9/26/2014

All Cheerleaders Die

 
Title: All Cheerleaders Die
Writers/ Directors: Lucky McKee and Chris Siverston
Cast: Caitlin Stasey, Sianoa Smit-McPhee, Brooke Butler, Tom Williamson, Amanda Grace Cooper,
Reanin Johannink

Alexis (Felisha Cooper) dies in a cheerleader accident and her childhood friend, the beautiful Maddy (Caitlin Stasey), decides to join the squad. Especially, after having found out that Alexis' star football playing boyfriend Terry (Tom Williamson) has wasted no time and is now dating gorgeous cheerleader Tracey (Brooke Butler). She sets out to break them up. She tells Tracey of Terry's cheating ways with her and even seduces Tracey herself. They even have a lesbian tryst.

But, soon things turn deadly. Tracey confronts Terry, who proves that he is a sleazebag. He hits her. This enrages the other three girls (another cheerleader, her sister who is the team mascot, and Maddy, herself). They drive off angered, with Terry and his football team/ friends giving them chase. The car is forced off the road and crashes into a river. Maddy's ex-girlfriend, beautiful Wiccan/ goth babe Leena (Siaona Smit-McPhee) uses her magic to reanimate them. But, soon two problems reveal themselves: one- the two sisters have switched bodies by accident and two- the girls need blood to heal themselves and quench their thirst. They form a family, of sorts, and the next day they are back in school. This leads to the displeasure ofTerry and some of his crew. And, Terry soon reveals himself to be a truly evil bastard. 

All Cheerleaders Die is actually a remake of a video that McKee shot some years back. While, I never seen that film, this is an excellent film, that ranks as one of the most fun and sexy horror flicks of the year. While, the movie is filled with exploitative subject matter: hot babes, nudity, cheerleaders, lesbians, etc, these elements actually are well handled and add to the fun of the film. In lesser hands this movie would probably have been mostly stupid and insulting, as well as being just a simpleminded skin and gorefest providing nothing more.

But, thanks to  strong directing and a lively script that is not the case. As is with much of his work McKee, with added help this time around from co-writer/ co-director Siverston, is able to create strong female characters, that are much more than just pretty faces and hot bodies. He has a real understanding of women. In most films, the cheerleaders would have been written as bitchy or stupid or both. Here, they are all likeable and all believable. The story may not be ground breaking, but somehow it still manages to feel somewhat fresh. This is definitely due to it being handled in a manner that is always entertaining. And, while the movie is undeniably funny, it does not shy away from heavy subject matter like abusive relationships and rape. Kudos for being able to this so well.

It also helps that the whole cast is excellent. That the women happen to be breathtaking is just an added bonus. I was most in love with Stasey, who is my new horror crush. Butler and Smit-McPhee also took my breath away, as did Amanda Grace Cooper and Reanin Johannink, as the two sisters. Meanwhile, Williamson makes for a truly despicable villain, one whose death you will be cheering (pun not intended) on to happen.

The movie with it's use of gothy, sexy witch babe, lesbians, and, of course, cheerleaders, seems
tailor made for me. It's handling of these fetishistic themes coupled with the beautiful cast make for a very eye pleasing experience. There some great shots of the beautiful cast, and even nudity in the form of the stunning Johannik. Butler not only gives us some lesbian love, but she has one of the most memorable scenes walking across the street in just her undies. She has an ass to die for! 


It also has some nice gore, with stabbings, bitings, bludgeonings, and more. The make-up FX by Kevin Carter are really quite good. There is some CGI, but it's well done and used appropriately.  All of these postive factors comes together to add to a really suspenseful and edge of your seat climax. The ending is fun, too, and a little unexpected.

All Cheerleaders Die is a great example of how to do a horror-comedy. It'll make laugh and you will have a blast watching it. But, it also knows when to take the horror seriously. McKee is one of my favorite directors in the genre, as with films his best work, The Woman, May, and his episode of Masters of Horror: Sick Girl, he proves that he knows how to write some of the best female characters in the entire genre. It has everything that you could ask for in a horror film (lesbians, gore, babes, zombies, cheerleaders, sexy goth/ witch chick) in the confines of a smart and highly entertaining script. It all add up to a movie that I give my highest possible recommendation. It's streaming on NetFlix so see it now!

**** out of ****

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