Monday, July 24, 2017

Film Review: Prom Night (1980)

Prom Night (Review)
Format Viewed For Review: Amazon Video
Netflix Streaming: No
Amazon Prime: Yes

"It's not the best or worst slasher out there. It's somewhere in the middle."

At a high school prom, a masked killer stalks and murders the students responsible for a classmate's death 6 years prior...

Prom Night is a simple slasher. It begins with a group of kids—Wendy, Jude, Kelly, and Nick—playing hide-and-seek in an abandoned building. Ten-year-old Robin Hammond joins them, but she's teased and frightened by the kids instead. She ends up falling to her death. The death is blamed on a known sex offender. Six years later, Robin's older sister Kim (Jamie Lee Curtis) and brother, Alex, prepare for their high school's prom. Wendy, Jude, Kelly, and Nick are still around, too—and each of them receive eerie phone calls from a creepy person. Eventually, the prom begins and people start dying... And, that's your plot. It leads to a predictable but well-executed ending.

Prom Night is a decent film. It's not like other slashers, though. It's not as suspenseful or creepy as Halloween or as gory and exciting as Intruder. In fact, I'd say the first half of this film was on the dull side. Don't get me wrong, I appreciated the focus on character—and I even liked a few of the characters—but it really doesn't do much. It's like you're actually watching a group of kids prepare for their prom. The last act becomes more of a traditional slasher. There are some tense chase scenes, some creepy encounters, and a few memorable deaths. It's nothing groundbreaking, but it really helps the film get on its feet. If you're expecting something gruesome or even suspenseful, you'll have to look elsewhere.

The acting was good, though. Jamie Lee Curtis performed well as the leading lady. The supporting cast was also good. Some of the 'high school students' looked a lot older than their parts, but the casting wasn't horrible, at least. The film looked good and the music was decent. The film was written by William Gray and directed by Paul Lynch. The writing and direction could have used an adrenaline-shot. The film shambles to an exciting third act for little reason. And, in the end, it still ends up feeling like just another slasher.

Overall, Prom Night is a decent movie. It's not the best or worst slasher out there. It's somewhere in the middle. If you haven't watched it and if you're a fan of the genre, it may be worth a stream. However, if you can't get your hands on it through one of your streaming services, it would probably be best if you waited. You're not really missing out on much.

Score: 5/10
Parental Guide: Some strong violence and gore.

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