This week's entry is rare, in that I have no prior experience with it at all. Don't know anyone who's seen it, have never seen a trailer or scene from it, nada. I'm still on the fence if that's a good or a bad sign. Ayway, it's called Wishcraft, so put on your SPOILER-glasses, and let's wish for a good slasher flick this week!
The opening scene shows somebody typing a letter. While he's typing, the credits reveal that the cast includes the late Zelda Rubinstein(the medium from the Poltergeist movies), Meatloaf(using his real name...usually a bad sign), and Charlie Talbert(ANGUS!...neat!). After our secretary is done with her letter, the movie settles into an average high school in Averageville.
There, we meet our 2 main characters, Brett Bumpers and Samantha Warren. Brett is trying to tutor Samantha in World History, but it's her oral performance on a pen that has him pretty flustered. She sees his reaction, and further distracts him by asking Brett what his interests are. He mumbles that he like reading and food and movies and girls and, golly, all sortsa neat stuff! She laughs and tells him that she just won a bet--her boyfriend, Cody, thought Brett was gay. Thern she skips merrily away, tra la la la la...
On his way home from school, Brett stops to watch Sam and the other cheerleaders practice. One of the other girls even teases her, saying that Brett has a crush on her. As Brett leaves, the squad does a cheer devoted to Cody. Ow, dude.
At the dinner table, Brett's father tells him that he wants them to work at the office together over the summer. Yeah, that sounds like a fun summer! Then his mother humiliates him by asking if he has a date to the Spring Formal. Wait, wasn't one of my early blogs also about a movie where they kept calling the prom a "Spring Formal"? Weird, it's like a sub-genre, or something.
So, the next day, we get to sit in on Brett and Sam's history class. The teacher, Mr. Turner, is talking about Hitler and WWII, when an attractive student named Desiree arrives late. Mr. Turner puts her on the spot with some impromptu questions about Hitler, then gets pissed off when he sees Cody and Sam flirting. He decides to make an example of Cody, who tries to get his buddy Jimbo(Angus!!!) to answer the question for him.
When that fails, Mr. Turner makes Sam his next target. Brett turns and tries to whisper the answer to her, but Mr. Turner hears him. He lets Brett answer the question, which effectively enlarges the target that the jocks already have on him and his kind.
After school, Brett goes online to chat with a friend about his feelings for Sam. The friend reminds him that Cody would kick his ass if he ever made a move on Samantha. Then he just cracks wise until Brett is cheered up again.
Later, while sitting under a tree, Brett and his stoner friend Howie(maybe the same guy from the previous scene, maybe not....so far, I'm lapsing into a boredom-coma) watch the jocks have a near-fight with some lether jacket-types. Nothing happens. That should be the title of this thing.
When Brett gets home, he finds a mysterious package has arrived for him. He opens it in his room, revealing a letter and an ornately decorated box. The letter claims that the box contains a "totem", capable of granting him 3 wishes. Inside the box is something that looks like a body part, and Brett quickly shuts the lid in disgust.
At lunch the next day, he tells Howie about the package. Howie scolds him about throwing it away, then steals the key to Brett's moped. They find the totem still in the trash, and Howie encourages Brett to make a wish...a practice wish, if you will.
Brett wishes for Samantha to go to the dance with him. DUH. Throw in a pointless cameo by Vincent Price, and this is an episode of The Brady Bunch. Gosh, I really can't imagine what'll happen next! I hope he finds a tiki mask and masks 17 more wishes!
The very next day, Sam asks Brett to the dance. Wow. After he agrees, Sam leaves to tell Cody that she plans to go to the dance with Brett instead of him. Meanwhile, Brett brings the "totem" to an animal expert, who tells him that it's a bull penis. Oh, and it's very, very old. And the bull is probably pretty upset.
When Brett arrives to bring Sam to the dance, her parents give him the cold shoulder. She apologizes on the way to the car, prompting Brett to ask her why she asked him to be her date. Sam gets flustered, and admits that she doesn't really know.
At the dance, Cody and Angus(JIMBO!!!!...Shit, I did it backwards!) watch while Sam dances with an uncomfortable-looking Brett. Then Cody is left behind as even his friend gets to dance. Ha! Take that, popular guy!
Brett does much better on a slow dance, but the night ends as awkwardly as it began. When they get to her house, Samantha tells Brett that she thinks that they should just go back to the way things were, when they return to school. Brett looks like a kitten shot by a cannonball, but he agrees.
Jimbo goes out with a girl after the dance, and both are smashed. They nearly hit another vehicle, then safely drive to an open field, where they both relax on the grass. Some automated sprinklers ruin it for them, though, and they trudge back to the car. Jimbo can't find his keys, so he leaves his date by the car, while he goes back under the sprinklers.
