10 April 2004 | Gafke
Not worth the effort
The best part of this film comes with the opening credits, when we hear Type O Negative's excellent rendition of the cheesy old Seals & Crofts song "Summer Breeze." Unfortunately, the song soon ends and the movie starts.
This film bears little resemblance to the book upon which it was based, which is a shame because the book was really quite good. The book was about four teens who strike a young boy with their car, accidentally killing him. The boys' older brother tracks them down when one of the girls sends flowers to the funeral. It was a story about taking responsibility for your actions, and about the different (and extreme) ways that guilt and grief affect us all. The movie version, however, scraps all that and gives us a hook-handed slasher who cannot be stopped and will not die. It's Jason Voorhees on the beach.
The teens are all flawlessly beautiful and perfectly one-dimensional, although Jennifer Love-Hewitt does try to convey a severe case of guilty conscience and mostly succeeds. The story quickly becomes ridiculous as crabs are stuffed into the trunk of a car and then inexplicably disappear (I suppose if you were H. P. Lovecraft, this might be considered scary) and one girl is subjected to the spine- tingling terror of a professional haircut while she sleeps! Oh god, the horror! The Fisherman (wow, what a terror inspiring nickname - next we'll have the Mailman or the Burger Chef, I guess) stalks silently through the film in his yellow rain slicker and floppy hat, impaling people on his silver steel hook. And I didn't care about any of the victims. Granted, you're not really supposed to care much about the characters in a film like this, but this is far from innovative stuff here; there's just nothing to appreciate. I was bored silly with this one. Give me Friday the 13th any day.