomes the next victim.

The following evening as the festivities are beginning, Newby gets a present, a heart-shaped box. There’s no human heart inside, however it is from Mabel, you know, the woman who died a few days ago. Newby walks around smoking his unlit pipe like he thinks he’s Sherlock Holm’s as he discovers another heart-shaped box. This time it’s bloody and there’s a note attached letting him in on the party.

At the party, TJ and and Axel get into a fight over Sarah until Lucas breaks it up. Axel goes outside alone with his beer.

Killer Filler: Some girl waiting for some guy to return with beer, John and Sylvia. He returns and finds her corpse hanging in the shower and guess who’s not getting laid tonight....

It’s that point at the party where it’s time to take a ride through the mine, which pisses TJ off cuz there’s a rule against women going inside the mine. They all go anyway, but TJ stays behind... Because he might be the killer, dun dun dun! (He’s definitely not the killer, but nice try movie)

Back at the clubhouse, a blonde finds a human head in the fridge just as John comes back, then Axel. They know what’s going on, but Sarah and the others are already in the mine. TJ and Axel must suck it up and join forces. They evacuate the clubhouse and go after the others. Conveniently, TJ volunteers to check out the abandoned section of the mine, you know, cuz he’s not the killer.

More Killer Filler: A random couple making out. Oh wait, it’s Mike and Harriet, part of the group that came into the mine. After they meet their demise The others hear a noise, it’s the killer smashing lights with his pickax.

Chief Newby runs into a few people that left the clubhouse. He finds out about the current killings and the mine. He calls every unit and makes his way.

TJ finds the others and warns them they need to leave. For some reason he’s wearing a little scarf tied around his neck like Fred from Scooby-Doo. Was that really a thing back then? He’s also revealing a lot of chest hair.

Who wore it better?

Who wore it better?

Lucas finds Harriet and Mike’s corpses, then he finds the killer, then death finds him.

Sarah, Patty, and Howard (I’m throwing these names out as I learn them) stumble upon Lucas’ corpse. The killer is approaching, but the girls can’t get their shit together so Howard just bails on them. Sarah slaps the shit outta Patty and Axel finds them. We’ve still yet to see TJ and the killer in the same scene, dun, dun, dun! (I’m kidding, he’s definitely not the killer)

They find TJ just as Newby approaches the scene. They try to get out as he tries to get in. We’re down to TJ, Axel, Patty, and Sarah. TJ and Axel are both wearing mining suits, just like the killer!

Axel falls into the water, and then there were three. TJ disappears, then there were two! Two girls who weren’t even supposed to be in the mine to begin with! Make that one girl as Patty gets killed while TJ is MIA and coincidentally, Sarah is the last one standing, but now TJ is back. As he rescues her, the killer shows up, finally placing him and TJ in the same scene and it’s time for a little railway standoff.

The police arrive.

The killer is about to kill TJ till Sarah intervenes with a large rock, which leads to the big weird reveal, the “pull an ending out of your ass” scene: Axel has a flashback of watching Harry Warden kill his father while he hid under the bed??? They kill him, but once the cops arrive, we find he is still very much alive, setting up the sequel that never was. As he disappears, he’s singing and laughing, like the Skittles’ Rabbit. The End.

https://youtu.be/7HEF49nMsM8

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The Badass Bitch Award goes to Sarah?! All she really did was hit the killer with a rock, but she put up with a lot of emotional bullshit in the meantime.

What did we learn? Survival Tips:

1) Don’t get it on in a mine!

2) Don’t leave a party alone!

3) Don’t separate in a mine!

My Bloody Valentine (2009)

Patrick Lussier

“Happy fucking Valentine’s Day.”

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Via newspaper clippings and a VO, the opening credits tell the story of a mine that collapsed, but that’s not what killed the miners inside. They were killed by a pickaxe. Harry Warden was the sole survivor and is now in a coma. He killed his fellow miners to conserve air.

Harry awakens and escapes the hospital, leaving a bloody massacre behind. Tom ‘Mutha fuckin’ Atkins is the sheriff on the scene! Although I’ve never been in a coma, I’m pretty sure that upon waking up you'd feel kinda weak, thus making it hard to rip multiple people apart and another in half. What is he even using for a weapon? There are hearts drawn on the walls and mirrors in blood and in a heart-shaped box fulla chocolates is an actual human heart.

