This 1991 low-budget cult classic film keeps its tongue firmly in cheek as it invokes cliché after cliché of horror films and cop procedurals.
This film provides examples of:
- And I Must Scream: Grace's revenge involves forcing her chosen victims to rapidly dissolve with their soul ostensibly suffering for eternity in the afterlife.
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: A visual example. When Deedee is walking through the hotel corridor, she passes by a man in an executioner's hood, a man hugging a blowup doll, and a Hasidic Jew.
- Artistic License Geography: No, Pittsburgh does not have an Egypt District.
- Ate His Gun: Joe apparently takes his vodka this way with a realistic watergun. Leads to a slight misunderstanding between him and Deedee.
- Big Bad: Grace Cairo is the mastermind behind the murders.
- Brick Joke: Seemingly, Erma's attempt to quit smoking is a Big Lipped Alligator Moment, with her being shown films of smokers enjoying their habit before enduring horrible disasters and aversion therapy involving fire-hose wielding men in gorilla suits, scientists with shock prods, and a muscular black man punching her when she tries to light up. Averted when the combination of injuries results in her successfully fooling both Grace and Lober into thinking that she's Anubis.
- Chekhov's Skill: A minor one. Erma never could have run up and down those stairs so readily had she not been constantly exercising on the StairMaster in most of her scenes.
- Cute Clumsy Girl: Grace, when on roller-skates. Averted after she's shown to be the killer...
- Da Chief: Sweeney and Blocker's police chief constantly threatens to kill them if they don't solve the case soon.
- Gory Deadly Overkill Title of Fatal Death: The film's title is an obvious parody of the trope.
- Groin Attack: Used by Sweeney and Blocker on the Chief and his crony to escape to solve the murder. Blocker kicks the chief in the fork, considers for a second, then drives another one home. Sweeney delivers three kicks in rapid succession.
- Improvised Weapon: The killer seems to have a power tool fetish, carting along a portable generator to power them. The weapons used in order:
- Left the Background Music On: At the first crime scene, dramatic music is playing as the detectives view the bodies and soon they turn and tell someone to turn it off. Cue the cop going to a car with a large speaker on top and switching off the music.
- Prophecies Rhyme All the Time: The hieroglyphs found inside the victims rhyme when translated to English.
- The Walls Are Closing In: Grace tries to kill Deedee by throwing her into a trash compactor.