Mandy Lane (Amanda Heard) is:
- / hot,
- / unattainable,
- / sensible and
- / reasonably innocent.
All the guys (including me) see the first point, see the second as a challenge, ignore (3) and hope (4) provides the opportunity to ‘slip one past the keeper’.
But this isn’t a ‘She’s the man’ or even a ‘She’s out of my league’ (under-appreciated) clone. It’s a ‘teens get slaughtered’ flick. 90% of a boring one with a mild twist that adds 10%.
Mandy Lane goes to some unnamed random US school with scads of pretty, obnoxious teens – even her so-called skanky classmates are hot – even though they label each other ‘fat’ and ‘ugly’ when they are SOOOO NOT! (as they might say). Let’s just say that of the three chicks that end up in the last ¾ of the film there are two 8.5s and a 9.
After ‘shedding’ her platonic male best bud after he causes an unsavoury incident at a house party Mandy seems at a loose end and vulnerable. She agrees to go away for the weekend to a farmhouse (they call it a ranch – I didn’t see a single cow) with 5 other stereotypically reprehensible teens: three guys / three gals including Mandy. A weekend that from the outset is full of sleazy talk, drugs, booze, petty crime and heavy petting. They are all sluts and dicks, but also at the fairly opulent ‘ranch’ is a ‘ranch-hand’ named Garth. A handsome dude who seems noble, principled and sensible… he is an ex-soldier after all. SIGH.
Once at the ranch the dudes all work their spiel at Mandy and take shots at climbing Everest, then when that fails they move onto the nearest silicon enhanced K2.
Then some of the weekenders start dropping off.
Once the serial killer flick starts any semblance of creativity or originality evaporates. Can I only say that 1 kill assumes that a drunk moron teen somehow takes a car and a gun in the middle of the night and heads to the nearest lake for a swim… That sound plausible to you?
The film is pretty lamentable and filled with ‘wha?’ moments. It is also unashamedly pervy, the variations of ‘awkward angles aimed at young pretty teens rude bits’ is insane. If I was a 17 year old hormone-fuelled lad (instead of a mid-30s one) I might bump my rating up a couple notches. I hated the various teens – even the hot ones. Shit, even the one that flashed her jubblies – there is the stoner-looking rich kid, the almost likable black guy, the self-obsessed pretty boy, the ‘sorta looks like the chick who sent nude photos to Zack Ephron’ exotic girl and the ‘hot white chick who doubts her own hotness’.
The only tension and mystery is ‘Who-dunnit?’, and it ain’t much of a surprise when that is revealed, nor is it done creatively.
BUT. If you have actually seen the film and/or are willing to take a spoiler I have a solution to that which would elevate this dud to at least ‘worthwhile’ status.
Final Rating – 6 / 10. BUT. They didn’t do execute my awesome idea below, what remains is a dud masquerading as a teen-flesh flick pretending to be a slasher film.
OK, once it is finally revealed that Mandy was in on the gig they just leave it at that? Rest on their laurels?
Couldn’t they have tried something to allude to the fact that we the audience shouldn’t have spotted it or guessed?
Now, here is how that could have been done easily. In the opening minutes when the rich blonde dick takes a fall off the roof they could have shown a flashback near the end which shows Mandy gesturing to annoying platonic BFF (subtly) to “Push him off!” – they could even use a zoom-flashback.
Secondly – when exotic reasonably hot (8.5?) – chickie cops it in the barn, and Mandy goes outside to see where she it, couldn’t they have somehow worked in that she indeed found said hottie, but also twisted the knife and finished her off?
How hard would that have been? Would it really be a major pain adding 5 minutes to an 80 minute flick if it adds a solid point to the score?
Ahhhhh forget it. If they are that lazy that they don’t think of a pretty obvious flaw that a fat guy on the other side of the planet sees plain and clear, assuming the ‘teens in their undies’ will do enough to ensure viewers don’t care; why should I bother?