Horrorfest 2018: Sleepaway Camp III: Teenage Wasteland (1989, Michael A. Simpson)


Yep Sleepaway Camp III is an obvious cash grab sequel that was not good. Not even fun in a bad way, or even trashy. How the same people involved with the second one made this film is sad, mostly because its look screams low, low budget. The kills are lame, the special effects are poor or non existent, and Angela is even going through the motions. By the end of the 1980s the slasher genre had run out of ideas and felt stale, and I think Sleepaway Camp III reflects that, along with other bland horror cash grabs that also failed miserably.

Oh and this film lacks good characters, has a lame plot and lacks any of the fun meta and mayhem that made the sequel good. It doesn’t have the unique weirdness of the first film, either. Even though this was supposed to be the last entry in the series, more films were made. Count me out.

Horrorfest 2018 Presents: Sleepaway Camp II: Unhappy Campers (1988, Michael A. Simpson)


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While I liked the first film quite a bit, Sleepaway Camp II is better. There are a few notable changes, particularly having Angela, the villain of the series, go from silent to wise cracking. Naturally a new camp is set up, and Angela (now played by Pamela Springsteen, in a great performance), is hiding her identity and has gone back to killing anyone who crosses her. This film also has references to other slasher movies and a bleak sense of humor, elements that were needed since by the late 1980s slasher fatigue had set in.

Unlike the first movie, where most of the characters were awful people, this one has some okay folks. However when it comes to Angela, she doesn’t care: be annoying, do foolish things, or cross her path and things end badly. Two sisters find out the hard way, as do numerous other campers. The body count is higher, a characteristic of most horror sequels, and the kills are more gruesome.

Although it sometimes comes off as really campy, Sleepaway Camp II is mostly fun, even meta at times. If you like slasher films that are humorous and self aware, this one is for you. Viewed thanks to TubiTV, a good resource for movie fans. Oh and I think I hear the happy campers song echoing off in the distance…

 

Horrorfest 2018 Presents: Sleepaway Camp (1983, Robert Hiltzik)


Ah the 1980s, a time full of goofy slasher flicks like Sleepaway Camp. Made at the height of the horror movie craze Robert Hiltzik’s movie reflects the typical 80s horror movie: low budget, full of mostly unknowns, featuring plenty of horrible deaths and some cheesy music. The end credits features something called “Angela’s Theme” and it oddly fits a movie where the unseen killer stalks their victims. Too bad I already knew who the killer was, having been spoiled already thanks to years of being online and the fact that this movie came out decades ago. Oh to have been in the theater for this one and seen the reactions; I had to settle instead for Joe Bob Briggs’ commentary and a viewing on Shudder, neither of which are bad yet getting to see this on the big screen would be a treat. I am not sure if this is a good movie, however I enjoyed it at its basic level, and that is all that matters.

The plot is fairly simple: kids go to a camp, some of them meet horrible ends. It all revolves around quiet yet eerie Angela and her cousin Ricky, who is very protective of her. Sent to camp by Aunt Martha (Desiree GouldĀ in what is the strangest performance I have ever seen) they are at the center of a murder mystery. Naturally the film tries to hide who the killer is, and there were times when even though I knew who it was I wondered if maybe it was two people. After all there is the interesting fan theory that has Rickey helping the killer the whole time, which all things considered makes a lot of sense. I wish I could discuss the disturbing twist ending more, yet its one of those “You have to see it for yourself” moments in horror cinema. I have not viewed any of the sequels, although I sort of wish to just because its amusing that Sleepaway Camp actually had sequels. It’s an odd duck, the kind of movie after watching you ponder before moving onto something actually more interesting.

Horrorfest 2018 Makes Me Shudder: 10 Years of Viewing


Look, I know the last one was a bust. I blame work, laziness, whatever. However this time I have a new, better resource: Shudder. Also not going with a list again, just showing the ones I have seen so far. Plus this is the 10th year of me doing Horrorfest. Wow. So I plan on going all out this time.

Based on the viewing list, I think I did pretty well.

