Director:Lucky McKee, Chris Sivertson
Cast:Caitlin Stasey, Sianoa Smit-McPhee, Brooke Butler, Tom Williamson, Reanin Johannink, Amanda Grace Cooper, Leigh Parker, Jordan Wilson, Nicholas S. Morrison, Chris Petrovski
I'm not sure where All Cheerleaders Die went wrong, but it seemed like such a promising project early on. With Lucky McKee having a decent genre track record and promises of "popcorn fare" and "thrills" added to the small amount of hype that I was feeling towards it. I was hoping for a fun, cheesy gore-filled ride, but instead got a lame MTV-style high school melodrama for nearly the first half, while the second was nothing more than a tame B-movie that tried its best to be campy and entertaining, whilst not actually being campy OR entertaining.
The film's storyline is your standard horror premise--focusing on a small group of high school cheerleading snobs that experiment with the football squad as much as they do on each other. Eventually the girls piss off the wrong footballer and he goes into some sort of rage, racing after the girls in their car after a little late night partying. Naturally this leads to the girls flying off a cliff and into a river (whoops!).
Luckily for them, the local wiccan goth chick was creeping nearby and rescued the bodies of her peers and inadvertently brings them back to life using magical glowing rocks (yay for magical glowing rocks!). Everything seems fine and dandy until the gals realize that they must feast on the blood/lifeforce of male victims in order to remain "healthy". Of course that still doesn't stop them from going to class the next day. In fact, that's where they do the rest of their killing, as they get revenge by taking out each person semi-involved in their death in one poorly planned kill after the other.
The film has numerous issues, with one of the biggest being the pacing for the first half. As stated earlier, the first 30+ minutes feels like some sort of dull MTV high school drama, with very little going on, added to the fact that there's zero likable characters. The slow pacing doesn't pick up until the mid-way mark where the girls are FINALLY killed and brought back to life, but that's also where the movie tries too hard at being fun and campy and failing at both aspects thanks to the problematic script.
The minimal jokes it does offer aren't funny and hoping to rely on cool deaths or gore to make up for any faults also proves fruitless as there really aren't any. Sure we get some blood and dodgy CG here and there, but that's pretty much the extent of the "gore" while the deaths are as uninspiring as the plot. I won't even bother to go into all the plot-holes scattered throughout the flick. It's no wonder this project came from a short film because it felt at least 20-minutes too long. Ironically the film does actually get good at one point, but that's literally at the very end of the film. Why couldn't it have just started out where it ended!?
With one half being a dull MTV high school melodrama and the other being a film that tries way too hard at being fun and campy, All Cheerleaders Die ultimately ended up being a wasted effort that should've remained simply as the short film that it's based on. If you're looking for a fun gory ride I'd advise looking elsewhere, however if you want a lot of angsty teen drama and some magical glowing rocks give this a look.
|Posted on May 1, 2014 - 10:05pm | FrighT MasteR|