Sleepaway Camp II: Unhappy Campers (1988)
Here are some of my observations as I watched the film:
- Starring Bruce Springsteen’s sister! And Emilio Estevez’ sister!
- Lots of good late 80’s mullets.
- Twice as much nudity as the original.
- So many sluts at this camp. Like 87% of all the girls at this camp are loosey-goosey.
- There’s zero mystery in this sequel since we see Angela kill the campers she deems “unclean” and disorderly.
- There’s a good ‘ol pantry raid scene. I wish this was more commonplace today.
- It’s beyond creepy that the head of the camp is known by “Uncle John.”
- Everyone hates this camp! EVERYONE!
- Why are there leeches in a toilet?
- Killer Angela blatantly tells another camper that she drowned a boy when she was younger. Moments later she bludgeons another camper when he opens up her lair of death. She then takes them both hostage. That’s so unlike Angela.
- Angela kills the other main counselor with his own car battery acid. Kinda cool actually.
- Ironically Angela loves camp and wants to be a great counselor but she can’t do much when she kills all the campers.
- Not exactly sure why she’s keeping Molly alive other than she’s the nicest camper, especially to Angela. Of course she escapes.
- Did Angela really think that the desolate shack/lair was never going to be found, especially when it’s on the camp grounds?
- Angela actually tells Molly to “Stop! I won’t hurt you…I just want to be your friend!” While chasing after her. Surprised that didn’t work.
- Molly “supposedly” dies while falling a mere 3 feet cliff onto some boulders.
- So the ending speeds everything up. Another counselor finds every other remaining members of the cast dead and then Angela kills her. Angela leaves the camp, hitch-hikes, then kills the driver and finds Molly on the road and the film ends. Until the next Sleepaway Camp…
- “Thank you for reading the credits.” Nice. I would’ve loved to have seen a “Angela will return in Sleepaway Camp III!“
- A P.S. has Angela popping in a cabin and saying “Goodnight Campers.”
Is It Actually Scary: I’d hate to compare this film to the original classic but I guess since this is a continuing sequel I just have to. Its a very weak and pale comparison to the original. While the first one wasn’t jump-out-of-my-seat scary, it had great death scenes and creepy scenes and atmosphere as well as a great chilling twist. This one is a carbon copy of all the other dull and by-the-books slasher flicks of the late 80’s.
How Much Gore: A lot of the deaths are blatantly shown and there’s a good amount of gore. Like I mentioned above, this film is done in the vein of late 80’s slasher films and at this stage of the genre they all tried to top one another with gratuitous violence and gore.
Best Scene: There’s a great beheading as well as a battery acid thrown in the face death scene but one scene worth mentioning is when Angela, dressed as Leatherface, kills two other campers, one dressed as Jason Voorhees, the other Freddy Krueger with a chainsaw. By this point in the film, we see that the filmmakers are just having fun with the genre and making it over-the-top with gore and slapstick kills. Adding a nod of homage to three of the greats: Jason, Freddy and Leatherface, is a way of winking to the audience at how much fun they are having and how much fun and popular this genre could be.
Worst Scene: The ending falls kinda flat in my opinion. Instead of killing Molly and Sean when she first has the chance, she does the ‘ol villain explains it all schtick. Then haphazardly gives Molly enough time to escape and give chase which ends up being lackluster. Then the ending speeds up having one last counselor discover every other dead body Angela left lying around, then is killed by Angela and Angela catches up to Molly who thinks she made out alive. Its not stupid but its weak.
Any Nudity: Like I mentioned, most of the teenage campers are slutty and easy. They just don’t sneak off to have sex with the boys, they like to tease Angela and other campers by strutting around showing their boobs off.
Overall: This film is attempting to make Angela as iconic as Jason or Freddy however, when we are already aware that she’s the killer from the get-go and see her misdeeds it makes for a rather boring slasher film. No mystery or motive in fact. Sure we know Jason is killing everyone but in his earlier, better, films he wasn’t always shown doing the killing and he was masked. I’m baffled that the filmmakers decided to show Angela as the killer from the beginning when they attempted to conceal her as the killer in the first film. The original had a great mystery, especially the twist, and this film doesn’t even try to make the killer a mystery. It would’ve worked well considering Angela is “fixed” in both her gender and mental state (says she and her doctors). Oh what could have been a great sequel. But it is a load of good 80’s slasher fun!
Score: 6 Toilet Leeches (out of 10)