A massacre at a slumber party.
Slumber Party Massacre 1 & 2 are absolutely fantastic movies in my opinion. The first film released in 1982 and is by all means a very 70s movie. The sequel released in 1987 wasn’t as big of a hit, being more expensive and far less profitable despite arguably garnering more of a cult following in the years to follow, and it’s probably best if we forget about the third movie entirely. Directed by Amy Holden Jones (yes, the same director as the Beethoven dog movie) followed by Deborah Brock, the Slumber Party Massacre film series is a slasher parody with a fairly decent following nowadays.
The series is and has always been the work of feminist activists, and it shows in the final product. There is fairly blatant imagery of Russ Thorn holding the power drill like it’s his penis, as well as analogies to rape in the form of Thorn constantly saying things like “but I love you” and “you know you want it” as he stalks and drills young women. Some guys die in the process of the films, but they are generally seen as competition to Thorn getting to the supple young girls rather than his intended targets. And we can’t ignore the running theme of the women defeating Thorn by chopping his drill off. Given it’s his penis.
2021’s Slumber Party Massacre is a film by Danishka Esterhazy who directed another film coming to How About Notflix soon, 2019’s The Banana Splits movie. We kick off with a callback to the 90s where young Trish Davreaux (Masali Baduza) is the sole survivor of Russ Thorn as all her friends are brutally murdered in a slumber party massacre in a small cabin in the woods. I think I understand where the movie title comes from. Flash forward to modern day, and Trish has grown into the body of actress Schelaine Bennett, who plays a reclusive mom with a big drill scar on the her hand. Trish’s daughter Dana (Hannah Gonera) is heading off for a weekend with her 18 year old friends to get drunk, do drugs, and have a slumber party. This one is BYO-Massacre.
Suffice to say, the plan doesn’t go well when the car breaks down and the crew finds themselves stuck in the same house Dana’s mother was in all those years ago. The cabin across the lake is full of hot young guys with washboard abs, the kind you’d like to lick Snack Pack banana pudding off of. I don’t know what to say here other than that the movie has its actors get their tits out for our enjoyment along with the prerequisite slow motion pillow fight, but it ain’t the ladies doing it. And I’m not complaining about the gratuitous muscle-man boobage, it’s not a bad view. Don’t watch this movie with your dad. Or my dad, that’d be even more awkward.
Slumber Party Massacre is part of a series of films that I believe screwed with the public perception of what a teenager was in the 80s. The girls in the 80s movies got drunk, got their tits out, and acted really sexy. And I think it messed with people’s heads because in the context of the film these characters were like 16-18, but the actresses playing them were in their late 20s and they were very clearly in their late 20s. This film is even more confusing because you have a mixture of women who are anywhere between 18 to 28 but they’re all playing roughly 18 year olds and it only makes the clear disparity in their age even clearer. You put Alex McGregor who is an attractive 28 year old woman next to Hannah Gonera who is 19 and she looks like even more like a child by comparison.
Let’s talk about the new Russ Thorn. Russ Thorn in the original film was played by Michael Villella, a man who didn’t have much in the way of a Hollywood acting career after this film. Here he’s played by Rob van Vuuren who played The Devil in 2008’s The Devil’s Whore. Vuuren’s portrayal of Russ Thorn is pretty spot on, from the way he cricks his head back to his movements, his speech, and how Thorn runs like an awkward asshole. The Driller Killer was never particularly deep in his character, being just a dude with a power drill who attacks young women who dress provocatively. Thorn is basically the first Hollywood incel, down to the point where a character chides his female victims on why they needed to dress like sluts and entice him. Need I remind you this franchise’s screenplay was written by a feminist activist.
Everything about Slumber Party Massacre is what people would hate about these films. It’s over the top, shlocky as hell, characters blatantly do the dumbest things and get killed over it, and it’s great fun. The dialogue is crap but in a campy horror way, and there’s buckets of blood everywhere. I’d honestly be shocked if this film got anything higher than a two star rating from most critics because it’s stupid and doesn’t have a pompous message. There’s a ton of references to the prior Slumber Party Massacre films, and the characters in the prologue are named after the characters from the first film. There’s a lot of blood and frankly the only thing this movie is missing is more boobs and butts. And blood. There’s never enough blood. And boobs. And butts.
Wait for the uncensored version to come out, it’ll have more butts.