When Skip and his crew target the school nerd, Marty, an overly demeaning April Fool’s Day prank ends up causing Marty to be horribly disfigured. Ten years later, the crew is invited back to their old school for a reunion, but things take a sinister turn when they discover Marty invited them all back for his own personal April Fool’s Day.
This film obviously was originally titled “April Fool’s Day,” but they had to change the name, when director Fred Walton beat them to the punch earlier in the year. Slaughter High is one of my personal favorites from the slasher sub-genre; While it’s far from perfect (I mean, we are talking slashers here), it still has plenty of charm — Some creative deaths, an awesome look for the killer, and a great location for everything to happen.
The old school building is large enough for everyone to roam and has plenty of places for Marty to hide. I wish the lighting in the film was better, which is my biggest gripe because so much gets lost in the dark. Perhaps a Blu-ray will be released with better picture quality (all of my DVDs look like VHS rips).
Slaughter High may not have been a game changer, but it did follow the formula and it succeeded in bringing us some sweet sweet revenge. While that is generally the theme for slashers, you usually hope one or more likable characters survive the onslaught. With SH it was the opposite for me. I found myself rooting for Marty. The most likable characters are Skip (Carmine Iannaccone) and Carol (Caroline Munro) and the two of them are terrible human beings. While it’s true, what leads to Marty’s disfigurement can be classified as an accident and they can’t really be held accountable, but the first prank was emotionally scarring and as demeaning as they come. Kids have brought guns to school for less. This was long before school shootings almost became a trend. Perhaps this movie can be used as some sort of morbid P.S.A., “if you are a bully, one day…. you will drink a can of beer filled with acid… so knock it off, douchebag!”
It’s not often you will hear me say this so enjoy it, folks. This is one film that could benefit from a remake. However, I don’t think it could be done as gritty as it needs to be… unless Rob Zombie did it maybe.
Slaughter High holds a special place in my heart, so my rating will be a tad biased. I give it 3.5 jester hats out of 5.