It’s October, Chewers, and you know what that means! The leaves are falling off the trees, everything smells like smoke, candy corn once again seems like a viable foodstuff, and it’s horror marathon time. Last year I embarked on a journey into madness, wherein I reviewed 31 Full Moon Features movies in 31 days. I won’t lie, I went a little bit insane and burned myself out for a good six months afterward. So this year I chose films of a slightly higher caliber and started a bit earlier. I know it’s cheating but maybe my writing won’t suck as much this time. In honor of this being the second incarnation of my terrible idea, I’m doing sequels this year. Every movie in this list will be the second part in a series. Now I could do your basic Evil Dead 2, Halloween 2, Friday the 13th 2 and all that jazz but Halloween horror marathons should be about broadening one’s horizons so I have gone a bit off the beaten path to some lesser loved sequels to popular movies or sequels to movies you barely know exist in the first place. So let’s get started, shall we?
Slumber Party Massacre is a very feminist slasher movie and it was written and directed by women. The entire concept is a very satirical take on the usual slasher formula with a group of teenage girls checking all the boxes for slasher tropes with a subtle wink to the audience. The characters didn’t really fall into the general archetypes of the genre and the final girl was only “good” in comparison to her friends, and by a narrow margin at that. The killer was weird and creepy with an unsubtly phallic industrial drill as a weapon. The movie is bananas and I love it with all my heart, it’s up there in my top five slashers with The Burning, Tourist Trap, Intruder, and Black Christmas.
The protagonist of this film is Courtney Bates (Crystal Bernard), the younger sister of the original film’s heroine Valerie. Courtney goes for a slumber party with her friends in a new housing development. Unfortunately, Courtney is suffering from hallucinations, primarily involving a weird rock star (partial heir to Little Caeser’s Pizza, Atanas Ilitch.) It becomes apparent pretty quickly that Courtney is suffering a mental breakdown and it becomes likely that she’s just gonna go nuts and kill everyone, right? Wrong.
The movie is a slow burn, taking about 50 of its 70 minutes setting up that this is all just in her head. But then in those final 20 glorious minutes, the rock star (dubbed “The Driller Killer” in the credits) shows up sporting a ridiculous drill/guitar hybrid and begins boring holes into people. The Driller Killer laughs maniacally, breaks the fourth wall, dances, and speaks almost entirely in lines from rock ‘n roll songs (“I can’t get no satisfaction”, “Light my fire”, “This one’s dedicated to the one I love”, etc.)
It’s unclear if anything in this movie actually happens as the movie features a fake-out within a fake-out within a fake-out that itself seems to be a fake-out. The kills are inventive and gruesome and there’s a certain gorehound delight in watching all the bits of wet meat flying off as he revs the drill up to speed. The film’s gleeful attitude is endlessly entertaining and the long set-up certainly pays off.
Does It Hold Up?
Yes and no. Writer/Director Deborah Brock has certainly captured the spirit of Amy Jones’ directing and Rita Brown’s screenplay but part of what made the first Slumber Party Massacre so good was how quickly it cut to the chase. Slumber Party Massacre 2 has a satisfying finale but it certainly takes its time in getting there.
Still the over-the-top quality of the movie makes it irresistibly enjoyable. The leads are all strong and The Driller Killer is a great villain even if he is in a very small portion of the film. It’s not as good as the first but it’s just as fun!
Watch, Toss, Or Buy?
Definitely buy it.
Where Can I Find It?
There’s a DVD with all 3 films from Shout! Factory but they’re working on getting parts 2 and 3 out on blu-ray sometime next year so keep your eyes out for it.