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Happy Birthday to Me (1981)

R  |   |  Horror, Mystery, Thriller  |  15 May 1981 (USA)
6.0
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Ratings: 6.0/10 from 4,976 users  
Reviews: 114 user | 106 critic

At the snobby Crawford Academy, Virginia's group of friends start to go missing years after horrible events that happened to her as a child around her birthday.

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(screenplay) (as John Saxton) , (screenplay), 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
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Sharon Acker ...
Frances Hyland ...
...
Ann Thomerson (as Tracey Bregman)
Jack Blum ...
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David Eisner ...
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Michel-René Labelle ...
Etienne Vercures (as Michel Rene Labelle)
Richard Rebiere ...
...
Earl Pennington ...
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Storyline

Virginia Wainwright is a spirited young woman who has returned to a private school having survived a deadly accident and regenerative brain surgery. She is proud that she belongs to the Top Ten - the school's inner circle with the best students - and attempts to resume a normal life. But her friends are falling prey to a grueling series of murders, and soon there will be no one left to attend her 18th birthday party. Could it be her? Striving to rekindle the memory of her nightmarish accident, Virginia suffers from memory loss and traumatic blackouts. We soon learn the horrible truth behind her accident and what is going on before her birthday party... Written by Joseph Henson <gzr@cdc.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Six of the most bizarre murders you will ever see. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 May 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ab in die Ewigkeit  »

Box Office

Budget:

CAD 3,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When certain cast members were stuck in their gore make-up for numerous hours, they decided to walk around the neighborhood scaring the wits out of people. See more »

Goofs

During the surgery flashback, Ginny moans while under anesthesia. With an endotracheal tube, as was seen in Ginny's mouth, the patient's breath bypasses the vocal cords completely, so the patient effectively has no voice. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Mrs. Patterson: [to her attacking dog] Winston! Winston! Winston, just stop it, bad boy. Sit down. Sit!
Bernadette O'Hara: Oh, Mrs. Patterson.
Mrs. Patterson: Bernadette O'Hara, do you have any idea what time it is? Where are you going?
Bernadette O'Hara: Well, I, I was just going up to the village to meet some of the kids at the inn.
Mrs. Patterson: You mean the second home for the Crawford top 10, don't you?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Kite (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Happy Birthday to Me
Music by Lance Rubin
Lyrics by Molly-Ann Leikin
Performed by Syreeta
Courtesy of Motown Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Much too clever of a slasher film for it's time.
7 March 2002 | by (FrightMeter.Com) – See all my reviews

I may take a lot of grief for saying this, but I firmly believe that Happy Birthday to Me is one of most intelligent and well acted slasher films of the 80's. I think the reason that it never made as much of an impact as films like Friday the 13th and Prom Night, which were released around the same time, is that is was just TOO intelligent for its time. It was released around the time when gore and body count is what made a slasher succeed. HBTM relied on plot twists and character development. This film is comparable to something that would be released and be successful today, where plot twists are what make a "slasher movie." Melissa Sue Anderson gives a excellent performance as Virginia, a member of the elite "Crawford 10" who suffered injuries in a car accident just months before the start of the film. At the approach of her 16th birthday, her fellow classmates begin to get butchered. Yes, a lot of things about this film are very confusing, and the ending can be tricky at best to figure out, but overall it plays out well and provides just enough gore and suspense to satisfy the slasher fans, but also tries to appeal to those who want more than just a bunch of murders on film. Highly recommended. Intelligent, and very well acted by Melissa Sue Anderson. Just remember this film was made in 1981. Way ahead of its time.


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