Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Sleepaway Camp II-Unhappy Campers (1988)/Sleepaway Camp III-Teenage Wasteland (1989)

Today we'll take a look at two great, cheesy slasher movies from the late 80's.  In 1983, the first Sleepaway Camp was released.  A fairly standard Friday the 13th knockoff for the most part, it gained notoriety for the reveal of the killer who turns out to be Angela, a shy, bullied camper who is actually a boy harboring a wee bit of a psychotic streak.

With that gonzo twist, we come to the shot back to back sequels that focused more on humor than horror.

Sleepaway Camp II: Unhappy Campers (1988)

Pamela Springsteen (Bruce's sister) is Angela, all grown up and now a counselor at Camp Rolling Hills.  She's also still completely insane, taking out in gory fashion any person she feels is not being a "good camper".  That's pretty much the entire plot as Pam drills, burns, cuts and slashes her way through the entire cast of obnoxious rich kids until it's just her and Renee Estevez.  This one is really worth seeing just for the kills and Springsteen's oddly likable performance.  She's by far the most chipper and upbeat mass murderer I have ever seen in a movie.  Granted, it is a little odd to find oneself having to side with the killer since all the victims are unlikable as hell but that's the gamble you take when you watch a slasher movie.

This one is cheesy late 80's fun that goes by pretty quickly.

Sleepaway Camp III: Teenage Wasteland (1989)

The third film is pretty much more of the same with our chipper chopper now at Camp New Horizons (the same site as the other two camps), impersonating a camper she kills in the beginning of the film.  It's more of a comedy than the previous one with Pam going for camp in her performance, the camp is some sort of community outreach project that is just horrifically treacly and the killings more cheesy than anything else.  Drano posing as cocaine; decapitation, death by firecracker, lawnmower, it's all cheesy and silly with Springsteen and the gore once again being the only reasons to watch.  It's not as much fun as the second movie, a little too much time is spent on the annoying victims before they get offed and for some reason, the film tends to cut away from the gorier bits.  Very odd seeing as the two films were shot back to back, as I mentioned.  A subplot with the policeman father of one of the second film's victims is also shoehorned in but it goes nowhere interesting.  Hell, even Angela seems bored by him as she chooses just to simply shoot the guy rather than anything elaborate.

The second film is worth tracking down for fans of cheesy slasher movies and horror comedies in general.  Pamela Springsteen is quite likable in a twisted way (and strangely sympathetic as well as both films try to make her more of a tragic villain than anything else) and the special effects are good for a low budget movie.  You can skip the third one though, it's just not as much fun.

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About Me

I've been a huge fan of action, horror and comedy for as long as I can remember.