Friday, January 25, 2013

Movie Review: 'Hide and Go Shriek' (1988)

By Ryan Clark

When you consider the quality of most late 80s slasher films, Hide and Go Shriek really isn't that bad.  Compared to just about any other kind of movie, though... yes, it really is that bad.  Occasionally there are miniscule glimpses of originality, but mostly the film is there to be laughed at, even if that wasn't the intention of the filmmakers (but I suspect maybe it was).  Hide and Go Shriek revels in everything that made the late 80s and early 90s the most cringe-worthy period of American history:  the fashion, the music, the HAIR!!  It's also pretty damn stupid, but that goes without saying. 

Four obnoxious, young couples stay overnight in a furniture store to have sex.  They end up talking and playing hide and seek more than getting laid (I think they're a little bit retarded), and are eventually slaughtered by a kinky killer who dons the clothing of his victims, including women, to lure their partners so he can close in.  Apparently, he would rather be playing dress up than entertaining us by killing teenagers, because he spends much of the film running around, wearing a big 80s wig and a skirt, and giggling like a schoolgirl.  The remaining, clearly sheltered children are a tad bewildered when, in the end, he turns out to be an extra from the film Cruising.

Everything about this movie is awful – the acting, the dialogue, the pacing (which is especially offensive, because it was directed by an editor) – yet it held my interest despite its deficiencies.  Some of the deaths are suitably nasty, including a moderately disturbing elevator decapitation, but it's too little too late due to the sheer amount of horsing around we must endure before we get to the red stuff.  If the kids were even halfway likable, as they are in Final Exam, the wait would be more tolerable.  Still, the fact that Hide and Go Shriek is a watchable and fairly entertaining late 80s slasher is quite a feat in itself.  If that is what you seek, you could do a hellllllll of a lot worse.

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