They turn off when he arrives, and he starts to think a prank is being played on him. Jimbo then encounters a stranger wearing a hooded outfit, and proceeds to get thrown around like a rag doll(down to see her cutie), then hacked up. His date, who exits the car to look for him, discovers his severed head on a pole.
After the field is closed off as a crime scene, they call in Meatloaf to solve the murder. (this is the point where I whip off a pair of sunglasses, declare it a "ham-icide", and The Who kick in with a scream...) Instead, he defers to the medical examiner(Poltergeist chick), and she says that the cuts were done with surgical precision, except the decapitation, which was rougher. She suggests that multiple weapons were used, and that the killer possessed immense strength. Oh, and Jimbo was still alive by the time he was decapitated.
At a school assembly, I learn that the "field" was a golf course. Okey doke. The principal introduces Meatloaf as "Detective Sparky"(Iwish I were kidding), and he gets up to speak to the kids about the case. He announces that he and his team are going to begin by interviewing the students that very day.
Ater school, Brett and Sam talk about Jimbo's murder. That somehow leads into a discussion about their plans after high school, and they discover that they both want to travel a little before going right into college. Gosh, it's like they're destined to be together!
During one of the student interviews, Sparky questions Eddie, who looks like what you'd get if you combined Kurt Russell with Silly Putty. Eddie is asked about the brief incident he had with the jocks several scenes ago, but he plays it cool. Even when he's asked if he owns a knife, it doesn't get much of a reaction. They eventually let him leave.
Howie goes to the principal's office, mostly because he wants to speak to the attractive female grief counselor. The principal sees right through his act, and offers to hug his grief out right there. Then he sends Howie away with a huge eye-roll.
That night, Brett makes his second wish. He wants Sam to love and be with him forever, but not in a way that seems forced. Geez, why not just ask for the ability to fly and have heat vision, while you're at it? Any way she ends up with you, Brett, is going to be forced and unnatural. Truth hurts.
By the way, have I mentioned that the cleft in Brett's chin is so deep, it looks like he has a pair of butt cheeks under his face? No? Well, I have now. Now, just try watching the rest of Wishcraft without being distracted by his ass-chin....Ha!
Anyway, now that I've tormented y'all...So, Brett makes his second wish, which seems as silly and frivolous as the first one. I mean, he could literally wish for ANYTHING, and his first 2 wishes are for things he could maybe do for himself. Ask for great wealth. Immortality. Heck do what Jonathan did on Buffy, and ask to be the most important person in the world. Think big!
During school, Sam drops by Brett's home. She gets all googly-eyed when talking to him, and he invites her inside. She tells Brett that she woke up thinking about him, and she can't think about anyone else. Even though he's the one who wished for this, Brett looks creeped-out by all the attention.
Her new feelings don't sit well with Cody. As soon as she dumps him, she calls Brett to ask him for a date. Sam invites him to come over that weekend, on a night when her parents will be out. Brett looks like he might faint, but agrees to the date.
At Sam's house, she gives Brett a lap dance. It ends with a kiss, as well as some heavy petting. Boy, this guy's wishes move fast! It's like a fanfic written by a 14-year-old at this point.
In the school cafeteria, Brett refuses to give Howie any details about his "date" with Sam. He does, however, flirt with her from across the room, which drives Howie crazy. So Brett is okay with forcing someone to have feelings for him, but too much of a gentleman to brag about his conquests? Yeah, this is definitely some kid's fan-fiction made into a movie, for sure.
In Mr. Turner's empty class, Brett asks the teacher about the significance of magic in different cultures. Turner presses him for info about this sudden interest, and Brett makes up some bull about his younger sibling getting a magic wand. The teacher just sort of smiles at him. Foreshadowing?
Brett and Howie then debate over the power of the totem, and Howie asks Brett to hook him up with Sam instead. Man, he really is stoned, if he thinks that Brett would go along with such a stupid plan. Of course, given how stupid the first 2 wishes were, Howie might be wise beyond his years. Oh, then Sam calls Brett, so Howie leaves.
While Brett parties with the popular kids, Howie gains access to the totem. He takes it to the party, then sits in his car and tries to figure out what to do with the thing. While getting high, of course. Howie wishes that he could be an action hero, then gets his ass kicked when he goes to a biker bar.
Later that night, Howie is in bed and hurting from the beating that he took. He staggers to the bathroom, then heads back to his room, where he sees that one of his windows is now open. As Howie starts to close it, a figure attacks him with a knife, and throws him to the floor. Lucky for him, it's just Brett, and the knife is a fake...
