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DVD Review

DVD cover

Varsity Blood


Starring: Lexi Giovagnoli, Wesley Scott and Debbie Rochon
Distributor: Image Entertainment
RRP: £12.99
IMAGE 4011
Certificate: 15
Release Date: 11 August 2014

A year ago, two high school students died on Halloween in suspicious circumstances. Now, one year on, it’s time for the big American football game and the Halloween after-party. However, a group of jocks and cheerleaders shun the school party in favour of arranging one of their own, located at a secluded and long-abandoned house with no power. As if their internal high-jinx and squabbling isn’t enough, there’s a killer on the loose (as Thin Lizzy might say), wearing the Indian warrior garb of the team mascot. But who is under the mask? And why is the group being targeted...?

The sound mix for this film is very low, but some might consider that a blessing. Varsity Blood could be used as a Master-Class in how to blatantly rip-off and simultaneously belittle Slaughter High and John Carpenter’s Halloween.

Slaughter High starred the very lovely Caroline Munro, First Lady of Fantasy, as the over-confident and somewhat bossy leader of the girl group. The killer in that film wore a jester’s costume – the fool or mascot of the high school team. And there was the illicit party at the abandoned building (in that instance, the old school).

The accidental-on-purpose coincidence of connections simply rack up from the classic Halloween. There’s the masked killer, of course. The escaped psychiatric patient making his way back to the area he knows. The authority figure attempting to catch-up with the killer, but never quite managing to until the end when it’s too late. Again, the old house. The essentially good and innocent girl, and the sexually promiscuous ones.

That reminds me that there is also a strong link at one point to the Friday the 13th Jason films, when the killer brutally dispatches a couple of separate pairs of teens partaking in carnal acts (shameful behaviour!). There is also a direct reference to the climatic finale of Halloween, when the surviving ‘nice’ girl in this film says, “Then he’s still out there…” It’s not so much an appreciation as downright obvious. It’s like they couldn’t think of a single original idea.

I don’t think we’re meant to expect too much from this movie, so I wasn’t too surprised when it barely reached those meager expectations. Some of the kills are nicely handled, but that’s about the best comment I can make. A little more originality and inventiveness would have been welcome.


Ty Power

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