THE DORM THAT DRIPPED BLOOD (1982)
(Aka PRANKS/DEATH DORM)
Director: Stephen W. Carpenter & Jeffrey Owbrow
Cast: Pamela Holland, Laurie Lapinski,
Stephen Sachs, David Snow, Daphne Zuniga.
It’s Christmas, everybody is going home for the holidays, except that is for crew of five students who are staying to dismantle their university dorm for demolition. They have a few weeks to do the job, and are supposed to be the only ones on campus, but they are not alone! There is a psycho loose on campus that is slowly slicing the student numbers down.
All is not as it seems as the killer slices and dices his way through the students and anyone else who happens by. Who knows it may actually be more sinister than just the campus weirdo (ohh isn’t there just always one!) hanging around!
Yup we got a psycho killer on campus. As the Psychoesque string music tells us before the opening credits are even finished.
A run of the mill slice and dice affair, until that is the killer is revealed, but well you probably would have guessed who it was. And after the killer is revealed all seems to go wrong. The police come along to errm help out I guess. What we are left with is the film leaving an open ending as well as a non-conformist stench in the air.
It does look hell of a bright and sunny and warm for Xmas and ski’s, probably filmed in the height of summer with the crew wearing T-shirts as well as the cast.
A small part for Daphne Zuniga here making her film debut.
Certainly nothing spectacular! The performances and the film itself are run of the mill leaving not much to make it stick out and it certainly drowns in the mire of dozens of other campus slasher movies. I guess the identity of the killer won’t be all that much of a surprise (I know it wasn’t for me!) but the ending might be. Obviously leaving the possibility of a sequel that didn’t happen probably due to the unconventional ending going against the grain, which does not create a nice feeling of catharsis, safety and closure for the audience, which probably made it under perform at the box office.
But going against the grain, even though the grain is more satisfying for the audience, aint always bad. Watch it yourself and decide. Me? Well shit I like it! Going against the grain is always good, just not always for film careers or bums on seats obsessed producers more interested in the moola than any opportunity to give us something a little different or new. So credit to the cast and crew here for giving us this non-cathartic feature, but in that way making it quite satisfying in itself for doing so! As long as you don’t want every movie to tell you that “Hey there are killers out there, but well we always get them! ” then it may be worth a watch,it aint particularly gory or scary though that’s for sure!
The directing duo of Stephen W. Carpenter and Jeffrey Owbrow also worked as producer, editor, cinematographers, and screenwriters on this film as well as several others, which include The Power (1984) and The Kindred (1987).
Review by Giovanni Pistachio, Giovanni can be contacted at: –
© Owned Giovanni Pistachio 15/03/2003