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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Urban Legend

It's difficult to remain a fan of slasher flicks in the post-Scream era, as most of the slashers now are pretty much self-aware parodies and/or remakes. So it's refreshing to watch a film like Urban Legend, where the story is mostly played straight, and the kills are somewhat creative. Sadly, the UL franchise and the IKWYDLS films have pretty much died off with sub-par sequels and direct-to-DVD cheapness, so it's a pretty good bet that we won't see a good one any time soon in either franchise. Anyway, on with the movie, and the pretty much non-stop SPOILERS...

Okay, so the films starts out with a pretty girl driving at night during a downpour. Her name is Michelle Mancini, though we won't find that out officially until a later on. Anyway, it's pouring out, she's driving, and there's a college radio program being hosted by Tara Reid, so I'm assuming it's about substance abuse...The radio station is at a school called Pendleton, where the majority of the movie takes place.

As Michelle listens to the radio program(it's a funny bit about a caller asking Tara Reid if it was wrong to replace her roommate's birth control pills with baby aspirin, lol), and Michelle turns around to fetch something in the back seat. Her car swerves into the wrong lane, and Michelle narrowly avoids becoming roadkill.

After she calms down, Michelle pops a cassette into the tape deck, and tries singing along to Bonnie Tyler's "Total Eclipse of the Heart". It's good that she's cute, because Michelle can't sing very well, or remember the lyrics. Let's hope that looks can get her far in least, until her looks fade.

As Michelle continues to mangle a classic ballad, she notices that her gas tank is nearly empty. Oh, and the rain picks up, right on cue. She finds a gas station and pulls in. You know how old this movie is? Gas is $1.14...THAT's how old this movie is! I don't care if there's a murderous psychopath somewhere in the plot, I want to live in this film's world.

The gas station attendant leaves his nice, warm store behind, and comes out to pump Michelle's gas. He's played by one of the genre greats, Brad Dourif, much to my delight. I wonder if he'll get to kill any rats or possess any dolls in this one?

He scares Michelle half to death, then asks her(with a terrible stutter, just like his character in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest) if she ran out of gas. No Numbnuts, she's there because she wants a booty call. While filling her tank, he glances into the backseat of her car, and looks pretty damned upset. He runs back into the gas station, disappears for a moment, then rushes back out again. He tells Michelle that the credit card company is on the phone, and that they want to talk to her.

Michelle puts on a jacket, then discreetly slips a can of mace into her pocket. When they get inside the gas station, the attendant locks the door, and Michelle discovers that there's nobody on the phone. The attendant pleads with her not to leave, but she thinks he's threatening her, so she maces him in the eyes, knocks out the glass in the door with the telephone, then jogs back to her car.

Gas Guy tries to grab her on the way out, but narrowly misses. Michelle accidentally sets off her car alarm, jumps into the front seat, and plows down the stutterer as she floors the gas pedal. As her car screeches away, Gas Guy finally manages to scream out, "SOMEONE'S IN THE BACK SEEEEAT!!!" Gosh, a classic urban legend....who'd a-thunk it?

As Michelle speeds off into the night, a hooded figure emerges from the backseat between flashes of lightning. She glances into her rearview mirror, just in time to see the killer raise an axe. She barely manages a gasp, then the axe presumably flies through(probably) her neck, and breaks through her side window. Cool way to begin the film, but it would have been nice to see the attack itself. I mean, I'm not exactly watching this for award-worthy dialogue, right?

So anyway, we move right along to Pendleton University, where most of the film takes place. There, we meet our main characters: First, there's Natalie, a ridiculously sexy redhead; Sasha, played by Tara Reid, and spends most of the film at the campus radio station; Brenda, Natalie's incredibly hot friend; Paul, a journalism major who puts reporting before anything else in his life; Parker, a sarcastic frat boy; and Damon, who has a reputation on campus for being a ladies' man.

Okay, so as we arrive at P.U.(hold your noses!), Sasha is talking to a caller at the radio station, a girl who thinks that she might be pregnant after oral sex. Yup, you read that right...let it sink in for a second. Ready? Oh, and for some reason, Sasha is using both a headset and a studio microphone to take calls. Maybe she likes the way the voices echo and bounce around in that cavernous space between her ears...

