Final Exam (DVD)
Reviewed by Uncle Creepy
Starring Cecile Bagdadi, Joel Rice, Sherry Willish-Burch
Directed by Jimmy Huston
Distributed by BCI Entertainment
There was a period in time during the Eighties in which you couldn't make a slasher flick fast enough. They came in all shapes and sizes. High budget, low budget, and of course no budget. Every even semi-major occurrence had its very own movie -- Prom Night, Mother's Day, Graduation Day, New Year's Evil, Night School, Happy Birthday to Me -- no occasion went unserviced. There were good flicks, wastes of time, and obscure little films by the dozens. You can file 1981's Final Exam comfortably under obscure!
After exam week comes to a close at Lanier College, some drunken college kids stage a phony terrorist attack complete with squibs and high-powered machine guns as a means to buy some time for one of their classmates to doctor his final score. (This really has to be seen to be believed; what a different time we live in.) Too bad for them a real killer shows up later and begins massacring them one-by-one. Honestly, that's about all the plotline there is. All the events of this flick are pretty much completely unrelated to each other. Final Exam exists for one reason: the body count.
Normally this wouldn't be such a bad thing, but the kills themselves are mostly bloodless and uninspired. Only one chick gets naked. The killer looks absolutely normal. Couple all these facts with there being little to no storyline to latch onto, and what we get here is a pretty dismal experience.
However, for whatever reason, there's a certain charm to be found within the film's runtime. One that will keep you watching until the very end when our heroine just sits on her stoop and the credits roll (what action). Some would say that's a spoiler, but come on, you know in these flicks there has to be an end girl. The only thing I can think of for me diggin' on this even somewhat is pure nostalgia for a much simpler time. Who knows?
In terms of special features BCI (bless their hearts) goes above and beyond the call of duty for a movie like this. Included is an energetic commentary with the cast moderated by guest programmer at the New Beverly Cinema, Julie Marchese, and Deron Miller of CKY. From there we get three cast interviews and a host of trailers.
Final Exam is the type of film that only the hardest of the hardcore horror collectors will want in their library. Hell, it's worth a look if only for the wacky terrorism scene. Everyone else will probably want to steer clear of it.
2 1/2 out of 5
2 1/2 out of 5
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