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John’s Horror Corner: The Hazing (2004)

January 18, 2012

MY CALL: This Night of the Demons rip-off is one of the best direct-to-DVD horror flicks I’ve seen!  The actors do surprisingly well, the scenarios are fun and the effects are decent.  This gets an “A+” as far as straight-to-DVD horror goes.  IF YOU LIKE THIS, WATCH: Night of the Demons (1988), Night of the Demons 2 (1994), and the recent remake Night of the Demons (2009), but maybe you should skip Night of the Demons 3 (1997).  Also, while demon free, Sorority Row (2009) has all the 80s campiness of these demon flicks but with an updated cast and a trucker-looking Carrie Fisher.  ALTERNATE TITLE:  Also released as Dead Scared, a much worse title.

The Hazing was everything that most theatrical horror releases SHOULD be nowadays—yet this movie somehow was overlooked as a solid Halloween release in 2004. What beat this movie out of a major release slot? Was it Seed of Chucky?!!? An “amusing” movie without a doubt, but far inferior to this little-known gem. It’s just upsetting.

Now I must admit: this is a “silly” horror movie. Think the Night of the Demons series (part 2, in particular), and make it a little yet MORE silly, sort of like Nightmare on Elm Street 4: Dream Warriors. But this movie is much more similar to the former, taking place in “Hack House”, a name strangely similar to the “Hell House”, “Hill House”, and “Hull House” of various other nearly identically-premised films. But you know what? I don’t care that it’s a serially violated and re-packaged premise because this time it paid off in full!

“Whoa, look, an evil-looking book”
“We should read from it!”

So a bunch of college kids are doing a scavenger hunt on Halloween.  They end up at Hack House and decide to have some fun.  Then weird things start happening as an evil force possesses them, one by one, using them as malevolent marionettes.  The flick features cheap seductions, humorous kills, good one-liners, and the most memorable oral sex scene ever.  As simple as it sounds, this movie was solid-gold awesome.

Gearing up to combat evil.

Most importantly, while this is a low budget flick, this went unnoticed after the first 20 minutes. The effects were tactfully simple but truly no less entertaining for it. The film quality, music and sound effects were in league with theatrical horror films (the ones that SHOULD actually be theatrical releases). The frequent humor was delivered with surprisingly good timing by little known, but unexpectedly good actors. Oh, and the pace of action was strong after the much slower character-developing start of the movie which, still, was rather entertaining. I enjoyed the characters a lot.  Parry Shen is nerdily charming, B-horror scream queen Tiffany Shepis holds her own, Brad Dourif is creepy without make-up, and then there was Nectar Rose.  This chick stole every scene!

A final note: nothing in this movie is scary, and if you jump it was due to unexpectedness and not actual fright. This is for those who love the style of horror of the movies referenced in this review.  This was made to elicit laughs rather than screams.

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  1. John’s Horror Corner: Grave Encounters (2011) « Movies, Films & Flix
  2. John’s Shamefully Bad Horror Corner: Dreamaniac (1986) « Movies, Films & Flix
  3. John’s Old School Horror Corner: The Nesting (1981) « Movies, Films & Flix
  4. John’s Horror Corner: Bleeders (1997) « Movies, Films & Flix
  5. John’s Horror Corner [INDEX] | Movies, Films & Flix
  6. John’s Horror Corner: Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 (2000) | Movies, Films & Flix
  7. John’s Horror Corner: Hatchet (2006), a brilliantly gore-slathered slasher spoof | Movies, Films & Flix
  8. John’s Horror Corner: Bad Milo (2013), hands down the best movie about an ass monster I’ve ever seen! | Movies, Films & Flix
  9. Sharknado 2: The Second One (2014), clearly the most creatively named sequel of all weather-induced shark attack movies OF ALL TIME! | Movies, Films & Flix
  10. 30 Days until Halloween! October Pick #1: Grave Encounters (2011) | Movies, Films & Flix
  11. John’s Horror Corner: Girlfriend from Hell (1989), an insufferably boring Devil uses sex to consume souls and drive us to prayer for a merciful death. | Movies, Films & Flix
  12. John’s Horror Corner: Night of the Demons (1988), a fun cheesy campy possessed Halloween night. | Movies, Films & Flix
  13. John’s Horror Corner: Night of the Demons 2 (1994), yet more boobs, more gore, more lipstick, and more fun cheesy demonic possession than part 1. | Movies, Films & Flix
  14. John’s Horror Corner: Cult of Chucky (2017), from the 1988 classic to the guilty pleasure sequels, I continue to enjoy this evil doll franchise! | Movies, Films & Flix
  15. John’s Horror Corner: Hatchet II (2010), an intestine-strangling, curb-stomping, head-smashing good time…after a devastatingly slow start. | Movies, Films & Flix
  16. John’s Horror Corner: Hatchet III (2013), Kane Hodder returns as Crowley in this AMAZING gore fest that bests the franchise in the dismemberment department. | Movies, Films & Flix
  17. John’s Horror Corner: Victor Crowley (2017), Kane Hodder returns for the gory Hatchet IV. | Movies, Films & Flix
  18. John’s Horror Corner: Curse of Chucky (2013), the sequel that makes up for Seed of Chucky | Movies, Films & Flix
  19. John’s Horror Corner: Dead Snow 2: Red vs Dead (2014; aka Død Snø 2), more innovative use of intestines, more chunky gross head-smashing and more Nazi zombie killing equal more slapstick hilarity. | Movies, Films & Flix
  20. John’s Horror Corner: Child’s Play (1988), the classic evil doll movie introducing us to Chucky and Brad Dourif’s menace! | Movies, Films & Flix
  21. John’s Horror Corner: Child’s Play 2 (1990), an inferior evil doll sequel that still manages to entertain, especially with its melty finale. | Movies, Films & Flix
  22. John’s Horror Corner: Child’s Play 3 (1991), Chucky goes to military school and breaks his Voodoo rules in this serviceable sequel. | Movies, Films & Flix
  23. John’s Horror Corner: There’s Nothing Out There (1991), the silly raunchy horror meta-movie that came before Scream (1996). | Movies, Films & Flix
  24. John’s Horror Corner: Black Sheep (2006), a goretastic New Zealand horror-comedy about killer sheep. | Movies, Films & Flix
  25. John’s Horror Corner: Decoys (2004), a Species-LITE (1997) knock-off playing on American Pie (1999) sex-comedy gags. | Movies, Films & Flix

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