1. Tourist Trap (1979, Crazy People)-https://wordpress.com/view/madman731.wordpress.com
2. Sleepaway Camp (1983, Slasher)-https://wordpress.com/view/madman731.wordpress.com
3. Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-O-Rama (1988, Demonic)-https://wordpress.com/post/madman731.wordpress.com/8723
4. Daughters of Darkness (1971, Vampires)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/09/29/horrorfest-2018-presents-daughters-of-darkness-1971-harry-kumel/
5. Basket Case (1982, Creature Feature)-https://wp.me/pRBID-2gT
6. The Meg (2018, Big Ass Shark)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/10/03/horrorfest-2018-presents-the-meg-2018-jon-turteltaub/
7. The Void (2016, Weird As Hell)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/10/04/horrorfest-2018-presents-the-void-2016-steven-kostanski-and-jeremy-gillespie/
8. The Addiction (1995, Vampires)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/10/07/horrorfest-2018-presents-the-addiction-1995-abel-ferrara/
9. Bad Moon (1996, Werewolf)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/?p=8763
10. The House By The Cemetery (1981, Italian horror)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/10/25/horrorfest-2018-presents-the-house-by-the-cemetery-1981-lucio-fulci/

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11. Don’t Go In The Woods (1981, Slasher)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/10/30/horrorfest-2018-presents-dont-go-in-the-woods-1981-james-bryan/
12. Curtains (1983, Crazy People)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/10/30/horrorfest-2018-presents-curtains-1983-richard-ciupka/
13. Magic (1978, DUMMIES ARE CREEPY)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/10/30/horrorfest-2018-presents-magic-1978-richard-attenborough/
14. Black Belly of the Tarantula (1971, Giallo)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/10/31/the-black-belly-of-the-tarantula-1971-paolo-cavara/
15. Sleepaway Camp II: Unhappy Campers (1988, Angela)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/11/01/horrorfest-2018-presents-sleepaway-camp-ii-unhappy-campers-1988-michael-a-simpson/
16. Sleepaway Camp III: Teenage Wasteland (1989, Angela. Again)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/11/04/horrorfest-2018-sleepaway-camp-iii-teenage-wasteland-1989-michael-a-simpson/
17. Scream Blacula, Scream (1972, Blacula. Duh)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/11/04/horrorfest-2018-presents-scream-blacula-scream-1973-bob-kelljan/
18. Split (2017, The Beast)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/11/04/horrorfest-2018-presents-split-2017-m-night-shyamalan/
19. Burial Ground (1985, Zombies)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/11/07/horrorfest-2018-presents-burial-ground-aka-the-nights-of-terror-1985-andrea-bianchi/
20. Tetsuo: The Iron Man (1989, METAL BECOMES FLESH)-https://wordpress.com/post/madman731.wordpress.com/8814

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21. Cannibal Holocaust (1980, Cannibals)-https://wp.me/pRBID-2ik
22. The Giant Spider Invasion (1975, Spiders. Duh)-https://wordpress.com/posts/madman731.wordpress.com
23. Teenage Zombies (1960, Zombies)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/12/03/horrorfest-2018-presents-teenage-zombies-1960-jerry-warren/
24. Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1974, Duh)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/12/06/horrorfest-2018-presents-bram-stokers-dracula-1974-dan-curtis/
25. Creepshow 2 (1987, Anthology)-https://wp.me/pRBID-2iA
26. Death Bed: The Bed That Eats (1977, WTF)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/12/08/death-bed-the-bed-that-eats-1977-george-barry/
27. Zombie Holocaust (1980, Zombies)-https://wp.me/pRBID-2iJ
28. The Gate (1987, Demons)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/12/13/horrorfest-2018-presents-the-gate-1987-tibor-takacs/
29. Chopping Mall (1986, Killer Robots)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2018/12/14/horrorfest-2018-presents-chopping-mall-1986-jim-wynorski/
30. Halloween (2018, Ole Mikey)-https://wordpress.com/posts/madman731.wordpress.com

