Length: 88 minutes
Director: Nelson McCormick (“Nip/Tuck”; “Prison Break”)
Writer: J.S. Cardone (The Covenant; The Forsaken)
Starring: Brittany Snow, Scott Porter, Johnathon Schaech, Jessica Stroup, Linden Ashby, Dana Davis, James Ransone, Brianne Davis, Kellan Lutz, Jana Kramer, Rachel Specter, Joshua Leonard
With remakes of “Friday the 13th” and “Hellraiser” on the way (not to mention “The Stepfather” by the same director of this film), Hollywood is doing it’s best to revive the horror franchises of the ‘80’s. Rob Zombie’s “Halloween” remake (technically a ‘70’s remake) made enough bank to realize a potential market. They were right. This remake of the 1980 overrated slasher classic, “Prom Night” opened at number one at the box office in it’s first week with over $20 million in ticket sales. Unlike Zombie’s remake, which was at least interesting and faithful to it’s predecessor, this remake is lame and in name only. The original movie centered around the revenge of an accidental death of a high school student. The plot here centers around high school senior Donna (Brittany Snow) and her dopey “Laguna Beach” group of friends and the bloodshed at their prom. Three years earlier, Donna’s family was murdered by one of her teachers, Richard Fenton (Johnathon Schaech), who had fallen obsessively in love with her. Now Donna is trying to move on with her life and is heading out to the prom with her sweet boyfriend, Bobby (“Friday Night Light”’s Scott Porter), and their above mentioned MTV reality show-ish entourage. Turns out Fenton has escaped from his mental hospital a few days earlier and is at the prom waiting to pick them off one by one. The movie follows all the standard horror clichés. You could play a drinking game with how many times the ol’ “somebody is in the mirror behind you” bit pops up- though most of this film’s audience wouldn’t be able to participate because the movie is rated PG-13! Works for the box office, sure, but the film suffers. The scares are limited by it’s rating and you get a lot of weak off-screen murders and conveniently covered stabbings. The acting is drab. Snow is terrible and the scenes in between the action are painful to watch. Especially when the friends have the played out “Guys, this is our last year at high school together. We could never see each other again!” conversations. Director Nelson McCormick and most of the cast are all TV veterans and it shows. The movie could have premiered on MTV as one of their “original” movies. At least that way it could have reached it’s target audience where they’re most comfortable- at home where they don’t have a curfew.