Sunday, March 22, 2009

Return to 'Sorority Row'

With the slasher remake trend showing no signs of abating, those who count themselves among the weary (present company excluded, although the F13 remake somewhat tested my seemingly limitless tolerance for slasher crap) may take some comfort in what can be best described as a more logical change in the tide: moving away from retreads of the classics (Halloween, Friday the 13th, When a Stranger Calls) toward the more obscure. With a remake of Tobe Hooper's Funhouse just announced, looks like another worthy slasher redux is also on its way to a multiplex near you.

Sorority Row is a reimagining of The House on Sorority Row (1983), in which a sorority prank gone wrong gives rise to slasher mayhem and murder among the coed set. I have a soft spot for the original because of the frequent good natured debates I have with my friend Jodi (who co-starred in the film and graces one of the VHS covers) over what I swear is the dubbing of her voice - a claim she has categorically refuted in the past. (She's one of the interviewees in the forthcoming Butcher Knives & Body Counts anthology, so perhaps she'll finally fess up!).

In any event, the new film looks like one of those rare exceptions when a remake actually works, maybe even improves upon the original. Lots of cool imagery going on here - from its cloaked villian (and its shades of Scream and I Know What You Did Last Summer) and its attractive cast of coed victims (Black Christmas 2006, anyone?) to the innocuous tire iron seemingly making its bid for iconic instrument of death status and the fun-with-a-capital-F appearance of Carrie Fisher sporting a shotgun and spouting lines you can just imagine a crowded theater of kids going crazy with nervous laughter and applause for. File this one under "Good times ahead."

SORORITY ROW Trailer in High-Definition

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