Shriek If You Know What I Did Last Friday the 13th (2000) — The superior Scream parody

“Of course it’s stupid if no one else sings!”

Justin’s rating: If nothing else, I learned about the dangers of Ex-Lax from this film

Justin’s review: Cast your mind back to the cinematic tragedy which was the summer of 2000. You there? It was the worst summer movie season ever — at least until summer of 2001 — and moviegoers became so starved for entertainment that a low-budget Scream-ripoff named Scary Movie was elevated to one of the most popular films of the summer.

Despite being completely gross, unoriginal and devoid of laughter, movie audiences flocked to this Wayans brothers’ sign of the apocalypse. Yet few people realized that another, much better horror movie Scream parody came out that same year, only to be run over by cultural ignorance and sentenced to straight-to-video hell.

I only caught Shriek If You Know What I Did Last Friday the 13th on cable myself, and I have been kicking myself ever since for not rooting out this film earlier. A casual glance might label Shriek cheezier and even more low-brow than Scary Movie, but then a casual glance at me might label me “three-eyed” and “capable of spontaneous acne,” so who’s to judge a video by its ripoff cover? Not you, Mr. Cheetos Breath and Ms. Blunderbra!

Let’s quickly compare the differences between these two postmodern works of satire. Scary Movie was essentially a shot-for-shot remake of the original Scream that went for the gross-out when at all possible. Shriek is more of a Hot Shots!-style parody, taking potshots at horror movies across the board with other pop culture references thrown in. Although the sight gags are sometimes priceless, Shriek’s main strength is the hilarious and often times clever dialogue.

New kid Dawson enrolls at Bulimia High School on the eve of a senseless murder. He teams up with Slab, a brainless jock; Barbara, a blonde beauty queen; Martina, who may or may not be a lesbian; and poor, poor Boner, cursed with a unpronounceable name.

While they might be parody characters of horror and high school films, they’re extremely fun and likable as a group (watch them rip up mall cop Doughy as a team). While Scream and I Know What You Did Last Summer are obvious influencing factors, the kids seem to bump into practically every horror film, from Friday the 13th to Child’s Play to Porky’s to Grease. Yes, Grease.

One of my favorite bits is when Barbara is cornered in the bathroom by the killer — and the Mentos song comes on, so she gets all perky manages to thwart the killer by acting like she’s in one of those classic commercials. That was so very grin-worthy.

Naturally, there’s a killer (whose identity is extremely suspect), and one of the best running gags in the film involve Ghostface offing students in the background of every third scene or so. He’s pretty much constantly fooled by the main cast, which kept cracking me up. For instance, Ghostface starts chasing Martina on the track course, but the cheering fans convince him to win the race instead. He’s all happy, getting doused with Gatorade and picked up by fans… and then kinda realizes he lost his prey.

I feel many of the lesser parodies fail because the filmmakers become so enamored with a single joke that they’ll make it the basis for an entire scene, foregoing any other laughs until the scene is over. Shriek peppers us with so many gags that even when a joke does fall flat (and hey, some do), we’re on to the next funny joke before we even notice. And, to my everlasting sack of joy, there are some jokes that are even (wait for it…) SUBTLE! Not pushed up into my eyeballs in an effort to force me to laugh!

Maybe there’s little justice in the world, when a trashy flick like Scary Movie gets all the press and Shriek If You Know What I Did Last Friday the 13th remains a relatively undiscovered classic, but maybe the fabled powers of the Mutants can restore honor and dignity to a genre-of-a-genre long since dead on arrival.

Andie’s rating: What’s wrong with a promising future in a lightweight sorority at a state college?

Andie’s review: Okay, so I was fairly hesitant to view this movie because for the most part, I hated Scary Movie. I thought its parodies were lame. I could’ve written better stuff. And I thought it was extremely gross at parts. I figured since Shriek was a straight-to-video Scary Movie that couldn’t possibly be good at all.

Well, slap my ass and call me Judy! Honestly, I thought this movie was extremely humorous. Of course it was dumb, most parody movies are, but it’s dumbness was hysterical and it did such a better job in parodying movies than Scary Movie.

What I liked most about Shriek is that it wasn’t just a parody of Scream and I Know What You Did Last Summer, which is nice because another movie featuring Jennifer-Sarah-Felicity-Love-Shannon-Rose’s breasts would’ve been too much for me. Anyway, those two movies were the basis for the plot, but a lot of other movies were made fun of and there were a lot of things that weren’t parodies that were incredibly funny too.

For starters, the character names were great. My personal favorite was Hagitha Utslay. It takes you a minute to catch on, which is nice because it isn’t just thrown in your face. I also liked Dawson and Boner, and the “is she or not” butch character being named Martina was classic. I think her sexual orientation was a lot funnier than the guy in Scary Movie because it was slightly more subtle. Slightly. There is, however, a line about tacos that made me laugh really hard, even if it is pretty gross.

I think my favorite running gag is that in almost every scene the killer is just in the background snatching people. It’s so funny! The best snatch is in the hall at school where the killer just comes out of a locker and grabs a girl and drags her inside.

Also, what’s nice about watching this movie on DVD is that you can pause it perfectly to read all the funky little signs in the background, which are a nice attention to detail. Things like that make a movie like this worth of multiple viewings. The opening scene is also great, I like how the killer starts off in a hockey mask and his face melts into the Scream face. That was ingenius.

From the cats named Cheap Shot, Lame Gag, and Dead Horse to the Pop-Up Video chase scene to the hilarious Grease parody, this movie is definitely worth a viewing, if for nothing else than to hear what comes over the PA system at this high school. The voice who says them is so monotone and serious, it is so funny! As far as parodies go, it’s no Airplane, but it certainly captures the teen movie craze better than Scary Movie did. This movie is actually making me curious to see Not Another Teen Movie and compare. So go check out Shriek if You Know What I Did Last Friday the 13th.

Didja notice?

  • Outwit your killer by running around the kitchen island for 500 laps
  • How the Ghostface mask came to be
  • Bulimia Falls High School “Bingers & Purgers Welcome!”
  • New kids ARE singled out!
  • That Boner kid is Danny Strong, Jonathan from Buffy the Vampire Slayer! You know, that geeky kid who Buffy was always saving, and in the sixth season is one of the nerd villains.
  • Girls’ imaginations are way more twisted than guys’
  • Fish and guns on display at the principal’s office
  • “KILLER” in number 32 jersey
  • An Anthrax missile in the school… eerie, huh?
  • EmpTV (I just loved this parody slogan)
  • Schools have tanning salons
  • Mrs. Tingle as a teacher (parody of the Katie Holmes “Teaching Mrs. Tingle” film)
  • “Frankenstein: Not all angry villagers were anti-semites”
  • Baywatch slo-mo running!
  • CPR has never been sexier
  • Vending machines with term papers, handguns, and alibis
  • Overflowing trashcan, “Notes from the Killer”
  • Truly awesome Mentos parody
  • My dear Lord… a Grease parody song
  • Chariots of Fire song during race
  • Rock, paper, scissors!
  • What is it with sorority girls and Zima?
  • Sometimes you just can’t kill a girl with a garage door opener
  • Pop-up video chase scene
  • Tom Arnold really didn’t need to be in this film
  • After the end credits, stay tuned for a “Where The Hell Are They Now?” segment

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