Return to Sleepaway Camp
by Evan ODell 3/3/09
(2006) Written, directed and produced by Robert Hiltzik. Starring Vincent Pastore, Paul DeAngelo, Isaac Hayes, Jonathan Tiersten, Michael Gibney, and Felissa Rose.
Sleepaway Camp was a minor horror hit in the eighties. The end reveal was something that stuck with horror fans who saw the original. This is the first official sequel to Sleepaway Camp which has had two feature length sequels and a short fan-made sequel which was only available on the recalled original Sleepaway Camp boxset. This one sees the return of the writer/director of the original. He also has yet another sequel on the way. This one features the return of the actors that portrayed counselor Ronnie (Paul DeAngelo) and siblings Ricky (Jonathan Tiersten) and Angela (Felissa Rose) from the original.
The production value and level of gore are a close match to the original. Though the first death is considerably frustrating, not only because it is a recycle of a similar death from the original but also because it makes use of some downright horrible CGI to try to sell the effect. The other deaths are carried off far better than the first one. But perhaps the most frustrating thing about the new Sleepaway Camp is that they broadcast who Angela is from the first time you see the character on screen, some three minutes into the movie.
I enjoyed the original, but I'm sorry that I'm just not emotionally invested enough in these characters to care for the sequel. Its just not very good. Seeing Isaac Hayes in one of his last roles is a small concession. The annoying fat kid at the center of this story is just far too unlikeable to care about. What with the horrible reveal this time around, there is just nothing to recommend this movie for. You've been warned!
Frank (Vincent Pastore) and Ronnie (Paul DeAngelo) open a new summer camp. This time it's called camp Manabe (a rearrangement of Be-a-Man, gee how clever) instead of Camp Arawak. Ronnie is soon reminded of Angela's killings from the original when the cook dies. Frank thinks its only a coincidence, but Ronnie suspects otherwise. Everyone who messes with the socially awkward fat kid, who is a giant bully that plays the victim card only to turn the tables, seems to end up dead. Throw in a couple red herrings, and then its only a matter of time before the awkward reveal I saw coming from three minutes in.