Director: J.S. Cardone
Starring: Sarah Kendall, Frederick Flynn, Carol Kottenbrook, Alan McRae, Michael Holmes
Is it a nightmare? Or is it…
Two couples set out for a romantic vacation on a deserted island. Kay, played by Sarah Kendall, is a frustrated painter who are going through a rough time in her life because of haunting nightmares, which is also affecting her work. With her on this trip is her husband David, her brother Eric and sister-in-law Brooke. Soon after they arrive Kat starts to get a sense of deja-vu and she is sure that someone else is on the island with them, but fails to convince the others that danger might be close…
When you start up a Video Nasty movie with that title you would expect to see a vicious slasher movie where lots of teens get killed off in all kinds of bloody ways. This however isn’t quite like that. It’s got element from the slasher era it was made in mixed with some dark visuals, old school horror music and low body count.
What’s interesting here is that the murders only occur when Kay is asleep. Doesn’t that sound a bit familiar? It’s made before A Nightmare on Elm Street so that’s a fun little trivia about this movie. Even though it has that similarity, there’s nothing else in it that would suggest that Wes Craven was influenced by it. The killer is never explored or explained in any way like the Freddy character is and the entire tone of this one is very different from Nightmare on Elm Street.
The Slayer is slow paced and you have to be patient if you are gonna enjoy the film. It was directed by J.S. Cardone and he is mostly writing screenplays these days (The Covenant, Prom Night remake, The Stepfather remake) and I think he did a decent job with this one. There are some scenes that has good atmosphere and the killing scenes are done quite well. The acting however goes from stiff to good depending on which scene you’re in. I did not care much for Sarah Kendall’s character, she wasn’t a very good lead in this movie and she didn’t do any other movies after this (except if you count the part as a stewardess in Karate Kid 2).
The Slayer is a decent 80’s horror movie. It’s problem is that it’s not very gory for the gore fans, doesn’t have a lot of death scenesfor the slasher fans, doesn’t explore the dream aspect for those interested in something new. It ends in the middle of several subgenre’s of horror without prevailing in any of them.