Search the Cinema Head Cheese Archives!

July 9, 2014

Movie Review: Bloody Birthday (1981, Severin Films)

Thinking about having a kid? Want to expand your family so you can have more love in your life (and a lot of snot and poop from what I’m told)? That’s cool. Just don’t give birth on the night of a lunar eclipse. That’ll fuck your plans up but good.

Bloody Birthday begins with a trio of families birthing unto the world three kids - two boys and a girl. It’s also the night of a lunar eclipse. Isn’t that fascinating? Not really. And you’ll find out why.

The story jumps ahead ten years later to a young teenage couple making out in a cemetery. Um, what? The gal is worried about being seen “doing it” out in the open. Really, sweetheart? That's what you’re worried about? The boyfriend is nothing but accommodating so he leads her to an OPEN FUCKING GRAVE where they can bow-chicka-wow-wow in private. And then promptly die.

After the murders, the local Sheriff thinks discussing the travesty openly and honestly with a bunch of 10-year olds is the best thing to do. To be fair, a broken jump rope handle was found at the scene and personally I think they all look like they could have done it. And it soon becomes apparent that three of these kids are responsible.

I know, right? 10-year old psychos. As if kids weren’t creepy enough when they’re normal. This flick is a little like Village of the Damned but with more baseball bats and less telekinesis. Come to think of it, this is basically The Bad Seed tripping balls on crank and Mad Dog 20/20.

When fellow classmate, Timmy, and his big sister, Joyce, threaten the secret of the little murderers, they decide to take care of them, like they’re the god damned cosa nostra or something. Of course no one could ever believe these little tykes would ever do such horrible things and so they get away, literally, with murder. And a lot of it.

Joyce, and her convenient study of astrological phenomena, works on astrological charts and figures out that every so many years an alignment of certain planets is really really bad. A lot of energies, like empathy, are blocked from coming to earth or some shit like that. Gee, could that have been the same time as the eclipse when these kids were born? Derrrrr.

Eventually the adults catch on and stop the murderous moppets from continuing their spree. Well, at least two of them.

OMG these kids were so damned creepy! They kept a photo album with articles about their murders, like full fledged adult psychos. Their combined IQs must go so beyond the charts because they were quite logical and calculating in their dastardly deeds: knowing how to hot wire a car AND make it drive by itself; dressing in appropriate coveralls when having to get rid of a dead body; using a jacket as an attempt to muffle the sound of a gunshot; etc. etc. etc. 

All the kids’ acting in this was awesome. A sly smile here and there can go a long way in saying “yeah, I know you know I’m a serial killer but I also know I’m ten and no on will ever believe you over me”. I also love the relationship between Joyce and Timmy. Sure it’s a little heavy handed on the idea that non-psycho kids will have a better relationship with an older sibling but she really does looks out for him.

Most of the soundtrack in this sounds like Psycho and Friday the 13th had a baby so instead of adding atmosphere, I found it distracting. But that’s just me.

Here’s what I had a hard time believing. There’s no way a 10-year old kid could wield a Colt Python (most likely a .357) one handed. Not only would his accuracy be non-existent but his little shoulder would have blown right out of its socket, if not his entire arm and/or hand. He wouldn’t be able to shoot more than 6 bullets at a time either. I also found it difficult to fathom that an 18-year old girl would have to struggle with a 10-year old girl who’s trying to garrote her with a regular rope. This isn’t Galaxy Quest. There’s aren’t a hundred little girls, just one. Flip that bitch over your shoulder and kick her in the kidneys!

Aside from these more obvious physics issues and idiotic eclipse bullshit, I was highly entertained. Creepy kid movies are always awesome, even if not always well produced or acted or written or directed. Something about them hits a primal note in my subconscious ooze and that makes me smile.

3 Hatchets (out of 5) 

No comments:

Post a Comment