Today’s installment is me pulling an audible. Looking at the list, the actual film slated was Dario Argento’s Phenomena (aka Creepers), but I just couldn’t handle another Italian horror film again. So, I went another way, choosing the horror spoof Student Bodies.
It’s only 1981, and there’s already a well-established pattern of horror movie tropes, and Student Bodies plays on them all. I mean, you could argue that even more than something like Evil Laugh, this was the movie that Scream ripped off, with lines like, “When people go wild and crazy, wild and crazy things happen to them.”
Of course, given the fact that this is essentially the Airplane version of horror movies, this actually makes Student Bodies more like Return to Horror High (Scary Movie before there was a Scream). It is super-dumb. It is not subtle. “The Breather” is as if the unrestrained id of every teenaged boy was allowed to run rampant in a voiceover, and it’s occasionally funny, but rarely hilarious.
Granted, the movie does have its moments of greatness. It’s usually when Student Bodies avoids the obvious and just gets straight-up weird that its at its best. The shop teacher’s lecture early on, wherein he states, “Perhaps man’s highest cultural achievement is the horse head bookend”? Brilliant, as well as Malvert the janitor’s “No, since accident, Malvert pee red. You know good urologist?”
Same goes for the interstitial that might be one of the finest cutscenes ever.
See? Weird. I miss the fact that movies in the ’70s and ’80s were completely willing to do things which made no sense plotwise, just fucking because. Student Bodies isn’t exactly a calvalcade of brilliance, and it’s comprised of a juvenile sense of humor like The Kentucky Fried Movie that comes straight from the junior high locker room.
I’m not usually one to suggest completely writing something off, but the kills are bloodless, the humor’s juvenile, and the best bits are still funny out of context. Pull the highlights off YouTube and ignore this one.