Return to Horror High (1987)
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Throw in Marcia Brady rubbing her breasts and one of the cleverest lines in cinema history, "What the f*** is she talking about?", and you have a true masterpiece of badness.
Plot: In 1982, Crippen High School was the scene of brutal murders. The killer was never caught. Now a low budget film crew have returned to the school to film the story of what happened 5 years ago. But when the production crew starts dying off one by one, it appears that the crazed maniac is back. Who will survive the massacre? And what will be left of their careers?
Audio/Video: Excellency as always from Anchor Bay.
Extras: Theatrical Trailer (suprisingly this is the only extra feature from Anchor Bay).
Final Thoughts: This is one of the worst slashers in the 80's, but it is not the worst. I would advise everyone to rent before purchasing just so you can see if you like it or not. If only I got that advice before I spent $15.00 on it.
This movie kicks twice as much butt when you get it on the double-sided DVD with _Return of the Killer Tomatoes! (1988)_
You got your killer, spoof ending, and a film that everyone had to believe that evrything was for real until the ending which I have to agree was a little disapointing since it was all a joke except when the real killer was found and killed which was cool. The effects werent that bad either. Its classic to see when a killer uses his hand to grab the person into the room with the lights off in a dark hallway, or when a person gets decapitated with an axe in a shadow like segment because its like watching an old who dunnit? movie. Aside from all that I suggest you watch the film carefully and it will make sense to you like it did to me. Rent it first but if your a die hard horror fan like Iam who loves horror films, especially slasher movies then buy it. LOVE the death scene of that teacher with the nails and scalpel in the dark class room, and nice F/X job on the bodies in the decaying dead classmates in the abandoned basement of the school!
A horror comedy done terribly wrong. There are some good things about this--the performances by Alex Rocco (going WAY over the top), Brendan Hughes (as the baby-faced hero) and Lori Lethin (as the final girl) are very good and there are a few funny moments. But that's it. The horror isn't even remotely scary with some of the worst special effects I've ever seen in a horror film. The script meanders all over the place and the film within a film "surprises" got tedious real quick. Also the final search and showdown with the killer goes on for 30 MINUTES!!! Then there's multiple twists and turns at the end...but it's too little too late. Basically I was bored and the lousy murders were really insulting. Also there's a truly dreadful performance by Richard Brestoff (it's so bad it's almost embarrassing to watch) and Maureen McCormick and Vince Edwards walk through their roles.
A lot of people find this so bad that it's good--but I was too bored to enjoy it. Also there's a young, handsome George Clooney in this--but he disappears within the first 15 minutes.
A rightfully forgotten horror film. I give it a 1.
Clooney gives a decent, yet brief performance as Oliver...He gets dead!
Chopping editing leads the film to be hard to follow at times, but the finale is excellent, gruesome and silly all in the same vain...Yeah the film doesn't make alot of sense, but it is a helluva fun ride.
Check out Tommy Hayette (Philip Mckeon) from Alice fame...He has a really big FAN in the movie...hee hee (oh, geez, I normally don't get cheesey in my reviews..must be the movie).
I actually own 2 copies of this movie....I'm just crazy, I suppose
8 out of 10
Things of course could have been better, maybe a MTV Fear style movie, with the kids/or adults on their own, and going through the abandoned school...
I still give this movie 8 1/2 stars out of 10.
The plot centers around a film crew that sets up shop in an abandoned high school where a series of grisly murders took place. The murderer is still at large, and one by one the cast and crew start disappearing.
Alex Rocco, as the perverted producer, Al Fann as the libido crazed janitor and Maureen McCormick, as a police officer who finds gore arousing, give the best performances here. A young George Clooney is used as our killer's first victim.
This film has received some ex post facto praise and recognition for having George Clooney. And while he is quite entertaining in the film, he is also only in it very briefly. This is hardly a showcase of Clooney talent (and good looks).
It also has an awfully terrible score. I could look up who did and call him or her out, but you know what... it is best I just let them remain anonymous.
But seriously, this is a decent little slasher film. I have seen dozens of slashers. Maybe one hundred slashers... but never saw this one until now. Shame on me. It is far from the worst, and has some decent kills and effects. Plenty of corpses, blood and all the stuff you like in a slasher film.
This movie is an ultimate cheese-fest, plain and simple. The majority of the movie is just a compilation of badly-edited scenes with lots of fake blood, campy murder sequences, and mediocre acting. The whole idea and basis of the movie is rather ridiculous, and I'll say the performances weren't quite convincing either. On a high note, the movie does feature a younger George Clooney who plays a cast member in the film, which was interesting to see. And Maureen McCormick (who played the infamous Marcia Brady on "The Brady Bunch") also appears as a female cop. But they don't really do anything to save this movie anyway. It's been a few years since I watched this movie, so the details are pretty vague to me, but overall this movie wasn't anything too great.
Bottom line is, if you like really corny horror movies, then you might enjoy this obscure little '80s horror picture. But for the majority of people, this movie wouldn't offer anything that is remotely interesting or that we haven't seen before. You'll probably want to pass on it. 3/10.
This is a movie in a movie in a movie. Think that's confusing to imagine? Just wait till you watch this movie. Some filmmakers are trying to create a horror movie based on a few slayings at a high school. They're filming in the same high school, stalked by the same killer no less. Now, while the body count is building up, you have two stories going on. The first is the keystone cop types investigating a murder while the movie (and murdering) is going on. Then, you have one of the cast members and technical supervisors trying to figure out who the killer is. There's a lot of little "fooled you" moments, but after a while, it begins to get pretty agravating when you come to ask whether or not a killer exists at all, and whether the killer is even human (and consequently, invincible...which then makes you wonder what's the point).
