Monday, October 6, 2008
Prom Night (1980, Jamie Lee Curtis)
I think people in the world of horror underestimate the importance that Jamie Lee Curtis had on our precious slasher films. In the late 70's/early 80's, she was the queen of horror and is the epitome of the naive girl who has to get tough quick to protect herself against a killer. Starting with the classic Halloween in 1978, Jamie Lee Curtis starred in six horror films before really branching out and becoming a household name. Here is one of those films...(cue disco dance beat)...PROM NIGHT!
Prom Night is the story of a group of ten year olds who accidentally cause the death of their friend. They swear never to tell anyone in fear of going to jail (you know, those jails for ten year olds). Six years later, as the now sixteen (ten, eleven, twelve...yup sixteen) year olds are getting ready for their high school prom, they each begin to get mysterious phone calls. The calls are from a person who knows what they did that summer (whoops, wrong movie). Anyway, it turns out that someone else witnessed the girl's death...and wants revenge! (mwa ha ha).
Prom Night is a mediocre thriller, probably the worst of Ms. Curtis' Holy Horror Quintilogy (is that a word? It is now). In this story, she plays the sister of the girl who was killed. Leslie Neilsen plays Jamie Lee's father, who's character really has no point in this film. The film is pretty "by the numbers" and offers little in the thrills department. Obviously cast to cash in on her new found fame in Halloween, Curtis once called the film "Disco Death", referring to the over the top use of disco dancing and music. Even the killer wears a black ski mask with glitter on it, though that was probably just so you could see the damn thing. See this film could kick any Tim Burton movie's ass as the darkest film ever made. Though I'm not sure how intentional it was because you can't see what the hell is going on half the time.
So if you have a craving for a disco themed slasher film, this would be it. Otherwise, I would just rent Halloween again. I will admit though that I do have a sentimental attachment to this film, since I watched it the day of both my Junior and Senior prom with friends. It's actually pretty amazing that I had friends, let alone prom dates!