Friday, March 5, 2010

Random thoughts about Sorority Row...

Someone should have forced me to join a sorority, is what I'm thinking.

I really had no idea sorority life was such a hedonistic, ridiculously well-off, 24/7 party, or I'd have thought twice about it.

After watching the futile remake of the 80's slasher film The House on Sorority Row, I'm just not sure I have a legitimate review in me. Instead, I have some random thoughts. Most of which aren't shedding a very good light on this counterfeit edition of the original. But there are a few bright spots.

Beware: Mucho spoilers ahead!

*Okay, here's the thing. When the chain holding Cassidy broke as she was being lowered into the mine shaft and she was uncerimoniously dumped to the ground, how did she get back up? I mean, one moment she's glancing at the warning written in blood on the stone wall, the next she and the other girls are heading back to the sorority house. Did she leap, higher than a single bound? Scurry up the sides like Spiderman? Or did I nod off and miss the girls lowering a rescue rope?

*I'd be seriously pissed if the best my 'sisters' could come up with in the way of nicknames was "Chugs".

*Once again we have the old "accidentally kill someone but hide the evidence and go about our lives" plot device. I've seen this too many times for it to even seem authentic or rational. (Creepshow: The Hitchhiker? I know what you did last summer? Etc, etc...) If there's anyone out there who hasn't witnessed a cinematic version of this dilemma and would actually consider doing anything remotely this stupid in real life, I'd like to meet them so I could shake them silly.

*Leah Pipes is a fine actress and it is almost a shame seeing her wasted here. Though her character was the best-written, if I'm being honest. Though a typical ferocious bitch, she did lend a little something to the movie that was lacking in so many other departments.

*I find it so hard to imagine that tire iron that killed Megan could have actually penetrated her chest wall. Are tire irons not blunt? (Sure, the modified version the killer then uses could do the deed, but the original one?) I suppose with enough ooomph, maybe...but the man behind the metal didn't seem strong enough to fight his way out of a paper bag.

*What the hell happened to Carrie Fisher? No, I mean her face.

*Maybe I'm naive, but I didn't realize that one sorority house should take up an entire street block. Theta Pi had to be the biggest, most ridiculously pimped-out sorority house I've ever seen. Welcome to the lives of the Greek and undeserving.

*Forget how Cassidy got out of the mine shaft. How did the killer get Megan out? He'd have had to gotten down there himself (without help, as no one knew he was a damn murderer) and then somehow gotten back out with her in tow. Too much of a hassle for most killers, I'm thinking.

*It wasn't enough to just have a blade fashioned onto the tire iron. No, our guy felt the need to have a knife, spear, and some kind of harpoon attached. Overkill, buddy. Hell, just beat them with the tire iron...or perhaps shove it into their chest, right?

*There was no reason for the character of Maggie to exist other than to give viewers another possible suspect. Except if you're looking to plan your sequel.

*Despite their questionable guy's wet-dream wardrobe...

...these girls really did have each other's backs for the most part. Their promise of solidarity takes them all the way to the finish of the film. Of course not all of them make it out alive.

*I loved Chugs's death. Death by wine bottle. Gives new meaning to the phrase 'choke on it'.
And correct me if I'm wrong, but she sooo deserved to die. And that therapist she was boinking? Ugh.

*Speaking of cool deaths...death by flare gun! Haven't seen that one since...Dead Calm?
Unfortunately it was made less effective by having her wade through (and get lost in) sudsy bubbles before the killer finds her.

*Jesus! Does a hot tub really make that many suds? Enough to cover an entire front yard and then some? And if so, why don't more people do this? It looked fun.
Well, except for the whole flare gun incident.

*Loved the little rhyme: Theta Pi must die! I'm still coming up with random chants that would work with other Greek letters: " Alpha Sigma Rho, Kill every ho!"... Delta Theta Phi, Stick in their eye!"

*I hated who ended up being the killer. It was nearly as obvious as a thong in Ipanema.

*Call me rude. I've said it before and I'll say it again. How did Demi Moore and Bruce Willis create this:

*Another movie filmed in Pittsburgh. High five! But where the hell were those places?

All in all, it really wasn't that bad. No worse than any other random re-invention of 80's horror. Yes, it was formulaic and at times preposterous, but I didn't completely waste my time. I can say I never once wanted to turn it off. And my husband watched the whole thing with me - a rarity to be sure. But I think I can guess why. Two letters - and no, they aren't Greek. (If I have to spell it out then it's just not funny anymore...)

Footnote: There is a really great interview with Sorority Row's director (Stewart Hendler) on Monster Land, the kick-ass website of Jeanette Laredo. Go here now and check it out!

HorrorBlips: vote it up!


forestofthedead said...

I enjoyed your thoughts on this film. Your style of writing is great.

James said...

Oh dear. I think I might give this a miss. At least until it comes on TV! I only recently watched the original and I really enjoyed it - good old fashioned slasher movie goodness. Can't beat it! And agreed - what is with that weapon? Overkill much.

C.L. Hadden said...

Patrick: Thanks very much!

James: It wasn't awful, but I'm not sure I'd want to pay much to see it.
The original WAS fun - a classic! Maybe I'm just desensitized to remakes, I don't know...

Sarah from Scare Sarah said...

Yeah, I'd sure watch it on TV! I love a "not bad" film.

Cyberschizoid said...

I've gotta say I really did not bother with this movie when it was released but I love your write-up! Very amusing!
Great blog!!!!!