This "horror" movie was so stupid, it doesn't even deserve a PG rating. The special effects are simply laughable...people have made better student films in their own garages. In one scene, Maureen McCormick, who plays one of the investigating cops, picks up an arm that is an obvious piece of foam. When she shows it to her supervisor, he jumps back in horror, and she follows suit. I kept waiting for the part where she says "gotcha" and tells him she picked it up from the prop department (remember, they're filming the movie at the school). I was ready to turn off the whole thing when it came to the Scooby Doo ending. And I can't even begin to figure out what the point was of the finale "fakeout" involving the film crew.
And there's even an 80s romance sequence (with an awful 80s song), creating a scene that doesn't even seem in line with the rest of the mood of the movie. The whole movie was a mess of a bad story, poor effects, bad acting (especially from the science teacher). And it wasn't even bad enough to be funny. It was just simply bad.
Basically, what I mean is that the film itself is constructed in a way that really confuses the viewer. This isn't David Lynch we're talking here, this is supposed to be a horror comedy but some of the jokes just don't work because we're too busy trying to figure out why these random scenes come out of nowhere and whether or not we're watching the movie or the movie within the movie.
Now that may sound like a fun element to the film and indeed, if constructed the right way, it probably would have been. But alas, it pretty much... well... in all honesty... fails.
But this is definitely one of those you'll at least wanna say you saw if you're into 80's schlock.
Love the poster art though.
Beginning in the present time, exterior night, as a tough yet gentle-giant-type police chief and a doting, surreptitiously perverse female officer, played by BRADY BUNCH oldest Maureen McCormick, are outside a high school where a multi-mutilation of bodies are a mysterious result from a confusing aftermath: Then cutting back to a horror flick being shot inside the school centering on a string of deaths that had occurred years before... Confused yet?
Well there are plenty of head-scratching moments that all eventually add up to a much more worthwhile drive-in homage than most video rentals from the middle eighties. A young, mullet-donning George Clooney plays a primadonna pretty boy actor on the verge of stardom, and he's the first to walk off the safety of the set - into the ghostly halls of the spooky high school, a dry ice saturated locale that could have worked even if HORROR was more of a serious venture.
The weakest aspect (in a movie that needs anything it can to work) is no-name leading man Brendan Hughes as the former cop who was there when it happened and now, replacing Clooney, he's the film-within-a-film's star along with an actress who makes up for him, in spades: THE DAY AFTER's subtle beauty Lori Lethin plays several people - or maybe just one?
At times of utter confusion she's always fun to watch either scared to death, combating males, or being oblivious to the body count/bloodshed surrounding...
Also starring former ALICE child actor turned awkward lean teen Philip McKeon with OVER THE EDGE father and son Andy Romano and Michael Kramer along with the movie's movie's pretentious director and slimy producer Scott Jacoby and Alex Rocco plus former 1950's stud Vince Edwards, RETURN TO HORROR HIGH is a cat batting a ball of colorful string, unveiling itself creatively as it's surprisingly good: enough for horror fans to not have to take it seriously enough to feel cheated of their beloved genre, and the casual viewer could very well be entertained if they'd give in and... as the saying goes... go with it. (cultfilmfreaks.com)
Huh? Yep, huh? "Return to Horror High" is a hokey low-budget tongue-in-cheek slasher that peculiarly rips on its genre in a very confusing muddle of ideas and bizarre pathways. There's just too much going on, as the illogical story switches back and forth in a rather disjointed manner. The reason for this messy situation can be attributed to story moving between the police investigation, that of the crew actually making the horror flick with killer knocking them off and then the murders the film is based on. That's quite handful and when they gel into one. You're left rather bemused by it all and at times it hard to tell when it's just a film within a film moment. It can get tediously bog down (especially the awkward romance link) by its chattiness and little action. The "Scooby Doo" mystery piles on the red herrings and the lambs for the slaughter, but it's nothing we haven't watched before. What I found to lift this outrageously silly comic horror was that it has a real good time mocking that of stereotypes and clichés and there are a couple of fun hammy performances from the elastic cast. It simply plays for one big wicked joke.
The story's structure and overall editing might be a choppy mess, on the other-hand the production was well prepared and the setting was atmospheric. A spine-tingling score that tries to keep you on edge combined with sweeping semi-doco cinematography and gloomy lighting made that factor passable. Although the embarrassingly cheese-filled 80s soundtrack can destroy the mood in certain scenes and the humour can over-rail the menace it tries to build in the opening half of the film. On a whole, it can be lacking, but director Bill Froelich delivers some inventive flushes in a few piercing scenes. A lot of blood (if "fake" movie blood) is splashed about and nudity is dished up in minor bursts. On the other spectre, suspense is quite minimal and clumsy false jumps only reveal the real one with dire results. Actually it can get unpredictable in spontaneous spurts. The ridiculously out-there climax only proves so when it builds up towards its final outcome. This big twist is easy to understand, but how it came to be doesn't make a whole lotta' sense.
The humour is quite overwrought in its not-so-subtle style, but these playful jests in the dialogues do have its shining light. Alex Rocco gets most of the best lines and is real treat as the flat-out, obnoxious, slime ball producer. Also the likes of Maureen McCormick as the hot and bothered cop raises a few chuckles and Lori Lethin's feisty awe only engages. While, the acting teeters on lousy, the over-exaggerated turns only enhances the film's eccentric energy and likability. Oh yeah, I actually found the characters rather likable. I'm sure some people will be waiting for George Clooney to hit the screen and you don't have to wait for long, but then again he bites the dust after only about 15 minutes into the flick. Even if it was only a tiny part, his charisma was evident early on.
This spoof isn't always on the mark, but it passes time decently enough.