Elsewhere, Irene and Axel are waiting for Tom H. and Sarah because the party is about to go underground. Party at the mine! Axel is Kerr Smith, the gay kid from Dawson’s Creek who seems to always plays an asshole in horror movies. Tom H. and Sarah arrive. Axel hates Tom H. and apparently, Valentine’s Day is a big deal in this town. Knowing there’s a party in the mine, somehow Tom H. forgot his beer in the car so he sends Sarah in alone, he seems afraid of the mine. Some guy scares Sarah, pretending to be Harry Warden. The real Harry Warden kills him in a pretty cool kill scene. Was it really Harry or is Tom H. not really grabbing the beer? Whoever it is, he’s now after Sarah and her see- through shirt. She follows a trail of corpses before Axel saves her. Less than ten minutes in and the body count is stacked. The killer goes after Sarah, Irene, and Axel. Sarah saves Axel’s ass and they pass Tom H. as they run to the car. It looked like Tom H. got killed and the car must have a strong ass windshield because the thrown pickaxe doesn’t go all the way through and kill the girls. They leave Tom H. behind and he is definitely not the killer. Harry is about to kill Tom H. when there’s a gunshot, it’s Tom Atkins. He shot Harry, but Harry escapes.

This is a 3D film so all the CGI death scenes look kinda weird if you're not watching it in 3D and I shoulda known that such a high death count thrown at me in such a small amount of time would lead to an “X amount of years later.”

10 years later: Axel is now the sheriff and he and Sarah are married. Maybe that’s why he hated Tom H. and left him to die in the mineshaft: He’s had a crush on Sarah all along! Meanwhile, he is fucking one her employees, Megan, in his abandoned shack. Megan gave him a Valentine that read, “Be mine 4 ever.” She is significantly younger. Get it, be mine? This story takes place in mine....

Tom H. is back in town and plans to sell the family mine. He checks into a motel where coincidently, Irene is fucking some dude in the room next door. Tom H. has a pill problem. Irene finishes up with the Stone Cold Steve Austin looking trucker and discovers that he was recording all along. He gives her some money and leaves. She goes after him, still naked, and with a gun. Harry is waiting for Stone Cold in the truck. Pickaxe to the head and now Irene is on the run. He finds her... Axel is on the scene the next day. Irene’s heart was ripped out.

Tom H. pays Sarah a visit at her store. He’s been away the last ten years, like he got outta Dodge the night he almost got killed in the mine. Megan overhears their conversation and gets a plotting smile on her face. Sarah goes home and looks at an old picture of her and Tom H. Axel calls Sarah to tell her that Irene has been murdered. Conveniently the four of them are reunited, kinda. Why was Harry in Stone Cold’s truck?

Inside a bar, Tom Atkins is having a drink as usual. Tom H. shows up and Tom Atkins’s group of friends attack and blame him for everything. An old man punches Tom H. right in the face. They think Harry came back because Tom H. is back. So why didn't Harry go after Tom H. at the motel instead of stalking ol’ Stone Cold?

Sarah catches Axel watching Irene’s sex tape. There’s a part on the tape where you can see Tom H. passing by the window, putting him at the scene of the crime. Axel knows Sarah saw Tom H. earlier that day cuz she left the picture of the two of them out. Still, Axel’s got a lot of nerve calling her out and giving her a guilt trip while he’s fucking little Megan. Granted, the only reason it bothers him is because had Tom H. never left she wouldn’t have married him, she’d still be with Tom H.

Tom H. goes to the mine to see Ben, but winds up getting captured by Harry who then goes over and attacks Red who actually whoops his ass until he makes a fatal mistake. Harry then stares down Tom H. before walking away as I try to figure out what Harry’s goal is. What the hell does Harry want?

Tom H. is in the hospital with Ben getting his shoulder stitched up when Sarah arrives and it turns out Axel was hiding in the room all along. The miners had to rescue Tom H. from where he was captured, which should have made it obvious that he didn’t kill Red and that there was somebody else there. Axel assures Tom H. that Harry is dead because after that night in the opening scene, the town dads went after Harry and killed him Freddy Krueger style. So why doesn’t Harry go after the dad’s that tried to kill him? They go to the burial site, but there’s no body.

