Watchable film, though I think it may have worked better as two separate films. In fact, it's one of those movies I knew I'd seen before, but had to rewatch because I couldn't remember the plot (or ending).
The plot: We open with the night young Mary Mattock (Hatchet) slaughters her parents. A very Halloween-like tale, gender-reversed.
Fast forward - now in her 20s, Mary is institutionalized. For whatever reason, she's in her room, completely naked, nearly catatonic. Enter sleazy orderly - who asks if she wants to suck his 'lollipop'. If you want the stuff of nightmares, think of the liberties that surely take place behind locked doors.
Yep - he rapes her & she becomes pregnant. Not knowing what the hell's going on, she gives birth. The doctors tell her it didn't survive. And, Mary escapes her room & starts another killing spree, before exiting the building - in the altogether, holding a severed head for modesty. She's shot & we cut to opening credits.
The opening titles tell us her outbursts were aggravated by Menstrual Dysphoric Disorder. Yep - on the rag = in a rage. Oh, and her death spawned a local holiday: Blood Night. To celebrate a mass murderess? Menstruation? Who knows.
And, now, we leave history to join a group of 'teens' preparing to celebrate this traditional rite of passage. It's Halloween pranks plus tampons & bloody hand prints. Stay classy, LI.
Our 'teens' (who should've just been written as college-aged) play with a ouija board in the cemetery. Yep, sh#t gets spiritual. They're chastised by Graveyard Gus (Horror icon Bill Moseley), the local drunk, for playin with the devil. Oh - and he may have had an interaction with the dearly departed Ms. Mary.
OK, enough with the heavy stuff: ON TO THE PARTY! Alcohol, dirty dancing. A nerd lays the hottie! WHOO-HOO!
And, the introduction of (Halloween III's) Danielle Harris' character. One of the most convoluted, misplaced stories I've heard. But, it was effective. She's welcomed into the group & the night continues with some good old group porno viewing while couples branch off in search of their own action.
Which, of course, leads to killin! Heads cleaved, screaming victims dragged out of frame! Is it Mary or someone more corporeal? No one knows, no one cares. They're far too drunk & horny.
Violence escalates & the remaining gang flees the house. Who happens to be right there? Graveyard Gus! Friend or suspect?
And, that's the extent of the mystery. The night is sprinkled with supernatural winks, but overall they're ignored. Until Gus sees the naked form of Mary herself. He brings the gang to her grave. But, all is not well - so they end up at the asylum. Where, they learn a secret...
Yep - we're fully into convoluted now. Why in the hell did he take them to the graveyard? Then the asylum? Is there an Idiot's Guide to Exorcism?
Let's just say, more people die, and truths are finally revealed in the last moments.
Overall, the acting is decent, and the pacing doesn't drag. Continuing with some of my other film observations: the sound is really good in this film. Many of the special fx are good. However, there are a few "clearly that's a dummy head" moments. The partying teen thing is cliché - especially given their obvious ability to legally buy alcohol. Overall, a decent slasher flick.
So, why, then, do I think this should be two movies?
Mary is only one of the killers. The other is a living, breathing member of the group.
This could have been a story of an abused/raped asylum refugee who takes her revenge on those who wronged her (as an escapee or a ghost). OR, it coud've been simply the story of a woman with Menstrual Dysphoric Disorder who's a bit beyond 'bitchy' when Aunt Flo visits.
Combining the two makes the story muddled and less interesting. Who's killing whom & why? Why does Mary choose now to appear? Why did the living person start killing? Or have they killed throughout their lives.
Plot holes a'plenty mar this film. Honestly, I think it had potential as a 'one or the other' scenario.
I gave it a 5/10. A well-played single killer flick may have brought it to a 7 or 8.