At an on-campus coffee shop, Parker, Natalie, and Brenda are listening to the radio program, when Paul walks in. They listen as Parker tells a story about a grisly killing spree that took place in one of the dorms. Stanley Hall, 25 years earlier. Apparently, the killer was a deranged professor who went door-to-door, hacking up anyone unfortunate enough to answer his knock. After allegedly killing an entire floor of students, the professor supposedly took the knife and stabbed himself in the chest.

What was the point of the story? Well, for some reason, Parker's fraternity holds an annual kegger to commemorate the anniversary of the massacre. Then Paul breaks into the chat to point out all of the flaws in the story. Killjoy. Annoyed by the interruption, Parker insists that the story is true, and that it was all covered up by the administration. Paul leaves, and Brenda reveals that she wants to ask Paul out.

After leaving the coffee shop, Brenda and Natalie decide to test out another urban legend, the one about Bloody Mary. Sure, why not...I mean, it's not like there haven't already been 14,000 Bloody Mary movies since this came out, right? (including the 3rd movie in this very franchise) They stand in front of the boarded-up door to Stanley Hall and say "Bloody Mary" 5 times. They hear a faint shout or scream. As they lean closer to listen for any ghosts, Damon(played by Joshua Jackson) pops up behind the girls to frighten them.

Back inside her own dorm building, Natalie gets scared a second time by the janitor, who she nearly collides with at the front entrance. Natalie rushes upstairs to her dorm room, only to get an eyeful of her Goth roommate having sex with her equally Goth boyfriend, Goth-darnit! After getting bitched out for intruding on Goth Sex 101, Natalie scurries over to her side of the room, puts on some headphones, and tries to get some sleep.

The next morning, Natalie and her friends attend a class on folklore being taught by Freddy Krueger, now going by the name Wexler. He introduces them to the concept of urban legends(Really? They need to be told what an urban legend is??), then tells them a classic example: A babysitter gets menacing phone calls, only to realize that the calls are coming from an upstairs phone. Brenda tells Professor Wexler that it actually happened in her hometown, and gets laughed at.

Wexler returns to his lecture, until Natalie and Brenda start giggling about something. Wexler asks Brenda to come to the front of the lecture hall, and tells her that he wants her to participate in an experiment. He hands her a package of Pop Rocks and asks her to eat a few. Then he hands her a can of soda, which she refuses to drink.

This leads into another urban legend: Mikey, the kid from the old Life cereal ads in the '80's, supposedly mixed Pop Rocks with Coke, and his stomach exploded. When the teacher shows the class a picture of Mikey as an adult, Damon steps forward to mix the candy and soda together. He downs an entire package of Pop Rocks, then takes a huge swig of the soda that the professor hands him. Awwww, Pacey's still alive!

As the professor continues with his lecture, Damon starts convulsing and gagging. He falls to the floor as everyone screams and panics, then goes limp. As the stunned classmates look on in horror, Damon eventually grins and stands back up. Damn.

After class, Brenda and Natalie see a gathering of students outside reading the school newspaper. Reese, a member of the security staff, is trying to confiscate the papers, with little success. On the front page is a story about Michelle Mancini, the girl who died in the opening scene. As Brenda reads the article out loud, Natalie looks stunned.

Then Paul shows up. He demands to know why Dean Adams and Reese are trying to keep students from reading the article, and the dean tells him that his article is untrue. Reese then adds that an article named Pendleton University the safest university in the country. Uh, not anymore, Reese. As Paul tries to obtain a quote from Brenda about her reaction to his article, Natalie tells him off. Then she and Brenda leave.

At the coffeehouse, Brenda, Natalie, Damon, Sasha and Parker discuss the murder. A television in the background shows a picture of the dead girl and the gas station attendant, because now he's also missing. When they discuss who she was, Sasha tells them that she heard that Michelle was listening to her radio show when she was murdered. Uhhhh, no she wasn't, she had turned it off to listen to Bonnie Tyler again. Hmmmm, did we just find our killer?

Nahhhhh, Tara Reid can't spell "homicide", much less commit it.

