Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Steven Baio, Dominick Brascia, Jody Gibson, Susan Grant, Tony Griffin
Director: Dominick Brascia
Genres: Comedy, Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy
A group of med students fix up an old house over a weekend. Where a mass murder occurred 10 years earlier. Mayhem ensues. Studio: Koch International Release Date: 03/08/2005 Run time: 87 minutes
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Fellow F13 Fans Take Note - This One Is For Us
Stephen B. O'Blenis | Nova Scotia, Canada | 07/31/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and if so the makers of Evil Laugh must be huge Friday The 13th fans. Fortunately in this case imitation isn't a necessarily a bad thing, and if you like (or love, like I do) the F13 series you'll probably also be pleased with this movie that's so on track with Friday it could have been filmed in the woods just outside Crystal Lake. To be fair, the killer Doesn't look anything like Jason Voorhees, but it's still a very similar movie.
And a very good movie, a solid entry in the stalk-and-slash subgenre of the field, both sexier and somewhat more violent than most....I don't want to say 'clones' because that sounds too derogatory...lesser-known horror movies that have strived to follow in the footsteps of their more famous inspirations (F13, Nightmare On Elm Street, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, et al.) I usually find that most of the, um, strivers tend to be tamer fare than their better known 'source material', but that's not the case here. Things admittedly get off to a shaky start with a terribly botched attempt at humour in the opening minutes (I wonder how many of today's top grossing comedies have taken their cues from that scene?) but get on track quickly and decisively. One of the things working in its favor is the limited number of characters staying at the forest house where most of the movie takes place, meaning that the movie had to find ways to move itself forward without the bloody slaughter of another character every few minutes. Sometimes the rapid-paced carnage right from the start works well (Friday The 13th: The Final Chapter is an example of a successful movie that jumped right into killing territory and maintained that territory at a pretty regular clip throughout) but Evil Laugh is already so close to what has come before that the change of pace dictated by the much smaller cast forces it to be take at least some different paths. Extended build-up, a lot of very sexy sights, and some humour that actually Works, as well as the lurking but limited prescence of the antagonist working as a suspenseful positive, keep the show from dragging one bit before the killer strikes, at which time it distnguishes itself as quite a vicious entry in the line of F13-type fare. A good example of how lighter, even silly moments, and brutality/intensity can co-exist in the same movie without it becoming a campy farce.
It wouldn't be good for horror if too many movies came out that were This close to a movie or series from before, but when it's done good it doesn't hurt once in a while. Incidentally, I'm definately NOT including relatively obscure fare like Tourist Trap, Cutting Class, The Fear or a number of others in the 'too close' or 'imitative' category; those movies were all in the same vein as others that had come before but forged their own distinct identities. Evil Laugh didn't really do that, but it was Good enough that it's not a big worry. Now, if there had been a couple of Sequels, it could have set about differentiating itself....
On its own merits actually outdoing a couple of Jason's rampages, this is strongly recommended for all Friday Fans, or for that matter the Halloween series, Tourist Trap, Wrong Turn and the like."
An entertaining slasher film with quite an interesting cast
Daniel Jolley | Shelby, North Carolina USA | 03/26/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"While the killer doesn't score particularly high marks, the "evil laugh" is way too clownish to strike terror in the heart of anyone or anything, and all of the gore comes to us second hand, I have to say that I got quite a kick out of watching this 1980s slasher. It meets all of the necessary slasher requirements: babes, blood, a pretty decent body count, and at least a little bit of nudity; but wait, there's more: a couple of interesting manners of death, a pre-Scream character putting his knowledge of horror films to good use; a few bits of genre-related humor, and some very interesting actors and actresses among its cast.
Johnny (Stephen Baio) and his fiancée Connie (Kim McKamy) invite their fellow medical and nursing school pals to a house they are thinking of purchasing, ostensibly to get their friends' help in fixing the place up a little bit. The house had previously served as a foster home but has stood vacant for a decade, ever since a doctor's assistant named Martin went crazy and killed all of the kids in the building. The locals won't go near the place, but Johnny and Connie don't believe the story that Martin hangs around to kill anyone who comes to the house - they just want to reopen the place as a new foster home, and the low price makes it possible for them to do so.
By the time the gang shows up, Johnny is nowhere to be found - this will be the first of many bad omens to come (a local delivery boy is also missing). Everyone gets to work as they await his return, taking the necessary dinner, practical joke, and "horny time" breaks along the way. As night closes in, Connie reveals the dark secret of the house's history to everyone, but only one of the young people is apparently able to put 2 and 2 together. The killings begin soon thereafter. These slayings are much more effective early on, before we actually get to see the masked killer for ourselves - the mask is rather silly-looking, and this isn't the most imposing of mad killers you're ever likely to see. Additionally, by the time the film enters the home stretch, it's pretty easy to figure out who the killer is, which robs the ending of any real shock value.
As I was watching this film, I kept trying to figure out where I had seen the actress who plays Connie before. A quick check of the credits identified her as Kim McKamy, a name I did not recognize at all. A little investigation soon revealed that Kim McKamy went on to enter the adult movie industry using the name Ashlyn Gere. Gere is one of the few adult film stars to actually land mainstream roles off and on (she was even in an episode of the X-Files), and she's really not a bad actress at all. She's not the only cast member with an interesting bio, either. Take Jody Gibson (I imagine she has been taken many a time already), who replaced Heidi Fleiss during the Hollywood Madam's imprisonment. Then you have Tony Griffin, who is the son of Merv Griffin. Finally, there's Stephen Baio. Who knew Scott Baio even had a brother in the business? Personally, I find it a rather frightening prospect, as one Baio actor is more than enough for me.
Basically what you have here is an entertaining albeit largely uninspired slasher film that screams 1980s and stars a young woman who went on to become one of the biggest adult film stars of all time. Yes, the ending's sort of lame, and the soundtrack features some of the worst music ever made, but still I ask you, what more could you ask for, my friends?"