Tom H. is now on a mission to find Harry. He also no longer wants to sell the mine and is going to stay in town. While out in the woods Tom H. stumbles across Axel’s love-shack, but there’s nobody there. I assumed this would be where Tom H. caught Axel with Megan giving him the dirt he needs to get Sarah back. Nope.

Back at the store, Sarah and Megan find themselves in a little game of cat and mouse after hours where Megan may or may not have been killed. Sarah hits the alarm after it’s all over instead of doing it the moment they locked themselves in the office. Axel shows up and as much as Tom H. has been the red herring this whole film, it is Axel who mysteriously always shows up at the right time. I think Megan is alive and Axel was trying to kill Sarah. Nope, Megan is really dead. Heart ripped out. In blood on the wall above her reads, “Be Mine 4 Ever,” just like the Valentine she gave Axel, the one Tom H. just found at the love-shack. Apparently, Sarah knew about Megan and Axel all along and now Tom H. is back to being the suspect.

Sarah is driving with Tom H. when Axel calls. It turns out Tom H. has been locked up in a mental institute for the past seven years, which is probably where he developed his pill addiction. Sarah steers Tom H. off the road and crashes the car nearly killing them both. She then makes a run for it and calls Axel. He tells her to go to his love-shack, which is where Tom H. was trying to take her in the first place. Inside said love-shack she finds the heart-shaped box and card from Megan, which also contains the picture of Tom H. and Sarah so now she is having doubts. Two men are fighting over her and one of them wants to kill her, but she doesn’t know which. The pantry is full of heart-shaped boxes. Either Axel is a huge Nirvana fan or he’s the killer.

The killer chases Sarah into the mine, then he’s gone and Axel and Tom H. arrive. Sarah has Axel’s gun and it’s time to play Which One Of You Is The Real Killer? Tom H. sucks at this game as he reveals a little too much information about Megan’s death, details you could only know if you were there. Apparently, it wasn’t such a coincidence that his motel was right next door to Irene. All along, he was planning to come back to town and kill them all. Tom H. and Axel fight until Axel gets wounded so Sarah blows up Tom H., but Tom H. is not really dead. He kills one of the search party miners, takes his suit, and escapes. The end.

The Badass Bitch Award goes to Sarah, for saving Axel that first time, trying to save Megan despite knowing she was fucking her husband, then blowing up Tom H., even though he was her first love and even though he didn’t die.

What did we learn? Survival Tips:

1) If you’re in a mine and stumble upon some corpses, don’t start yelling, “hello” and making your presence known.

2) Get dressed before you go outside.

3) Don’t leave your cell phone behind.

4) Don’t go into the mine!

Miner’s Massacre (Curse Of The Forty-Niner)(2002)

Damien Ross

John Carl Buechler

“What’s that saying, 'Rip off yer head and shit down yer neck'? He invented that.”

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The score during the opening credits kinda sounds like the Tales From The Crypt theme as animated pictures tell the backstory of the miner or forty-niner... What the hell is this movie called? My DVD says Miner’s Massacre so that’s what I’m going with. Although, the forty-niner actually had a curse while the Boston Massacre had more kills than this miner so here we are.

In the opening scene there is a skeleton on the ground beneath 6 candles, a pentagram, and a pickaxe. Dust blows, bringing the skeleton back to life. Jared is in a nearby cabin drinking wine and weighing gold. He is the first victim of... Whomever this bad guy is.

Elsewhere, Claire, Jared’s sister, gets a call from her worried mom. Her boyfriend walks in with a letter from Jared with a piece of gold inside. “Wanna go on a camping trip?” She asks.

Next we meet Axle and his girl, Tori, driving. They appear to be lost and she needs to pee. They stop by a farmhouse and meet the harbinger, with an outhouse. He warns that if they keep going they’ll meet the ghost of the forty-niner, Jeremiah Stone, who’ll skin them alive. The harbinger keeps a wanted poster rolled up on his porch that’s been in his family for generations that he sells Axle for a mere $40. Inside, on is his printer, he has dozens more. Axle got scammed. Then the harbinger gets gotted.