Brett demands the totem, and asks him if he wasted the last wish. Boy, talk about irony! Howie tells him that the wishes don't work for anyone else, and the 2 friends call a truce. Wow, that was resolved fast! It's like what a slasher movie would look like if made by Nickelodeon.
There's a fight between Eddie and Cody the next day, until the school staff pull them off of each other. After the incident, Cody decides to shower off, and the killer shows up to turn out the lights in the locker room. Cody looks for the culprit, and gets slammed in the head by a locker door, which knocks him out cold.
He wakes up on the golf course, and discovers that he has been placed in a hole feet-first, with only his head exposed. As Cody screams for help, the hooded killer approaches him with a bowling bag. The killer backs away in the fog, then Cody sees a red bowling ball rolling swiftly in his direction.
Cody manages to turn his head enough to miss making contact with the ball. He seems pretty happy, until he notices a second ball aimed straight at his face. We don't see the hit, but the crime scene team shows up the next morning to collect evidence from the aftermath. Sparky gets a good look at the damage, but we don't. Lame.
Sparky pays another visit to the M.E., and she tells him that she thinks that all of the victims were done in by the same person. Sparky reminds her that the first victim was killed with a sword, while Cody was bashed with a bowling ball, but she sticks to her guns. Hey, she is a medium, after all...Who better to ask?
Eddie is arrested as the prime suspect. At a press conference, Sparky reveals that Eddie had recent trouble with both victims, and that's their best idea regarding the motive. Oh Sparky, Sparky, Sparky...Eddie would do anything for love, but he wouldn't do that! You should sleep on it, baby, baby.
While on a dinner date, Brett asks Samantha what made her really break up with Cody. She tells him that Cody always mistreated her, and she finally grew tired of his attitude. When she gets up to use the restroom, Desiree(the girl from the dance many, many scenes ago) tells Brett that she alwaqys thought he was a cool person, until he started dating Sam.
Feeling guilty, Brett nearly tells Sam what he did to her with his wishes, but she convinces him that her feelings for him are genuine. She even goes so far as to suggest that she's actually the one taking advantage of him. Man, every guy should lead just a ridiculously charmed life!
After the restaurant closes for the night, Desiree walks home on the most deserted street ever. Some noises lead her to believe that someone is following her, and it rattles her confidence. She grabs some mace from her purse, and decides to start running home. She then hears another sound behind her. Desiree whips around to spray her stalker, but she's alone.
Just as she relaxes, a noose drops down and wraps around her throat, and Desiree is hoisted into the air on a traffic light pole. The killer wraps the end of the rope/wire to a heavy post, and then he watches Desiree until she stops struggling.
As he walks away, we see that Desiree was playing dead. She quickly grabs the cord, and pulls herself up toward the top of the traffic light, to get enough slack to remove the noose. Sadly, the killer hears her. He walks back to the light, grabs her foot, and yanks her down hard enough to snap her neck. Awww, why'd you have to kill her???
The mayor calls Sparky into his office the following day, and officially removes him from the investigation. He tells the detective that the case will now be handed over to the FBI, and that Eddie is no longer being held as a suspect. The mayor relents, though, and gives Sparky 1 week to solve the case. If he doesn't catch the killer in 7 days, he'll be fired. He sure is wishy-washy.
Sparky's partner then gets a message, that someone has actually confessed to all of the murders. Sparky questions the new suspect, a stringy-haired loon named Eugene. Eugene describes each crime scene in somewhat vague terms, and Sparky clearly has doubts about him. When asked if he's strong enough to do many of the things the killer did, Eugene responds by throwing one of the cops across the room.
At school, Brett is distracted by the feeling that other students are staring at him and Samantha. He tells Howie that he's decided to confess to her about the wishes he made. Howie suggests that he take her to a romantic location, then break the news to her. He mentions that his folks have a summer house, and Brett thanks Howie for letting him use the location. Unfortunately, a jock in the bathroom hears the plan, and he and his buddies decide to ambush the couple at the summer home.
The cops drag a local lake to search for evidence, and find the red bowling ball. They then make the new suspect match his fingers to the ball, but the holes are too small. Sparky gets so mad about being lied to, that he bonks the guy in the forehead with ball. The investigation continues.
At Howie's summer house, Brett remains true to his word. He tells Sam about the package, the totem inside, and the wishes. As she begins to realize that Brett may have been forcing himself into her life, she gets pretty upset and heads upstairs.
She locks herself into a bedroom, and ignores Brett when he begs her to talk to him. Outside, the 3 jocks arrive, and immediatly split up to check door and windows around the house. The third guy is left by himself, so he just sort of wanders around in the trees.
