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People who actually enjoy slasher movie's will probably want to see this. They may not think it's great, but they'll probably find it sufficiently entertaining. Those who don't like slasher movies... well, duh. Still, this is an above average slasher movie, with less grating performances than usual, well done gore, reasonably well designed stalking scenes and some slight suspense at times.
Alright, the plot's like this: there's a killer who's killing on the anniversary of his previous killings, and there are a bunch of faceless young adults for him to kill. I can't remember a single characters name in this film, and there is virtually no characterization.(Which, I might add, is not a flaw in this particular kind of film) Well, let's think, there's the inexperienced deputy guy, the blonde chick, the crazy fat balding guy, the sheriff, the surly clerk dude. Those are perhaps more specifics than I could usually come up with after watching a slasher film, but that ain't a whole lot. There's a certain amount of investigation into the killer's identity, but it is of no particular interest. I already knew the killer's identity before watching the film, but most people say that there's absolutely no difficulty guessing who it is, and I don't doubt them. Obviously, the afrorementioned aspects of the film aren't very important at all. All that matters are the killing and the stalking, and it's all pretty well done.
The killer is a veteran, and thus he does his slashing in his old infantry garb. I think this is a pretty effective outfit for him, though he has no particular characteristics beyond this, other than that he tends to use a bayonet and a pitchfork.
This is a fairly early slasher film, so it's got a relatively low body count, and actively tries to generate suspense a bit more than some other films. Some of the stalking scenes go on for ever and ever, initially being a bit suspenseful, sometimes, but eventually becoming kind of dull. I will give the movie credit- there was a false scare in the film that I initally believed would be a real scare, and a sudden murder that I wasn't actually expecting. Still, even if most of the stalking scenes really aren't surprising or all that suspenseful, it's still fun to watch, even before the killing starts. Why this is a couldn't really say, but it's still interesting enough.
The gore in this film was done by Tom Savini, and it holds up very well.(Most of the work holds up better than what he did in the more famous/infamous Maniac) This film is unrated, so you don't get sudden, jarring cutaways, which is nice. The film takes the violence a lot more seriously than lots of other slasher movies, not really emphasizing creative methods of murder, and also trying to make the deaths more genuinely horrific. The film is not extremely gory, but it is unflinching in the face of the violence, and it makes killing people look a lot more difficult than many other films.(Exemplified by the effort and surprising amount of time it takes for the prowler to impale someone on his pitchfork, and how long it takes the bayonet-through-the-brain victim to die. The throat-slashing in the pool is quite nasty as well) There's also a shotgun-head explosion. It's not Savini's best, or as good as the Scanners exploding head, but an exploding head is always amusing.
Yeah this movie's pretty cool.(Don't let the 3 star rating fool you: As much as I enjoy them, I can't think of a single out and out slasher movie that I'd give 5 stars. So, this is reasonably high up on the slasher-meter)