Now, where were we? Oh right, the scene ended, and now we're back in the dorm, watching Tosh and Natalie as Nat tries to be nice. When that fails, Tosh storms away. Alone at last, Natalie checks the phone for messages. A brief one from her mother reveals that Natalie DID know the girl who was murdered, and that they were best friends. Hmmmm...

After this big revelation, Natalie meets up with Damon. He offers her a shoulder to cry on, but talking is the LAST thing on his mind. In his car, the theme from Dawson's Creek comes blaring out of the speakers, as a sly reference to him playing Pacey on that show. Nice.

Once they get to a secluded area, Pacey--Uh, I mean Damon--pretends to care about Natalie's dead friend, even going so far as to hand her some bullshit about losing someone himself. When he starts showing her the fake tears, Natalie realizes how superficial Damon is. Before taking her back to the campus, Damon gets out of the car to pee.

While Natalie checks herself out in the mirror, Damon gets attacked from behind. The killer wraps a rope around Damon's throat. Natalie gets tired of waiting, so she steps out of the car, and comes face-to-hood with the killer. Screaming, Nat rushes back to the car, locks all of the doors, and watches the killer move around to the back of the vehicle, where he ties the other end of the rope he used on Damon.

Natalie doesn't know that, of course, so she keeps trying to get the vehicle started, even when the killer tries to stab her through the roof. From above, Damon is seen struggling to free himself from the deadly noose, but Natalie doesn't hear him begging her not to start the car. His shoe flying at the windshield startles Natalie, and she puts the pedal to the metal, sending Damon flying into the treetops. The killer darts into her path, so Natalie tries to kill him, then makes the car go in reverse. The lack of tension on the rope sends Damon plummeting back down, where he smacks into the hood. Bye, Pacey!

Natalie drives back to campus, where she finds Reese watching an old blaxploitation flick. Reese and Natalie hurry back to the clearing, but Damon has vanished. Reese accuses Natalie of being high, then informs her that the gas station attendant was arrested before Damon was allegedly killed. Yikes! Or, as the gas station guy would say, "Y-y-y-y-y-y-y-y-y-y-y-ikes!"

Back in their usual hangout,Brenda, Sasha and Parker chalk up Natalie's story as a prank Damon was pulling. Then Parker realizes that the manner of Damon's death was a recreation of an urban legend. At the same time, Natalie realizes that Michelle's murder was also similar to an urban legend. Parker tells her to call Killington, the ski resort Damon was going to for the weekend, which she does. The receptionist at the resort remembers a blond guy checking in, but can't verify that it was actually Damon.

Natalie takes a walk, and decides to stop by the school library to research more urban legends, and literally bumps into Sasha, who decided to grab a copy of the Kamasutra. Together, they start reading through the urban legends book and find several familiar stories: there's the story of the person who came home late at night, unaware that there was a killer in the house murdering family members in the dark; the legend that was recreated for Damon's murder; the legend of the gang member deciding to kill the teenagers who flashed their headlights at get the idea.

Back at the dorm, Tosh is chatting online, trying to find a sex partner. The killer replies with an instant message, and they start flirting online. As Tosh leaves the room to get ready for her "date", the killer tells her in the IM that he's already in her room. When she sees the response, he throws her onto the bed, and begins to suffocate Tosh to death. Natalie enters the room, hears the muffled cries, and assumes that Tosh is just having sex, so she leaves the light off. After Tosh is killed, the murderer passes by Natalie's bed, and leaves a message in blood that mimics the urban legend she learned about from the book: AREN'T YOU GLAD YOU DIDN'T TURN ON THE LIGHT? She calls 911, and is questioned by both the dean and Reese. Nearby, Brenda and Paul watch as the dean asks Natalie about the incident. Both the dean and Reese try to convince her that Tosh committed suicide, but Nat doesn't buy it.

Paul waits until Natalie is alone, then tells her that he knows that she and Michelle were friends in high school. Natalie tells him that she thinks a killer is on the loose, and he replies that they should sit down somewhere else and talk about what's happening on the campus. They head to the newspaper office, where Natalie shares her theory that someone is using urban legends to murder people. Paul is skeptical, and asks her to give him a reasonable explanation as to why the killer is striking now. Natalie thinks it might have something to do with the massacre at Stanley Hall, since a party is being held on the 25th anniversary of the supposed incident.

