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Diablo is a biker gang leader executed for the murder of a young woman. A year after his death, it's time for Spring Break. Football players Skip and Ronnie head to the beach, where Skip meets Gail, the sister of the woman who was murdered a year ago. All the fun and glory of Spring Break, however, is about to turn into a living nightmare when a mysterious person in a biker outfit begins to kill people by electrocution. Could it be that Diablo has returned from the dead? Written by
Nicolas De Toth and Rawley Valverde play Skip and Ronnie, a pair of college football players who, along with thousands of other like-minded youngsters, head to the beach for spring break in search of sun, sea, sand and sex. The pair's fun is interrupted, however, when they get on the wrong side of the town's local biker gang, and a mysterious killer begins to bump off the Easter revellers in truly shocking style.
Hiding behind the pseudonym Harry Kirkpatrick and shooting on location in Fort Lauderdale with an all-American cast, Italian horror director Umberto Lenzi is clearly intending to pass off this 80s slasher as a product of the US of A; to complete the illusion, he sets his sexy spring break shenanigans and murderous mayhem to a suitably loud hair metal soundtrack (he's not fooling me though: with a Claudio Simonetti score that sounds like leftovers from the Demons and Phenomena soundtracks, a really silly motorcycle that electrocutes its pillion passengers, and a daft denouement that could have come straight out of a giallo, this film's Italian origins seem only too apparent).
Whenever Lenzi's attention is focused on either the wild antics of the sex-mad teens (wet t-shirt competitions, drunken zany pranks etc.,) or the gruesome activities of the psycho killer (best death: the roasting of a young woman in front of an open incinerator), Welcome To Spring Break is reasonably enjoyable trashy fare. Sadly, the plot frequently wanders into territory far less likely to entertain, the business with the bikers soon getting tiresome and a ridiculous sub-plot about the town's corrupt officials (which sees John Saxon slumming it as a sleazy sheriff) only serving to add to the tedium.
All in all, this is a pretty uneven effort, one for those who have already seen the slasher classics and wish to explore lesser known examples of the genre, or who simply enjoy their 80s horror extra cheesy.
4.5 out of 10, rounded up to 5 for all those lovely, big-haired, 80s beach babes.
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