Slumber Party Massacre (1982)

Tool Time!


Like most of us, I watch movies to be entertained. But as a creative person I also watch movies to learn about telling a story well. I take mental notes when I am humored, frightened or bored and I try to keep these notes in mind when writing. So I was pleasantly surprised when I finally watched Slumber Party Massacre for the first time the other night (that I remember) and found it funny and smart in a number of ways.

So I’m pouring over the IMDb entry and to my surprise I discover that the writer is Rita Mae Brown, you know, the cat mysteries writer and novelist, famous for Rubyfruit Jungle ( .) And it was written as a parody of the teen slasher flick but the producers decided to be literal with it.  Director Amy Jones filmed a promo for it as a tryout for Roger Corman, who enjoyed it enough to let her pursue it. So this is not only well-written but women-led.

And this strange combo of attitudes, the satire and the straight story make for a darkly funny tale with great elements.

There’s nothing to go into here as far as plot, you have seen it all before. A group of girls have a sleepover while parents are away. They are going off to college soon and want to enjoy one more gathering. Some horny boys are trying to check it out, one girl is also trying to sneak off with her bf and, of course, crazy killer Russ Thorn is on the loose and obsessed with young pretty girls.

What makes it a  great watch, besides locker room showers, girls in pjs and deaths by power drills is that it’s action driven, clever and most of all fun. IMDb rates it as mediocre a 5/10, but I think horror fans will recognize its dark humor and enjoy it more.


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