To prove Nat wrong, Paul takes her to the newspaper "morgue", where they find the school files from 1973 are missing. The creepy janitor pops up again, and tells them to start by questioning Professor Wexler. Instead of questioning the teacher, they break into his office. As they go through every drawer, shelf and bookcase, Natalie nearly jumps out of her skin when she finds a jacket similar to the one worn by the killer. (on a side-note, pause the movie as the camera pans around the can clearly see a Freddy Krueger doll among Wexler's items in the room...) Oh, and there's also a shiny new ax in the room as well. I used to polish my ax every day, until I needed glasses...

Natalie calls Paul over, and shows him the items she found. Before they can discuss their next move, Wexler returns and enters the office, leaving the couple trapped in the hidden room. As they listen to him leave, Paul and Natalie try to escape, only to find Wexler waiting for them.

Wexler takes them to the dean, who bitches them both out in front of him and Reese. Paul tries to tell the dean about the ax,but Wexler explains that he uses it as a prop in his urban legend class. When Paul asks Wexler directly about the massacre in Stanley Hall, the dean asks Reese and the professor to leave, so that he can speak to them in private.

Once he's alone with Paul and Natalie, the dean drops a bombshell on them: he discovered that Natalie had a criminal record. He then informs Paul that he no longer works for the school newspaper, then kicks them both out of his office. Outside, Paul demands that Natalie tell him the truth about her "record", and why she was put on probation. She remains silent, and Paul tells her that he doesn't trust her anymore, before walking away.

Natalie heads to the gym, and finds herself watching someone swimming in the pool. As Natalie continues to observe, she sees a figure dressed like the killer approach the swimmer. She screams and uses a chair to break the observation window, only to discover that Brenda was the one swimming, and some anonymous chick was in the jacket, getting ready to swim as well.

In the locker room, Natalie tells Brenda that she knew Michelle, but that they hadn't spoken in 2 years. She then decides to tell Brenda the whole story of the incident in her past. See, she and Michelle were out in Nat's car one night, when Michelle decided to try out the "high beams" initiation urban legend for herself. She waited for a car to come along and flash the headlights at them, then she began to chase the other driver. The other driver freaked out and crashed by the side of the road, which killed him. The court decided that their role in the accident wasn't enough proof to charge them, so Nat and Michelle were given probation instead.

Natalie tells Brenda that, even though she wasn't driving, she stills feels responsible for the man's death. Brenda, seeing how fragile Natalie is, invites her to the party that night at Stanley Hall. Gee, a party celebrating a killing spree....sounds safe to me!

Later that night, as Paul is clearing out his desk at the newspaper office, he comes across a newspaper article about the legendary massacre at Stanley Hall. Not only is the story true, but it turns out that the sole survivor was none other than Professor Wexler, back when he was just Student Wexler. Oh, and apparently the janitor knows more about it, because he lingers in the doorway to watch Paul as he reads the article. Hmmm...

Dean Adams is then seen getting ready to go home as well. He pauses at the car door to look into the back seat, then smiles at how much the urban legends have started to get on his nerves. A hand grabs his shoulder, but it turns out to be Reese. She starts to list all of the students who have either died or gone missing, and the dean tells her not to worry or call the police. Weird.

After Reese leaves, Dean Adams is attacked by the killer, who was hiding under the car the entire time. The dean falls to the ground, sees how much blood is pouring out of his achilles heel, and tries to crawl to safety. The killer opens the car door, releases the brake, and starts to roll the car toward Dean Adams, who makes the mistake of turning around to look. The car hits him right at the exit, knocking him into the spikes that they always tell you not to back up over, and he gets both impaled and run over.

At the massacre party, the frat boys are trying to get the dog drunk. A geeky guy tells Sasha that the sound of someone screaming in the song "Roller Coaster of Love" is the actual scream of someone being murdered. Sasha quickly finds somewhere else to be. Paul finds Natalie and shows her the newspaper article about Wexler's part in the Stanley Hall Massacre. Paul promises Natalie that he will protect her and they kiss, just as Brenda returns. She accuses Natalie of trying to steal Paul from her, then stomps away to go find somewhere to cry.

