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Sunday 9 October 2011

Burl reviews Welcome to Spring Break! (1989)

Hi, Burl talking! It’s time for a review of a mighty odd little movie, Welcome to Spring Break, which is apparently also known as Nightmare Beach, despite the fact that none of the particularly nightmarish stuff happens at the beach! Ha ha, except for the prankster guy, who does the old fake shark number – I guess he’s a grown-up version of those jokester kids from Jaws! And of course we can’t forget the prankster kid in Malibu Beach – though this probably isn’t an older version of him, because that Malibu Beach kid seemed to have learned his lesson by the end of the movie!

Anyway, it’s spring break in Fort Lauderdale, and the place is crawling with Lauderdale Ladies and the mullethairs who love them! But somebody is killing off these freewheeling hedonists – is it the wrongly-convicted but recently-executed biker come back from the dead? Is it hardbottomed cop John Saxon? Is it one of the other bikers, or the weird priest, or the desperate mayor, or the peeping-tom motel manager, or is it maybe failed punt returner Skip Banacek? Ha ha, my money was on Skip Banacek, but this movie is nothing if not filled with surprises!

The killer uses all sorts of methods to murderize his prey, but by far his favorite is electricity! He drives a motorcycle with special handgrips for the passenger, but if you hold on to those things, you’ll get zapped! He uses the motorcycle a couple of times and then just grabs whatever electrical wires are handy! He also frequently employs the garrote, and once he uses the element of fire!

Skip Banacek is the hero of the movie, I guess – after his buddy gets zapped, he teams up with a local waitress whose sister had been an earlier victim of the leather-clad killer! Together, this not particularly dynamic duo bait the killer into what they might consider a trap – but they’re a pretty incompetent couple of folks, ha ha! Skip loses his gun just they way he lost that football in the Orange Bowl, and then, after the world’s shortest chase scene, the killer suffers an extremely unlikely accident and dies in an appropriate manner!

The great thing about Welcome to Spring Break is that, like only a precious few other movies, such as Final Exam, it manages to achieve a great balance of spring break stuff, like boobs and beer-drinking antics, with the wacky murder stuff! (And unlike Final Exam, it’s actually pretty gory!) Put it this way: have you ever watched a teen sex comedy and about halfway through it thought “Ha ha, I wish somebody would start killing this bunch of goofs!” Well that’s exactly what happens in Welcome to Spring Break!

Ha ha, I give Welcome to Spring Break two beaver hunts, mostly for mixing two genres so seamlessly! Take a look yourself, and maybe, just maybe, you’ll agree!

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