Hayden and Rox Ann meet up with Axle and Tori plus Claire and Nick from earlier. It’s a couples retreat and they’re on a hunt for gold in Suttersville, a ghost town that I hope is supposed to be a tourist attraction cuz there’s no way in hell that passes for an actual strip left over from the 1800’s. Two of the couples look for a place to fuck while Axle has to find his watch that Tori’s mom got for him. How does your watch just fall off without you noticing? He meets Eve, who has his watch. Sheriff Frank Murphy shows up. He points them to the campground then warns them to stay away from the mineshaft. Tori gets jealous of Axle flirting with Eve right in front of her so she takes the car and leaves. She sees Jeremiah, the forty-niner, and crashes into a tree. As she comes to, Jeremiah yanks her out of the car and decapitates her. So far, all the kills are offscreen.

The others find Jared’s car, but no Jared. They also find his backpack and map. Eve warns them that everyone looking for gold dies and to leave, then she runs away. That’s two girls Axle has lost. Cue the lame music. They find the mineshaft and soon find the gold. Now would be a good time to take the gold and get the hell out of there.

Back at home, Eve is filling her Aunt Nelly in on what’s happened. Aunt Nelly believes there's a curse, but Eve wants to save them. Aunt Nelly runs over to Caleb’s house, Caleb is John Kreese from the Karate Kid and has looked the same his entire career. He is drinking and having sex with Bertie who is significantly younger. Aunt Nelly wants him to do something cuz Eve is going to die.

The group grow tired from all the gold they’ve carried so they decide to get the rest later.

Eve goes into Jared’s cabin and finds Tori’s head in a pot on the stove. Then Jeremiah finds her and gives her the ol’ pickaxe to the gut. For some reason he likes to catch the blood in a pail.

It’s finally night time and the group is gathered around a fire talking about how they’re gonna spend their gold. They go their separate ways. Axle gets bubble guts from the cold can of chili he ate and tries to shit in the woods. I’m starting to wonder how many times Hayden and Rox Ann are gonna fuck before they finally get killed. This is the third time so far. Despite access to a cabin, everyone is either fucking, shitting, or having a heart to heart outside.

The sheriff shows up and scares the shit out of Axle, literally. Hayden thinks the sheriff is after their gold. Hayden has a gun. Jeremiah shows up. Bullets don’t hurt him. He kills Rox Ann and the chase begins. They find Hayden’s car. Hayden gets in and leaves them. Jeremiah hops onto the hood, which causes him to crash into a parked pickup? And then there were three.

They run into Nelly. She takes them to her cabin and tells them the story of Jeremiah: He pickaxed the preachers daughter in front of the townspeople so they shot him multiple times. He dropped, but didn’t die so the preacher was gonna pickaxe him. Instead, Jeremiah bit off his own thumb and spit it at the preacher saying he cursed anyone who touched his gold, then jumped down the mineshaft. So touching his gold brings him back... And Jeremiah may have been on PCP.

They plan to return the gold, but Jeremiah pays them a visit while Nelly explains how to fight him with fire and now Nelly is on fire! They grab a flare gun and escape. The plan is to return the gold and then shoot the shit outta Jeremiah with flares when he shows up. Nick chops off Jeremiah’s hand so he breaks the pickax handle and stuffs it down his stump a la Ash, Evil Dead 2. He shows up just as Nick and Axle are finishing up the dynamite trap. Apparently, they have flares and dynamite. Claire shows up with the flare gun and shoots. He falls down dangerously close to the dynamite and is now the third person in this flick to catch on fire. Claire and Nick escape, but Axle stays back, says something unintelligible, then pushes Jeremiah onto the dynamite blowing up the mine shaft.

Suddenly it’s daylight and Claire and Nick haven’t moved. Claire still has some gold in her fanny pack that she forgot about. Sheriff shows up. They wait in his car while he investigates. He finds the fanny pack and Jeremiah jumps out of the ground. Credits roll.

The Gilligan Award goes to Jared for being the first to touch Jermiah's gold and bringing him back to life.

What did we learn? Survival Tips:

1) Read the chili ingredients before you eat it.

2) Button and zip up your pants before you run for your life.

3) If you are on fire: Stop, drop, and roll. I learned that in kindergarten. I don’t know why they taught us that. That’s a good way to freak out a five year old, “At some point this school year you may catch on fire...”

 

Mountaintop Motel Massacre (1986)

Damien Ross

Jim McCullough

So Evelyn kills people, but I don't know why. It might have had something to do with religion.