Reese patrols the halls of the deserted college at night, and the janitor nearly scares her shitless. She yells at him, but he just keeps walking like he didn't hear her. After Reese starts to calm down, she hears something break in one of the offices and decides to investigate. She finds the office(I think it's Wexler's) trashed, and she starts sweeping the room with the beam of her flashlight. She slips on the floor, and we discover that the floor was slippery because it was covered in blood.

Back at the party, Paul finds Parker and tells him that the party should end early. Parker responds by turning off the music and telling the party-goers that he believes that Paul is the killer, using the murders to help him get a career in journalism. He tells Paul to leave, then Sasha calls Parker a jerk.

Immediately following the confrontation, Parker gets a phone call from the killer. Parker sees that the call is coming from Damon's phone, and he decides to taunt the caller by mocking he urban legends a bit. He tells the killer that he knows the one about the babysitter getting scary calls from inside the house, while going from room to room to find the guy. The killer then responds that he has the wrong legend in mind: the one being recreated is the legend abou the old lady who dried off her pet by putting it in the microwave. Ewwwww!

Parker rushes back downstairs, just as the microwave beeps. Sure enough, he finds the dog inside...or the dog's insides at least. Parker runs upstairs to puke into the toilet, and the killer grabs his hair, plunging Parker's head into the toilet. He doesn't drown Parker, though. No, instead Parker wakes up and finds himself tied to the toilet. The killer shoves a funnel into Parker's mouth, then pours drain cleaner down his throat.

Reese calls the police, but they just put her on hold. At the same time, Natalie tries to call Paul, but his voicemail picks up. To complete the trifecta of phone scenes, Sasha is back at the radio station, making fun of students calling her about dumb sex stuff. Sasha doesn't realize it, but her producer is murdered while she's taking the call. She approaches his booth, and when lightning strikes, sees the killer swinging an axe at the window.

Natalie hears her scream on the radio, and rushes over to the stereo equipment, to turn down the music. Sasha rushes out of the radio booth and down the hall, and somehow the killer gets ahead of her, barely missing chopping her face in half. Natalie gets frustrated when her cdall to campus security gets a busy signal, so she decides to try to save Sasha herself.

Sasha gets relatively close to the exit, blocked only by numerous stairs. She makes a run for it, and the killer grabs and tries to fling her over the stairs. Sasha grabs the railing before she falls, so the killer retrieves his axe. As he prepares to chop off her fingers, Sasha lets go, and falls pretty far. Gee, that must have smarted.

Sasha limps toward an elevator, and the killer follows. the doors shut before he can kill her, and Sasha rides it to the 3rd floor. She limps down a dark hallway, while Natalie hurries to get to the building. Reese also hears Sasha screaming on the radio, and decides to check it out for herself.

Just as Natalie gets inside the building, Sasha sees her and bangs on a window to get her attention. Ther killer also finds Sasha, and corners her, while Natalie can only watch. The killer swings the axe several times at Sasha, though we don't get to see any part of her death. When he's done, he looks through the window at Natalie and waves.

Natalie runs back outside, and makes her way to Paul's room. She tells him about Sasha, and Paul scolds her about leaving the party. That makes Natalie a little suspicious, and she asks him where he's been all night. Paul tells her that he's been trying to find help, but that the dean and Reese have gone missing. He picks up a phone and tells Natalie that the line is dead, but she decides to check it for herself, which pisses him off.

Back in the rain, Paul and Natalie run into Brenda. She heard what happened on the radio show, and decided to seek help, much like they did. As the three of them take off, Reese stumbles upon sasha's corpse, which we still don't get to see. Reese tries to call the dean, but gets no response...duh!

As Natalie, Brenda and Paul drive away from the campus, Natalie declares that she smells something strange. Paul pulls over at a nearby gas station to see if the phones work, and leaves the girls in the car. While he's gone, Brenda apologizes to Natalie for getting jealous earlier, and they decide to find the source of the weird smell, which is getting stronger. They open up the trunk, and find Wexler's corpse there, covered in blood. They both make eye contact with Paul, and take off running.

