Wednesday, 11 June 2014

All Cheerleaders Die (2013)

All Cheerleaders Die (2013)
Director: Lucky McKee, Chris Sivertson
Starring: Caitlin Stasey, Sianoa Smit-McPhee and Brooke Butler
Running Time: 90 min

  Who doesn't love cheerleaders and who wouldn't want to see a few of them die?  Directors Lucky McKee (May, The Woman) and Chris Sivertson (The Lost, I Know Who Killed Me) get a ahead of the game and remake their own 2001 video "All Cheerleaders Die".

  Maddy Killian is editing a video of her "friend" and soon to be cheerleader captain, Alexis.  The video is shot at the end of the school year and Maddy follows Alexis around and shows how "popular" she is and what a mean bitch she can be.  Good times!  Anyway, eventually they get to the field and during a cheer leading stunt, something goes wrong and Alexis is killed.

  Fast forward to a couple days before the new school year starts and Maddy goes to cheerleaders try-outs.  After an exciting cheerleader montage, she gets in and is invited to the cheerleader party.  Before she goes, she makes an entry into her video diary, vowing revenge on Tracy, the new captain of the squad and her boyfriend, Terry, who happens to be Alexis ex-boyfriend and the school's star football player.  On the way out, Maddy's creepy wiccan ex-girlfriend, Leena shows up and warns her that bad things are going to happen because of her new cheerleader ways. Whateverrrrrrr!
  At the party, she tells Tracy that Terry cheated on her during the summer and Tracy, of course, believes her and breaks up with Terry, then Maddy consoles her by making out with her?  I guess everybody grieves differently.  The next night, which happens to be the night before the first day of school, they go to another party and almost everyone is there.  Even Leena, who is using her magical rocks to try and keep Maddy safe from any impending doom.  The only person missing is Terry, so Maddy and Tracy go into the bush and get into each others bush, while Tracy waits to confront Terry about his cheating.  Terry finally arrives and Tracy tells him its over but with a lot of penis insults, which leads to Terry decking Tracy.  The girls freak out and the other guys are far to cowardly to help, so the ladies run to their car to escape.  However, Terry isn't done, he gathers up the guys and they run the ladies off the road and leave them for dead in the river.  That'll learn them!  Luckily, Leena is nearby and brings the girls back to life with her magic rocks!  Now that they are back from the dead and out to get their revenge on Terry and his football buddies!

  This was an interesting comedy/horror film with an very strong third act.  McKee and Sivertson do a good job keeping the audience laughing as they poke fun of high school culture and letting the darkness trickle in slowly.  The casting for this is really good, with a number of newer faces like, Caitlin Stasey (I, Frankenstein, Evidence) as Maddy, Sianoa Smit-McPhee (Hung, Touchback) who plays Leena and Brooke Butler (CSI, Tosh.0) who plays Tracy.  These ladies are terrific leads and I'm looking forward to see them in other films.  Also, Tom Williams is pretty exceptional as "Terry" considering this is his first film and he really stands out in this cast.

My only issues with the film is that it seems to be a little disjointed at times and there isn't a real understanding of what is motivating some of the characters.  Like Maddy, while reviewing her tapes before Alexis death, she didn't seem like she was friends with any of these girls or even into that scene.  Then we find out, her and Alexis were really good friends?  It's just seems forced and not true.  I can understand later on why she wants to get revenge on Terry but Tracy just seems like collateral damage and I still don't know why Maddy was there in the first place with Alexis.  Also, the Vic character, one of the Terry's friends who doesn't agree with what his teammates are doing, y'know with all the murdering cheerleaders, but he is afraid to tell.  He seems to be the only one of these people with a conscience but what is his payoff?  Being a nice guy doesn't count and neither does being in love with someone who will never love you back.  His character just seems shoehorned in and he seems to show up at a lot of opportune times.  Finally, the suspension of belief does get strained at times and you wonder, where are these people's parents? or why don't they just call the police? or even how does nobody on that street hear or see that person being murdered with all that screaming going on?  But I guess extensive bad decision making is what make most of these horrors work and who wants to think, when there are cheerleaders bouncing?

With that aside, this is a fun film that you really need to just put your brain away for and just enjoy the ride.  There are ample shots of cheerleaders & football dudes for everybody to enjoy with enough humour and tremendous amount of blood near the end to round out the whole package.  You may even want to get up and do a little cheer at the end.

All Cheerleaders Die is in select theaters June 13!

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