4) Sleepaway Camp
I reccomend this film with a caveat: you kind of need to already be a horror fan to really get a lot out of Sleepaway Camp. To the uninitiated, it will just seem like the most cliched horror film in existence. It hits all the familiar notes: kids at a summer camp, unresolved childhood traumas, elaborately orchestrated death sequences… you know the drill. But NO other horror film is THIS cliched. Compared to our mental image of what slasher films are like, Sleepaway Camp just seems like another example of the genre. Compared to actual slasher films, it comes off as an incredibly sly parody. I refuse to believe that this was accidental. Everything’s just a little too… off. First of all, I know it was the 80s, but did camp counselors really dress like this?
And the murder set-pieces are outlandish. One guy dies when the killer tossing a beehive into the outhouse he’s using. It’s Saw as directed by the Three Stooges. By the way: DO NOT read any other reviews of Sleepaway Camp – or even its Wikipedia page – before you see it. Unlike %90 of horror movies, this one has secrets that are worth keeping secret. I don’t mean the fact that Angela – the spooky little girl with the tragic past – is the killer. OBVIOUSLY she’s the killer. I’m talking about the… look, just see it, okay?
Random trivia: Sleepaway Camp spawned two sequels, neither of which involved the original writer/director/producer Robert Hiltzik. Hiltzik shot a sequel of his own in 2003, which will finally be released sometime next month after FIVE DANG YEARS of tuning the special effects. Which means that Return to Sleepaway Camp is either going to totally suck, or it will be the greatest film of the 21st century.