He chases them into the woods, where Natalie and Brenda somehow get split up. When Natalie realizes that Brenda is no longer with her, she stops running and hears her screaming somewhere in the distance. Natalie hears Paul getting closer, and manages to flag down a pickup truck, which happens to be driven by the creepy janitor. Despite her unease around the guy, Natalie accepts a ride from him.

The janitor asks if Natalie is okay, and offers her his jacket. When she turns around to fetch it, she sees that it's the same style of jacket that the killer wears. Geez, this is the 3rd or 4th character in this thing that wears that jacket! Was there a sale or something at Burlington Coat Factory???

Natalie starts getting scared, and asks the janitor to let her out of the truck. The door won't open from the inside(???), and Natalie's demeanor starts to annoy him. At that point a car comes from the other direction with its headlights off, so the janitor flashes his on and off at the driver. D'oh! Just like the urban legend, the other driver swerves and starts to chase them. As Natalie urges the janitor to accelerate, the other car pulls up beside them, and both get a good look at the killer's hooded jacket, but no details of his face.

Up ahead, there's a curve in the road, and the killer rams into their vehicle. The impact sends the pickup sailing through the guardrail, and the truck comes to a stop after sailing a short distance. Natalie sees the janitor slumped over the steering wheel with blood on his face, so she rolls down her window and opens the outside handle to escape. She starts running again, as the rain picks up.

Reese gets back to her office, and retrieves a pretty nice handgun she keeps locked away for special occasions. She looks at a movie poster of her favorite female blaxploitation star, and shoves a clip into the gun. Go ahead, make her day!

Natalie gets back to the campus, and finds an emergency phone. As she keeps hitting the speaker and calling for help, Natalie hears Brenda screaming somewhere near her location. She sees a light on at the abandoned Stanley Hall, hears more screaming, and decides to see if she can help. Oh, so it's okay to take the time to investigate some anonymous screamer, but you can't be bothered to try to rescue the guy whose pickup you caused to crash? I'm stating to think that maybe Natalie deserves to die at the killer's hands.

Natalie manages to loosen some of the boards over a window, and she climbs in. The screams get louder as she makes her way to the stairs, and Natalie creeps into a bedroom. The door shuts behind her and jams, so she tries other doors in the room. One reveals the corpse of Parker, covered in blood and something foamy(??)-looking. Stepping away from Parker's body, Natalie collides with the corpse of Dean Adams, and she screams upon seeing him. Opening another door finds her face-to-face with Damon, who is still swinging by a noose, but also has deep gouges across his face.

Natalie finally gets through the right door, and finds herself in a room filled with candles. There she sees Brenda on a bed, laid out in a ritualistic pose. Natalie sits on the edge of the bed and starts to cry, and Brenda sits up. Before Natalie can react, Brenda punches her in the head, then smiles.

When Natalie comes to her senses, she has duct tape over her mouth. Brenda taunts her, then yanks the tape off so that Natalie can respond. Natalie calls her crazy, then asks Brenda why she murdered so many people. Brenda shows Natalie a slideshow, and explains her mad plan. *cue Scooby-Doo music*

Remember the guy who Natalie and Michelle ran off the road? Well, Natalie doesn't, not at first. It turns out that the guy was Brenda's boyfriend in high school. Brenda tells her that she and the boyfriend were going to get married right after they graduated, and Brenda swore vengeance after the car wreck.

When Brenda realized that the death was the result of an urban legend, she decided to kill Natalie and her friends with re-enactments of those very legends. Now, I have to stop here to rant a little bit. Doesn't it just seem a little out of whack? I mean,yes Natalie was in the car, but Michelle was the driver, right? Wouldn't the story have made more sense if Brenda had saved Michelle for last instead of Natalie? And why kill all of the others on campus? None of them had any ties to the incident in any way. Seriously, is it just me, or is Brenda's plan filled with more holes than a chunk of Swiss cheese?

Anyway, Brenda decided to save Natalie for the urban legend about a person waking up in a tub of ice with their kidney missing. She grabs a scalpel, explains the legend to Natalie, and cackles with glee.

