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The Initiation (1984)

While trying to understand a frightening reoccurring nightmare, a pledge is coaxed into breaking into her father's department store by her sorority sisters, where a deranged killer targets the girls and their boyfriends.


Larry Stewart, Peter Crane (uncredited)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Vera Miles ... Frances Fairchild
Clu Gulager ... Dwight Fairchild
Daphne Zuniga ... Kelly Fairchild
James Read ... Peter
Marilyn Kagan ... Marcia
Robert Dowdell ... Jason Randall
Patti Heider Patti Heider ... Nurse Higgins
Frances Peterson Frances Peterson ... Megan
Hunter Tylo ... Alison (as Deborah Morehart)
Paula Knowles Paula Knowles ... Beth
Trey Stroud Trey Stroud ... Ralph
Peter Malof Peter Malof ... Andy
Christopher Bradley ... Chad
Joy Jones Joy Jones ... Heidi
Mary Davis Duncan Mary Davis Duncan ... Gwen


Kelly Fairchild has become a college student and a member of the Delta Ro Kai sorority. During all her life, she has suffered from a nightmare where a man is burning. She meets an assistant professor who can help interpret the dream. The sorority's initiation ritual is a nighttime breaking-and-entering into her father's department store. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


They pledge themselves to be young, stay young...and die young. See more »


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »






Release Date:

7 December 1984 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Iniciação See more »

Filming Locations:

Dallas, Texas, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Marilyn Kagan, who plays "Marcia," went on to host a top-rated radio show, on KFI in Los Angeles. As she is an LCSW (Licensed Clinical Social Worker,) she took calls from listeners, and answered their therapeutic questions. See more »


During the beginning of the initiation ritual, the girls' chanting does not match their lip movements, and many of the actresses are clearly not speaking at all. See more »


Peter: I suggest you take two aspirin and go right to bed.
Alison: With whom?
See more »

Alternate Versions

The UK video version was pre-cut by 59 secs with edits to a man on fire during a nightmare scene, shots of a man being stabbed with a rake, and a sequence which intercuts the stabbing of a woman with a sex scene. The 2003 Pegasus DVD is fully uncut. See more »


References Black Christmas (1974) See more »


Stop Following Me
Written by Terrence Murphy
Performed by Refugee (Terrence Murphy, Kenny Griffin, David Broussard, Reb Burall, Ronnie Griffin, Geoffrey Schulman (Mgr))
Represented by Sparks Agency
See more »

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User Reviews

a gruesome film
16 July 1999 | by baumerSee all my reviews

Have you ever had dreams that were so scary that you wished they would just stop. You don't really tell anybody about them because after all, they are just dreams and you don't want to sound silly. But that dream is just so intense that it really gets the best of you.

So is the premise for this film. What is kind of fascinating is to see Daphne Zuniga in a pre-Sure Thing role. When I think of Daphne, even all of these years later, I think of her as the prude Allison from The Sure Thing. But she is not a prude in this film. Quite the contrary. Here she gets naked, has blood as a part of her waredrobe and she has a great scream.

What is memorable about The Initiation is that it is quite scary and it is filled with blood and gore. This is a typical 80's slasher flick but it is fairly well done. And the end of it will scare you, at least the end of it will. But I feel the film does a great job of making us scared and that adds to the intrigue for the last fifteen minutes. Check this one out. It may surprise you. Believe me it is better than almsot any horror film that "graces" our screens today. But then again, all 80's horror films had that feel to them. And sadly the modern era of horror films is lacking. The Initiation is at least a good horror film. And it is from the 80's to boot. That makes it worth looking at.

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