Howie calls Brett to see how the talk went, but the answering machine gets the message before Brett can, and Howie hangs up before they can talk. Then we see the killer cut the power to the house, and everything goes dark. Jinkies, Scoob!
The fat kid who was abandoned by his buddies gets nervous. He bends down to get something that he dropped, and the killer looms up behind him. Before the kid can stand up, he gets an axe in his back. I hate when that happens. That's why, when I drop something, it stays dropped.
Another jock finds his body, and the killer chases the second kid around. The teen gets into a car, but the killer smashes the windows to get to him. and kills him while he's trapped. Then Sam's ex finds Brett, and kicks his ass. Brett gets away, and tries to find Sam, to keep her safe, but she seems to have vanished. Wait, he can't be Sam's ex, because we saw Cody get bowled to death! Who the heck is this guy, then?
Then the killer breaks in, and stalks not-Cody, while Brett finds Sam hiding in the attic. They hear not-Cody let out a blood-curdling shout from the kitchen, and both sneak up to the attic to hide. The killer heads right to their location, where he takes some random stabs at them from the ceiling below.
When that has zero effect, the killer talks directly to Brett. Oh, and his voice is distorted to hide his identity. He tells the teen to come down and face him, or the killer will murder them both. Not wanting Sam to get hurt, Brett emerges from the attic.
The hallway looks empty, so Brett goes to the first floor. He finds the hooded figure standing in front of the fireplace, and they finally face each other. The killer removes his hood and scary mask, revealing himself to be...Mr. Turner?
Yup. He bought the totem for 10 bucks during a vacation, and used his first wish to kill his wife. His second wish was for money, and he now has a Swiss bank account with $10 million waiting for him. His final wish, for superhuman strength, was used to kill the students who slacked off in his classes.
Turner reveals that Sam is the last name on his list, and Brett tries to stop him. Since Turner has that strength, it proves impossible to hurt him, and Turner deflects the attack easily before going back up the stairs. Sam has no idea what's coming, so Turner has the upper hand.
When Turner pops his head through the opening, Sam knocks him back to the second floor by bashing him in the face. He passes out, but wakes up as she tries to escape. He abducts Sam, and ties her to a wall, where he throws knives, hatchets, and other implements all around her.
Brett snatches one of the flying weapons before it reaches Sam, and he reveals that his third wish was to be faster and stronger than Mr. Turner. As he explains it to Sam, the teacher escapes unseen. Not too observant, dumbasses.
Brett goes outside to find the killer, and his teacher tries to run him over. Then Turner disappears yet again, and pops up behind Brett to try and strangle him. Sam makes him release Brett by jumping on Turner's back and pummeling him with her amazing girl-hands that have no supernatural power whatsoever.. He merely pushes her away.
Then the 2 magically-strong men have a battle. Mr. Turner has his samurai sword, while Brett is holding a bulky statue, a stupid garden gnome. He deflects the blade several times, then slams the teacher in the face with the gnome, hard enough to knock Turner down.
Brett picks up the samurai sword, and tells Turner that shouldn't have murdered all those people. But before he can finish the teacher off, Turner springs at him yet again. While Turner has him pinned on the grass, Brett brings the sword down on the back of the killer's neck, sort of half-beheading him.
During the aftermath of the police investigation, Brett again tries to make amends to Sam for using and manipulating her. As they try to figure out how to fix everything between them, Sam suggests that Brett could give her the totem next, and let her decide how to make things right again. Oh, and the town holds a ceremony declaring that Brett is a hero. Hip hip, who cares?
As Sam and Brett talk about how good it feels for Sam to be making her own choices again, Brett asks her if she has made any wishes yet. She reveals that she has, indeed, used her first wish. As they discuss their plans for the summer, Sam also lets Brett know that she's taking his advice, and traveling around Europe. Her first destination is Greece.
As they walk back to their parents, Brett gets a graduation gift that shocks him: a tour of Europe, starting with Greece. As Brett realizes that it was Sam's wish, they grin at each other, then embrace. THE END
Well, despite the lack of gore, and the surplus of goofy humor, this one was fairly watchable. At least the body count was high. If the effects budget had been bigger(or indeed, had there been ANY effects budget), this would have kicked some ass with all of the zany murder methods. Oh well, maybe a sequel or remake someday....in the meantime, I give Wishcraft 3.5 killer trees out of 5.
And what did I get from watching Wishcraft?
-Well, wishes can get pretty bland.
Butt-chins turn girls on?
-ANGUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!(sorry, but that was a good movie...)
Next on my list is something called Chain Letter. Pass it on....and have a good week!