Thbe movie switches over to Reese, who is rushing through the campus, trying to piece the whole mystery together. She sees the light on at Stanley Hall, and decides to investigate further. While we wait for Reese to catch up to the killer, Brenda explains the rest of her kooky plan. She murdered Wexler so that she could frame him for the killings. Natalie begs for her life, but Brenda tells her that soon she and her dead friends will all be legendary. Urban Legend...ary.

Natalie tries to bite Brenda, but Brenda manages to tape her mouth shut again, then stabs her in the side. Natalie cries out in pain, and Reese enters the room with her gun drawn before Brenda can do any more damage to Natalie. Reese unties one of Natalie's hands, then forces Brenda to stand against a window. Before she can finish frisking the killer, Brenda turns around and stabs Reese too. The two women struggle with each other, then Brenda gets the gun and shoots Reese.

By this time Natalie has freed herself, but Brenda points the gun at her too. When Natalie tells her that the murders won't bring back Brenda's fiance, Brenda responds that she plans to woo Paul after Natalie is gone. Then Paul shows up, and displays his sarcastic clapping skills. He tries to convince Brenda that he wants Natalie dead too, for getting him expelled. Paul tells Brenda that he'll need to get the details of each murder from her, for his article, then he asks for the gun.

Brenda isn't as crazy-dumb as she looks though. She points the gun at Paul, forces him to stand next to Natalie, then does an eenie-meanie-minie-moe to decide which one will get shot first. Before she can pull the trigger, Reese pops up again and stabs her in the arm. Natalie gets the gun, and Brenda taunts her so she shoots Brenda, who crashes through a window. This movie has a serious window fetish.

After making sure that Reese is still alive, Natalie and Paul leave to get help. In the car, Paul tells Natalie that he called paramedics to rescue Reese. Natalie then waxes philosophical, telling Paul that what happened will become an urban legend too, and will change as each new person tells the story. As Paul asks what the plot twist will be at the end of the urban legend, Brenda pops up in the back seat, holding onto her ax. Paul glimpses her in the rearview mirror, and the car swerves all over the slick road as they try to avoid Brenda's attacks.

The car gets to a bridge, and Paul tries careening from side to side, to make Brenda miss her swings with the weapon. He slams on the brakes, and Brenda goes flying through the windshield. See? Another window! She sails over the bridge and plunges into the water, where she presumably dies.

Paul checks Nataliefor any injuries, and they both get out of the car to see if Brenda survived or not. They see her lifeless corpse floating away on the water, and the scene fades out, as a narrator describes how the storm washed the body down the river, never to be seen again.

Huh? So the whole movie was an urban legend too? Was any of it real? I guess not, becauswe the college students hearing the tale laugh it off, even when the guy telling it insists that it really happened. One girl even makes a joke that Brenda was actually a chick in a Noxema commercial, which is an inside joke about the actress playing Brenda, who really was in a series of those commercials years ago.

As the storyteller asks if anyone believes him, one girl says that she does. It's Brenda, with a different hairstyle, and she tells the group that he didn't tell it right. Brenda leans forward, and promises to tell them the "real" story. THE END

Pretty good, especially in the post-Scream era of self-aware hipsters who sarcastically deconstruct the movies they star in. I still think the story would have made more sense if he Natalie and Michelle characters had switched roles, but most of the kills were creatively staged and fun. Oh, and many of the kills needed to be
SHOWN...otherwise, what's the point? Urban Legends gets 3 and 3-quarter killer trees out of five from me. Oh, and this week I learned:

-That I have a serious fetish for redheads...but not nearly as bad as the fetish this film's creators had for windows.
-Sex and murder sound pretty much the same on the radio.
-After a massacre occurs, it's common practice to leave the site of the murders standing, but boarded up.

I'm only partially moved into my new apartment, but I don't anticipate any more delays that wouldd prevent me from watching these things. Keeping that in mind, my next film is Final Destination, which is a goofy, fun movie that doesn't skimp on the violence in the least. Oh, and I just bought a brand-spankin'-new DVD/Blu-Ray player, which I'm looking forward to breaking in, so if any of you have any suggestions for a good slasher flick to watch on BR, let me know in the Suggestion Box post. See you next week!