When a group of students realise that the dreams of their friend Alex about a killer at Alcatraz are much more than just dreams, they decide to go to the island itself to look for answers.
“Clearly influenced by the NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET series” has to be one of the biggest understatements of our current century. Just the first 10 minutes alone could be a low-rent scene for scene rip-off of the first 10 minutes of the original Elm Street. Strangely enough, as the movie draws on, you’ll be grateful for all the mimicry of Slaughterhouse Rock.
In all honesty, I’ve not come across many films that actually wear the influence of Freddy’s movies so unashamedly on their sleeves. Frankly, I’d be happy to see more at this level. I’m not the biggest fan of imitation, but if there’s one thing we as horror fans can be grateful for is how the Elm Street movies have inspired horror films to become more creative with their scares, their special effects and their death scenes.
There are some pretty gruesome scenes as Alex’s dreams get worse. Unfortunately, when the dreams stop halfway through as his unlucky friends make it to Alcatraz, that’s when Slaughterhouse Rock starts to slide downhill with some lazy story-telling, poor dialogue and unnecessary conversations with spirits of the dead.
The blame mostly rests with the bizarre inclusion of Toni Basil. Yes, “Oh Mickey, you’re so fine!” that Tony Basil. Of course, this is the problem with trying to be hip with the times. Enough decades pass by and it just looks like a dumb and dated idea.
As far as the main plot goes, there isn’t an onscreen death until just over an hour into the movie. After which there’s only one intentionally funny moment and one decent death scene, which is cut short by editing.
The female roles seem a bit mixed up here. The final girl – who would typically be Alex’s girl – really doesn’t deserve the title at all. Perhaps because Alex is the final girl. That said, she has little to no screen presence. She doesn’t really do anything except tag along and run around until committing arson in the last few minutes of the movie. Carolyn , Alex’s teacher, is due all the credit, being the strongest and most engaging female role, but the poor bitch gets roasted.
Imitation can be the sincerest form of flattery. It certainly can be… But in this case, it just saves a bad movie from being an absolutely fucking terrible movie.