The original Prom Night was a so-so slasher film released in 1980. Hardly a movie that needed or really deserved a remake but it got one anyway in 2008.
The movie begins as high-school student, Donna Keppel (Brittany Snow), returns home. She find her parents dead at the hands of her former teacher, Richard Fenton (Johnathon Schaech). It turns out he is obsessed with her & thinks killing her loved ones will get them together.
Yeah, that’s how love works.
She seemingly gets away before he catches up with her outside & ‘jump scares’ her. She then wakes up, three years later having had a nightmare. That is one of the many times the movie will attempt to make the viewer jump only for it to be a ‘dream’. Utter laziness.
Donna now lives with her aunt & uncle but the murderous event has taken its toll on her. She now takes anti-depressants & is regularly seeing a therapist. Regardless she is due to graduate & plans to attend her school’s prom night alongside her boyfriend, Bobby (Scott Porter) & friends.
Detective Winn (Idris Elba), the man responsible for putting Fenton away, discovers that he has escaped from prison. The hows & the whys aren’t important, apparently. What is though, is that the killer wants to finish what he started 3 years prior. Assuming the identity of a man he has murdered, Fenton gets a room in the hotel where the prom is taking place & sets about murdering anyone who crosses his path.
Cleaning lady, hotel receptionist, Donna’s friends…Fenton’s bloodlust knows no bounds & with Winn on his tail, his time is short. All of this is kept from Donna by her Aunt & Uncle who decide that she should be allowed to enjoy her prom night.
As remakes go, Prom Night doesn’t do a terrible job of matching the original. It’s a basic slasher flick with no surprises, lazy jump scares & below par kills. The best thing about Prom Night is the acting, several of the cast do good jobs in their roles. Johnathon Schaech plays the killer Fenton with plenty of menace & the disconnect he appears to have to the killing adds decent levels of tension.
Unfortunately there is little else to get excited about, the boring plot & ‘seen it all’ before events drag it down to levels that are more likely to put you to sleep. The biggest crime any horror movie can never commit is to be boring & Prom Night is extremely boring. Extremely forgettable. It wasn’t a tough job to improve upon the original but this remake doesn’t even try, choosing instead to tick every slasher horror trope going.
Prom Night - Remake