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Slumber Party Massacre - Advance Review

 


A group of friends end up at a cabin in the woods after their car breaks down, and drinking and screaming and blood loss ensues. 

Slumber Party Massacre is a reimagining of the 1982 movie of the same name, not a remake. Characters share names, and there are wardrobe similarities (the “Space baby” shirt, for example), but after the first ten or so minutes this becomes a very different film.
This is a reimagining, a sequel, and at times a parody, all in one. The original was one of the first feminist horrors, although it was far from perfect, it was a start, and this film attempts to build on that. An example of this was a shower scene in the original that lingered on women’s naked bodies. Here, it is subverted, and points out, without a hint of subtlety, how ridiculous and unnecessary such shower scenes are. But by choosing a tongue-in-cheek approach at times, it moves swiftly from satire to parody, from Scream to Scary Movie.
This slasher stays true to the original, by carefully choosing which deaths are cut away from, and which the camera lingers on.
The male characters are the same kind of generic tropes you would expect from 80s female characters in horror. And for anyone who have suffered through countless movies of girls in their underwear having pillow fights, the guys doing this in their house will either make you chuckle or cringe.
There are a couple of particularly gruesome deaths, but most are off-screen, making this more watchable for the squeamish than most horrors.
The jump-scares are minimal and the few that are in here fail to land – although this may be intentional. A moment of lesbian subtext feels like queerbaiting, because nothing more comes from it, but with retrospection it may be all part of the satire. Whatever the intent, it comes across cheap, as an LGBTQI+ moment for the sake of it. 

The movie has moments of beauty though, one of those being the least inspirational, least motivating, speech you’ll ever hear.
It hits, and it misses, but Slumber Party Massacre offers a modern take on an 80s slasher. It’s a good reminder to cut back on the true crime podcasts, and that no matter how much the plan may be to stick together, people will ultimately panic and run off in separate directions. And probably fall over in the process.

Slumber Party Massacre
airs October 16 on SYFY.

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