A storm leads two sets of people to the motel, which plays out a little like Vacancy: Evelyn has movable floorboards that allow her into each room and somehow nobody can hear her when she sneaks up behind them. She may also have mind-control over animals because she starts out by killing a rabbit, then gets a snake to bite a guy's face, then there were mice, but they didn't really do anything.

The 70's porn-star-looking guy acted like he was gonna do something, but really never did anything. All he did was leave his girl alone, call the police several times, wander around the motel basement.... Wait, did he kill Evelyn or was it the sheriff? I don't know, this movie was kind confusing.

At the very end, we see a creepy girl walking toward the cop car, which is stuck in the mud until it gets unstuck, and then it drives away. The credits roll, and I don't even think any of the characters had any idea that the creepy girl was even there.???

Most Likely To Die (2016)

Damien Ross

Anthony Diblasi

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A group of friends from high school meet up the day before their 10 year reunion. The meeting is at Ray's house, a pro hockey player who just got cut, but is now nowhere to be found. His girlfriend, Ashley, is the first to arrive and the first to die.

There are enlarged portraits from their senior yearbook with "Most Likely" captions beneath. This school seemed to have a "Most Likely" category for every senior. My school had like 12.

The others arrive and are apparently still organizing the reunion even though it's the day before.

Gaby didn't realize her ex-boyfriend Brad, who is now a famous actor, was going to be there. She still holds a grudge against him for cheating on her with Ashley oh so long ago. Brad brought his supermodel girlfriend, Bella. Their motive was to get poker tips from Gaby, who is now a famous poker player, which this movie constantly shoves down your throat. We get it, she's a pro poker player. Bella has an upcoming poker benefit.

They look through their yearbooks and come across a picture of John Doe, who's face is scribbled out and his forehead reads "DIE." John was a kid they picked on and bullied who eventually got expelled senior year for having a gun in his locker. The picture was a prank that they all got in trouble for. Simone was class president and on the yearbook committee.

Tarkin was kind of an unnecessary character. He didn't graduate with them, he was just some loser who owned a liquor store, but lost it and now he takes care of Ray's house when he's out of town.

After getting ut of hot tub, Bella goes to her room to change back into her regular clothes right in front of the window with the curtains wide open where Tarkin is standing in plain sight watching. She later acknowledges she knew he was watching, but she left the room before she could see him get killed.

After Gaby rejects Brad's offer to help Bella she walks alone and discovers the shed. Inside she finds Ashley's body, throat slit, adorned in lights with her name spelled out. She was "Most Likely To Have Her Name In Lights."

Bella gets killed by the "Cap n Gown" killer who actually uses his Cap as a weapon. Each point of the square cap is razor sharp. What? And by the way, there's no cell phone reception.

They suspect that Ray must be the killer since he is the one missing. Maybe after losing his hockey career he lost it? John Doe is the obvious suspect though and as the body count rises, they are all killed in the fashion of what they were most likely to be.

In an abrupt and unnecessary plot twist we learn that neither John Doe nor Ray is the killer, it's DJ as he kills Lamont. It turns out that before bullying John Doe his whole life, they were all once friends. It was Ray who convinced DJ to put the gun in John Doe's locker to avoid getting expelled for the yearbook prank. Years later, DJ ran into John Doe and everything was cool until DJ confessed that it was him who put the gun in his locker and why. The next day, John Doe committed suicide. So now DJ is on a killing spree to fulfill his prophecy of "Most Likely To Get The Last Laugh."

Poker playing Gaby flips the script and kills DJ and they all escape. The room is empty except for DJ's corpse until for no reason whatsoever we see an unknown person snag the cap n gown suit and the credits roll. Why? Why the need for another plot twist? It seems every time there's a mystery they have to try and trick you with curve balls unless it's a setting where they show you the killer the whole time and weakly try to get you to sympathize with him. I would have been happy with a tearjerker ending where the mask comes off and he gets everybody to admit how fucked up they were.

Overall, this movie wasn't good, but it alludes to the importance of friendships and not bullying people. Underneath the poker talk there was decent dialogue and it pulls you into that reunion deathbed talk of how you would have done things differently had you known better. Regrets. The bullies would have acted differently and the bullied would have reacted differently. High school is only four years, but four years is a huge chunk of your life when you're barely 18.

The Badass Bitch Award goes to Gaby for saving the day and knowing somehow just where to stab Brad without killing him. Pretty lenient considering he took her virginity, knocked her up, then cheated on her instead of going to the abortion clinic with her.

