Horror Review: ‘Bloody Homecoming’ (2013)
When high school freshman Annie Morgan, is attacked and nearly raped by her date for homecoming, her friends come to her rescue and locker the date in a room when it accidentally catches fire, killing him. Three years have passed and now they are preparing for senior year and the homecoming dance…when they all receive threatening letters…and guess what, it’s not a joke!
It seems like good old fashioned slasher films are making a comeback! With You’re Next hitting the big screen this year (and blowing me away) and many independent slashers being made, such as last year’s The Sleeper and this year’s Don’t Go to the Reunion…it’s nice to see people coming about and showing their love of horror! Slashers aren’t dead like many believe.
Bloody Homecoming has the makings of every great slasher film. You have a creepy looking killer in an awesome costume and has a specialized weapon just for him to use. Then you have the revenge plot, the fun and likable characters (thank you!!!), some nice bloody deaths, and chase scenes galore! I counted at LEAST three chase scenes in this film!!! The chase scene is a forgotten art form, so it was so swell to see it alive. Where Bloody Homecoming succeeded was in just how much fun it was. It felt like a slasher film from the 80s and it had some great homages as well. It was fun trying to spot many of them!
Where many slasher films go awry is with the characters, especially nowadays. Too many slasher films put in the most unlikable characters they can find and forget to write a good final girl (or the rare final boy) for one to root for. I like characters I can root for, so that way when they die I feel it. This film had some really likable characters. They weren’t the most developed, but I found myself liking the group and I liked their interactions. They felt like a real group of friends and also points for the fact they actually looked like high school seniors. My favourite characters were Jaclyn, the feisty best friend, Cassie, the popular cheerleader, and most of all Wade, the gay student body president! Special note to Wade and the actor who plays him, Brenden Lee Roth, because the film wrote a gay male character but he wasn’t written as “the gay guy.” He was treated in an everyday way like every other character…and best of all he never became a joke. Also he was ADORABLE and I was crushing on him the entire time.
The director, Brian C. Weed has created a nifty little film, but it is definitely flawed. While there were some creepy moments and even a couple suspenseful scenes, there wasn’t enough suspense or scares for my liking. The acting from many actors left more to be desired. Nothing awful, but these definitely weren’t the strongest actors and while some shots were good in a lot of places the directing felt a bit flat, but I think that was the low budget playing against it. Speaking of the low budget, it really did hurt the film in places. For a homecoming dance, there weren’t a lot of students. Apparently only about twenty students ended up at the dance and also apparently only four or five teachers are at this school…but this kind of added to the 80’s charm. The gore effects were decent though and looked all practical to me, but I wish the deaths had a bit more imagination. Some dialogue came off as stilted and the final girl, while likable and cute, didn’t have much to do in the final act…and the reveal of the killer was silly and lastly the fight choreography was laughable. Every kick and punch looked so bad it was obviously choreographed. Last but not least there is a teen bitch character introduced, but she is never killed off! That was a cheat. If you’re going to introduce a character like that, you need to killer her!
Now don’t let these flaws fool you into thinking I hated this movie, because I didn’t. I had a great time and for me this was a fun little slasher film. Cool killer (well before the costume comes off at least)? Check! Likable characters? Check! Bloody deaths and chase scenes? Check and check! And then there is the character of Wade, played by Roth, who would get a positive review right there! If you’re a fan of old-school slashers, check this one out. It won’t change your life, but it is fun!