Monday, October 25, 2010

The Prowler

It was a quiet Sunday night and I felt the hankering for something horror-like, so I decided upon a movie. The Prowler turned out to be a good choice. In this under-appreciated and probably unknown to the general public slasher, a soldier comes home from WWII and finds a Dear John letter from his girl. So he gears up and kills her and her date and is never caught. The town, Avalon Bay, NJ, decrees that they shall never have a graduation day dance again because of this. Well, 35 years later, they're having the dance again for the first time since the murders and it seems that someone is still around and doesn't like that and expresses his annoyance with grisly murders.

A good companion piece to the similar My Bloody Valentine, this film is set in a blue-collar world and features kids who just want to have a little fun. Unfortunately for them, that fun means dying. And oh, how they are dispatched. Tom Savini often cites this as his best work, and it's definitely up there for me. The kill shots are long and realistic. There's no quick stabbing scenes. No, he drives that knife home and lets it linger there for awhile, letting the pain sink in. Good times. The killer has a great outfit too. It's basically fatigues, a helmet and a scarf/mask of some sort and is simple but works for the movie. I also like how he uses basically two weapons the entire time--a pitchfork and a knife. The former doesn't really fit in with the army motif for me but it gives us some decent kills. I like that kind of consistency in a slasher. It gives him character.

The cast is mostly unknowns, save for Lawrence Tierney, who plays an old Major that lives across the street from the dorm/apartments that the main girl lives at. They do pretty well. I don't have any complaints, save for the scene where the deputy is trying to reach the sheriff who went on vacation. The motel clerk is rather annoying and the scene, while humorous, kinda throws off the pacing so late in the game. Earlier on it would have been better but at this point a bunch of people are dead and a killer is on the loose and the tension is mounting and this just throws it all away.

All in all, The Prowler is a fun slasher with some good kills that are sure to whet your appetite for gore. It's on instant streaming too, which is nice, since I had never heard of it and just added it for the cover, so when I was going through them for something to watch, I decided on it. Good choice. Go me. Check it out.

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