What did we learn? Survival Tips:

1) Don't be a peeping Tom.

2) Scream pointed this out, but I'll repeat it: Never say, "I'll be right back."

3) Don't be a bully.

Midnight Movie (2008)

Damien Ross

Jack Messitt

"I smell fear."

A doctor thinks that showing mental patient, Radford, the movie he directed about a killer who he also played in the film, would be the key to his breakthrough. Instead, Radford broke on through to the other side, somehow, leaving only random blood splatter behind.

Five years later: Bridget is the manager of the Abby Theater. Her boyfriend, along with some friends have crashed her shift to watch the anniversary of Dark Beneath, Radford's movie. The theater is empty so she goes into the movie and leaves Kenny in charge. They had heard rumors that Radford slaughtered people after releasing this movie, which is why Detective Barrons and Dr. Wayne are also in attendance. There is a total of 11 people in the whole theater.

Bridget has daddy issues. She has scars from when her dad severely abused her and her little brother Timmy. This is why horror movies make her uneasy.

Kenny is the first casualty, but nobody recognizes him when he dies on the big screen. Sully is next, who they do recognize, but they think it's an elaborate prank. It's not until they investigate the rest of the theater that they realize the blood is real and Radford can pop in and out of the movie whenever he chooses. Usually after he kills his victim, he reappears in the movie dragging the body somewhere.

They devise a plan to turn off the movie, which doesn't work, but they figure out that he preys on their fear. If they can keep from being scared he can't hurt them, which didn't work for Bridget....

Toward the end, this movie completely fell apart. Nothing you thought would get wrapped up and explained does. I don't know why Radford is killing people, how he jumps in and out of movies, why he has a bum leg, who that old bitch he lives with is, why bullets don't phase him, but a sharp object in his neck kinda does. There's a slight back story between Bridget and Josh about him moving to New York that's never mentioned again. She was abused by her dad so Radford couldn't hurt her, but he did. Everybody died really quick, but it turned out they were still alive in the room he dragged them into, although they were all gutted and maimed.

In the end, Bridget's little brother Timmy was the last man standing. Timmy is just a little kid, with no parents, and now no sister....

What did we learn? Survival Tips:

1) Always carry a spare tire.

2) Watch your back

3) Stick together.

Maniac Cop (1988)

Damien Ross

William Lustig

"As a matter of fact, didn't you try to shoot yourself a couple of years ago?

This film is almost prophetic in terms of a cop killing innocent victims so nobody feels safe. Citizens get handguns and aren't afraid to pull the trigger, even when it involves innocent cops being killed. Calling this a horror movie is a bit of a stretch. Maybe in 1988 this was just a horror movie, but to leftist media this is a documentary, except in this film, none of the victims are black.

It opens with a woman walking home alone from a long shift only to get mugged by a couple of youths, but she escapes and flags down a cop. Instead of helping her he picks her up by her neck and kills her.

The police find the body in the morning and assume it was the two youths that did it. Officer Frank McCrae looks at the body and says that there's no way two youths could have done this. Also, he recognizes the victim from the bar she worked at, he's been known to go in there for a nightcap or two.

A drunk couple stop at a red light, which was kinda funny cuz the way she told him to stop you'd think they were about to run over a baby. They sit and wait, but instead of the light turning green, a cop approaches the vehicle. He makes the driver get out, then proceeds to beat him. The passenger slides into the driver seat then speeds away.

McCrae is convinced it's a cop doing the killing, but Shaft thinks it's just some lunatic in a police uniform.

McCrae leaks information over drinks to a newswoman. Tom Atkins also played the cop in Night of the Creeps who was also kind of a lush.

An older woman's car is stalled and she sees a cop approaching so she grabs her pistol from the glove box and shoots him in the face. It's not Maniac cop.

Jack is a cop who is having marital problems. He gave it all he could, but his wife gave up, although they're still together. Jack leaves to pick up a late shift and shortly after his wife gets a phone call. The voice on the other end says she knows who Jack is. Jack's wife hasn't told him about these calls even though she's been getting them for awhile. She instead follows Jack, to a motel. She goes to the front desk and they give her the key! She walks in and catches him having an affair with Theresa, a fellow cop. Did I mention Jack's wife is packin? She draws the gun threatening to shoot, even though it was her that tapped out of marriage counseling and the only reason she was following him wasn't because she thought he was having an affair, she thought he was the killer! Hence the reason she was packin heat. Now she is suddenly jealous?