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31. Hell Of The Living Dead (1984, Zombies)-https://wordpress.com/view/madman731.wordpress.com
32. The Bat (1959, Slasher Mystery)-https://wordpress.com/post/madman731.wordpress.com/8915
33. Phantasm III: Lord of the Dead (1994, Weird)-https://wordpress.com/posts/madman731.wordpress.com
34. Contamination (1980, Aliens)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2019/03/07/horrorfest-2018-presents-contamination-1980-luigi-cozzi/
35. We Always Find Ourselves in the Sea (2017, Ghosts)-https://wordpress.com/posts/madman731.wordpress.com
36. Madman (1982, Brutal)-https://wordpress.com/view/madman731.wordpress.com
37. Willow Creek (2013, BIGFOOT IS PISSED)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2019/04/07/horrorfest-2019-presents-willow-creek-2013-bobcat-goldthwait/
38. Ghostwatch (1992, BBC Ghost Hunting)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2019/04/14/horrorfest-2019-presents-ghostwatch-1992-lesley-manning/

Halloween Night:

Rewatch: Evil Dead II: Dead By Dawn (1987, Barnes & Noble Blu-Ray)

39. The New York Ripper (1982, Slasher)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2019/05/03/horrorfest-2018-presents-the-new-york-ripper-1982-lucio-fulci/
40. The Deadly Spawn (1983, Aliens)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2019/05/10/horrorfest-2018-presents-the-deadly-spawn-1983-douglas-mckeown/
41. The Curse of the Werewolf (1961, Duh)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2019/05/10/horrorfest-2018-its-hammer-time-presents-the-curse-of-the-werewolf-1961-terence-fisher/
42. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 (1986, The Sawyer Clan)-https://madman731.wordpress.com/2019/05/12/the-texas-chainsaw-massacre-2-1986-tobe-hooper/

Horrorfest 2015 Presents: Night of the Demons 2 (1994, Brian Trenchard-Smith)


Many horror sequels have a high rate of diminishing returns. However in the case of Night of the Demons 2 the sequel is that rare one that inproves upon the original. Although the first one didn’t set the bar very high-yet I did enjoy it despite it’s low budget and B movie cast. The sequel continues along the same lines, mixing dark humor with gross out gore.

Also this film has some star power in a young, not yet famous Christine Taylor, who has since appeared in many famous comedies. Plus the characters here are better than the ones in the first film. I rather liked Mouse, yet its Gloria, the take no prisoners nun, who is the film’s main attraction. Naturally Angela returns to wreck more havoc, which makes me wonder why people would go into a cursed old house in the first place. Oh right, it’s a horror movie.

One of the best nasty moments is when one of the possessed girls spouts an arm out of her chest,Ā  using it to nab a perverted greaser. Sure this isn’t high art and I’m sure they ripped off The Evil Dead II, yet I was entertained. Besides this film has an Uzi filled with holy water and a big grand monster style finale. I’m also wondering why a 90s movie felt like an 80s release. Odd. Good, but odd. I have little hope for the third one, and I’m amused that this is a series.

Horrorfest 2014 Presents: Night of the Demons (1988, Kevin Tenney)


Thanks to Scream Factory I was able to view another 80s cult film, this one being titled Night of the Demons. By the late 1980s the horror film genre was tired of slasher movies, and so films like this one were more the norm, although of course a group of teenagers wander into some abandoned building and get horribly murdered. However “Night” has a more slower pace, as it builds up the tension until events really get out of hand. And naturally a film like this has a morality tale of sorts included, offering up why one should not mess with forces beyond our world, or something like that. Not really a complex message, although this movie is pretty straightforward, which is part of its charm. Also the opener is darkly humorous, as it features an old man preparing to lace his candy apples with razor blades. How that side story concludes, is um, with a quite gruesome surprise.

This is the type of horror movie where you have character names such as Angela, Judy, Helen, Max and Roger. Although of course you have a guy like Stooge, who by the end of the film truly lives up to his human pig reputation. Most of the film doesn’t contain humor and is a suspenseful movie, turning into a chase style trying to escape movie by the conclusion. Despite having some cliches “Night” has some surprises, and I was entertained despite the film’s low budget limitations. I also liked that the film saves its gory elements for later on, and doesn’t become too campy, the bizarre plot aside. Oh and the film has a really good soundtrack, with one of the tracks being sang by Bauhaus, who also contributed a track to the 1980s horror classic The Hunger. I’m not sure why or how this film spawned multiple sequels (plus the typical horror remake) although by the 1980s franchises had become the norm for anything halfway successful or notable.

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