Rajeev Masand – movies that matter : from bollywood, hollywood and everywhere else

December 4, 2020

Prom Night review

Filed under: Our FIlms,Their Films — Rajeev @ 4:45 pm

Jul 25, 2008

Cast: Brittany Snow, Scott Porter, Jessica Stroup

Director: Nelson McCormick

Teenage slasher film Prom Night which checks into cinemas this weekend, is such a stupid horror film that it makes I Know What You Did Last Summer and its sequels seem like Shakespeare in comparison. Usually the intrigue value in slasher films comes from the fact that the killer is never who one expects it to be. There’s always some twist near the end, always something that catches you by surprise. If you ask me, the basic premise of Prom Night is all wrong to begin with.

The film stars Brittany Snow as Donna, a girl whose family is killed by a teacher who’s obsessed with her. The teacher’s packed off to a psychiatric hospital far, far away, but just when she’s getting her life back in order, trying to put her past behind her, the teacher breaks out — oh, and he does it just in time for her senior prom.

Few slasher films are as dumb as this one because few films offer nothing — absolutely nothing — in terms of interesting characters, sensible dialogue, and real thrills. There’s no real motivation or explanation provided for why the killer goes around bumping off all of Donna’s friends, and to be honest I can’t seem to understand why this prom is made out to be such a big deal for Donna and her friends when they barely seem to want to spend any time on the dance floor, choosing instead to squabble with their boyfriends most of the evening.

Prom Night is such a lame film, I can’t believe nobody involved in making this film just vomited on the script and chucked it into the shredding machine after they finished reading it. It’s meant to be a remake of the 1980 original starring Jamie Lee Curtis and trust me that was a lousy film, but this one plumbs new depths of mediocrity.

Brittany Snow has no charm and no presence at all, and as a result you don’t really care if she gets killed or not. All you really know is, if she’s got to die can they make it quick cos I don’t think I can take another minute of this trash. Jonathan Schaech plays the killer teacher and I don’t think I’ve ever seen any other actor who can hold on to the exact same dumb expression for an entire film. He doesn’t look like a teacher, and he certainly doesn’t look like a psychopath. He looks more like a poor schmuck who’s embarrassed to death to be in this film but needs the job so he can pay the rent.

Slasher films aren’t a terribly intelligent film genre, but every now and then something really good will come along. Like “Scream” which is as clever a teenage slasher film as they come. Prom Night, on the other hand, is so pathetic it doesn’t even get its obligatory killing scenes right. They’re not visceral, they’re not gory, they’re not even of the turn-your-face-sickening kind.

I’m going with one out of five and a thumbs down for Prom Night — I wouldn’t recommend it even if you have nothing better to do. Clean your cupboard or wash your car, but don’t bother with this one, you’ll thank me for my advice.

(This review first aired on CNN-IBN)

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