She leaves without killing anyone and then gets abducted. The next morning, the maid finds her in Jack's room with her throat slashed.

Now Jack is a suspect and they think he's responsible for all of the murders. They find all the newspaper clippings his wife had been saving in his apartment and her diary where she says that she thinks he's the killer. McCrae thinks Jack is the fall-guy and that he's also trying to protect someone, which is true. He's protecting Theresa, the cop he's having an affair with.

While undercover as a hooker, Theresa gets attacked by Maniac Cop. McCrae comes to the rescue. They go for drinks and he puts her up in his apartment where she'll be safe.

Theresa had mentioned Sally, the police den mother. McCrae finds her and spies on her talking to Maniac Cop. She's in on it! He accidentally makes the loudest noise a person being sneaky can possibly make and Sally, without hesitation, opens fire. She then says, "Oh I guess I was just jumpy."

McCrae finds out the identity of Maniac Cop: Matt Cordell. He was kind of the Mark Fuhrman of the department. The mayor had him locked up with all the people he'd locked up. He got jumped and killed in the shower. He used to date Sally and when she heard the news she tried to kill herself by jumping out a window, that's why she's got that fucked up walk and cane. But now, Sally does not agree with the degree to which he is taking his revenge because he's basically just killing whoever. Cordell proves her point by killing her.

Cordell continues his killing spree this time killing cops and Jack escapes from his cell, which frames Jack even further for more murders.

Even though Theresa is a trained police officer who has probably seen a lot of action throughout her career, for some reason she screams like a teenage scream queen anytime somebody dies.

More back story: After the shower, when Cordell got to the morgue, he wasn't quite dead so the mortician and Sally helped him because they thought he got a raw deal. Not until the very end of the movie does Cordell actually kill the mayor, the guy who fucked him over that he should have been going after in the first place instead of trying to ruin Jack's life.

I don't really know what to make of this movie. I'd seen the trailer about a year ago and I thought it looked funny. There were no funny parts, nor were there any scary parts. I assumed Bruce Campbell played Maniac Cop, but he didn't. This movie has two sequels that I will not be rushing out to get my hands on and it looks like a remake is in the works. Why? Finally, a Bruce Campbell movie I don't like. Not Bruce's fault. This is kinda known as a cult classic, but Bruce Campbell couldn't bring much of his cheezy charm to the table.

What did we learn? Survival Tips:

1) Don't walk alone at night in big cities.

2) Don't run while handcuffed.

3) Don't underestimate gimpy women with canes.

Maniac (2012)

Damien Ross

Franck Khalfoun

"Please don't scream. You're beautiful."

Frank is a single guy, a loner if you will, who works in the mannequin shop he inherited from his mother, he also happens to live in the backroom.

When he's not touching up the mannequins, he's hitting the dating sites looking for “Ms. Right,” but has no luck until the day he meets Anna, a photographer, who happens to shoot pictures of mannequins, a match made in heaven.

They hang out and get closer and closer, but wait, I forgot to mention that Frank has mommy issues, which is what keeps ruining all of his potential love interests. Well that, and he happens to scalp and kill them, then puts their scalps on mannequins.

With Anna it was different, although Anna had a boyfriend. It was only a matter of time before the murders got too close to Anna and she figured Frank out. Poor Frank.

This is a remake of the 1980 classic and although Elisha Wood is not quite as creepy as the dude from Rocky, he still does a good job, especially since the movie is shot from his POV using only mirrors to show his character. It made for an interesting take. It felt more like an indie thriller than a horror shocker and it derived more from Psycho than the original, but was still good.

The Badass Bitch Award goes to Anna for figuring Frank out and with poetic justice, stabbed him with a mannequin part. However, she waited too long, put herself in unnecessary danger, and got her neighbor killed, but still, an award nonetheless.

What did we learn? Survival Tips:

1) If you're going out for a night on the town in heels, bring an extra pair of shoes.

2) If you're coming home late and you're talking on your cell phone and realize that the power is out on your floor, keep the other person on the line until you are safely in your apartment.

3) Always be extremely careful and cautious when using dating sites.

4) Never let the killer know that you know he's the killer.