‘The Faculty’ Retro-Review

Director: Robert Rodriguez

Starring: Elijah Wood, Josh Hartnett, Jordana Brewster, Clea DuVall, Salma Hayak, John Stewart, Robert Patrick

Plot: A group of high school students suspect that their teachers are from another planet. They’re right.

Review: In the late 1990’s, horror movies had gotten themselves into a rut. In terms of style there was very little to differentiate films from this era from the slashers of the 1980’s. Every director in the field was emulating either Wes Craven or John Carpenter. The only aspect of 90s horror that was any way original is the trend of self-referencing post-modernism. Rodriguez seems to move away from his own style to produce a somewhat pedestrian teen thriller that manages to retain its entertainment value due to its original concept.

The cast is diverse and carry quite a bit of star-power and the actors in the roles of the teachers are clearly having a good time. Josh Hartnett is just as crap and ever, but everyone else makes up for it. The scary scenes are effective enough and carry a hint of kitschy humour to prevent things from getting looking too ridiculous.

Worth mentioning is the special effects, which look good even by today’s standards. At the opposite end of the spectrum, the soundtrack is terrible.

Check it out if you’re looking for a decent old-school horror.

SIX outta TEN