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Film / Slaughter High

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When you name a school that, this sort of thing is to be expected.

There's Horror in the Halls... Lynching in the Lunchroom... Murder in Metal Shop.

Slaughter High is a British (despite how hard it tries to not look it) Slasher Movie released in 1986, and made by the people who brought you Pieces and Don't Open Till Christmas (and apparently Friday the 13th, or so they claim). It concerns the misadventures of bully target Marty Rantzen, a nerdy student at Doddsville High. A Deadly Prank ends up costing Marty his visage, and he is ultimately committed to a mental hospital due to the trauma.

Five years later, and after several unsuccessful attempts to fix his face, Marty escapes, and has a lethal class reunion at the now-closed high school.

The curriculum at Slaughter High includes:

  • Accidental Murder: Carol hears someone coming around the corner, and lashes out with an axe that she had in hand, accidentally killing Skip.
  • Acid Pool: Shirley's death. She melts to the bone in a bathtub filled with Hollywood Acid.
  • The Alleged Car: Skip's VW Beetle. When first seen it is backfiring heavily. He stops to pick up Nancy and—despite his boasting of the car's reliability—refuses to start again. It eventually arrives at the reunion being towed by Joe's pickup.
  • All Just a Dream: The film ends with a bandaged Marty waking up in a hospital bed, leaving it ambiguous as to whether any of the film really happened. Regardless, Marty kills a nurse, takes her uniform, jabs a doctor in the eye with a syringe, then rips his own scarred face apart.
  • April Fools' Plot: The events of the film take place on April 1.
  • Ash Face: The electrocuted Stella.
  • Asshole Victim: They all tortured and humiliated Marty so badly that it is hardly a surprise that he decided to respond in kind, especially after the burn of his face.
  • Ax-Crazy: Marty lures his old tormentors back to their old high school and kills them in a variety of brutal and sadistic ways.
  • Bandaged Face: The hospitalized Marty.
  • Barrier-Busting Blow: Marty punches through a window to get at Carol (but don't worry... he's wearing gloves).
  • Bathroom Stall Graffiti: Marty finds some in a shower stall that says "Marty Rantzen Sucks". He takes out a marker and changes the first "S" in "Sucks" into an "F".
  • Bathtub Scene: Though the water turns into acid, killing the bather.
  • Batter Up!: Carol bashes Marty with one a few times, then drops it and runs away, allowing Marty to pick it up.
  • Black Dude Dies First: The black caretaker Digby is the first person to fall victim to Marty's Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
  • Blatant Lies:
    Carol: You have done it before, haven't you?
    Marty: Who do you think you got here, some little virgin? Me, I'm a sex machine!
  • Blood from the Mouth: One of the hallucinatory zombies vomits a large amount of blood.
  • Blood Is Squicker in Water: A toilet randomly overflows with blood.
  • Bloody Handprint: Marty leaves one on a banner.
  • Bound and Gagged: Skip is bound and gagged when Marty leaves him to hang himself in the gym. Precariously balanced on a stack of tables, Skip's efforts to free himself are almost guaranteed to cause him to fall off and slowly strangle.
  • Bowdlerise: Releases in Australia and Hong Kong removed... well, almost everything.
  • Captain Obvious: The trivia track included in the Lionsgate DVD.
  • Carpet of Virility: Frank has a thick mat of chest hair which is seen when he and Stella have sex.
  • Catapult Nightmare: Suffered by Carol when she wakes from the nightmare of Marty trying to strangle her from the stretcher.
  • Cat Scare: The rat in Marty's old locker which causes Shirley to squeal when she opens it.
  • Chase Scene: There is a prolonged chase scene of the jester chasing Carol through the abandoned school, which was largely improvised when the producers realised the film was under-running.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The javelin. Skip takes it with with him when he goes hunting Marty. It is not seen again until the jester picks it from where Skip presumably left it in the gym, and tries to kill Carol with it. He drops it when Carol knocks him through the window. She grabs it and tosses it out next to his body. The jester then turns up when she is hiding in the shower and stabs her with it.
  • Closed Circle: After the characters enter the school, the killer seals all the exits: trapping them inside.
  • Cobweb Jungle: When the main characters enter the old school, they find the interior covered in cobwebs:
    "Cobwebs... you gotta be kidding."
  • Cool Mask: An old man mask with a jester hat.
  • Cool Sword: Carl's death.
  • Couldn't Find a Lighter: Marty lights the tainted joint off the Bunsen burner in the chemistry lab.
  • Couldn't Find a Pen: "April Fools!"...written in blood.
  • Covers Always Lie: This poster gives one the impression that the killer of the film is a supernatural skeleton dressed up as a teacher. The actual killer, however, is a teenage boy in a jester mask.
  • Creator Cameo:
    • Producer Dick Randall plays Carol's agent, Manny.
    • Co-writer/co-director Mark Ezra portrays Marty during the sequence where he chases Carol through the school, as Simon Scuddamore was unavailable.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death In order: impaled on a coat hook and nailed to a door; stomach exploded after consuming unknown chemical concoction; impaled with a sword; dissolved in acid; mutilated by lawnmower; electrocuted while having sex; drowned in a cesspit; axe to the head; javelin through the stomach; and hypodermic to the eye. The exact manner of death of Susan and the nurse are unclear, but strangulation seems likely.
  • Crusty Caretaker: Digby, who used to be the school janitor and is now the caretaker of the abandoned building, turns up to scare the reunion attendees, and then wanders to become the first victim of the jester.
  • Curiosity Killed the Cast: Skip gets captured when he investigates the noises by made by Marty's jester cap, and of course Carol and Nancy go looking for him.
  • Curtain Camouflage: Used by Skip and Frank for a prank on Carol and Nancy. Marty also enjoys hiding behind a poster of himself, and when Carol tries this in the auditorium, Marty just starts stabbing through the curtains.
  • Danger Takes a Backseat: Carl manages to break out of the booby-trapped school and makes it to Carol's car. However, while he is trying to start it, the jester stabs him with a sword through the driver's seat.
  • Deadly Prank: The gang’s tampering with Marty’s experiment inadvertently causes an explosion and his scarring by nitric acid.
  • Death by Irony: Electrocution, javelin jabbing, drowning, and (unintentional) burning that the cast is made to suffer are all related to the ways they bullied Marty.
  • The Dog Bites Back: Marty put up with being bullied and humiliated, but the disfigurement that his bullies caused was the final straw, with Marty deciding he’s had enough and killing his bullies at their 10-year reunion.
  • Evil Laugh: Marty does it only once, giving a very sinister laugh at the end after killing all of his bullies, but that doesn't stop it from appearing prominently in the film's score.
  • Evil vs. Evil: Marty is initially sympathetic, but he starts killing innocent people for no apparent reason, whereas his main targets are sadistic and nearly killed him.
  • Everything's Deader with Zombies: After killing everyone, Marty imagines them returning as ghouls.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": Nobody calls Coach anything but Coach, and he is listed as that in the credits.
  • Extremely Short Timespan: Excluding the prologue and epilogue, the film encompasses a little over 24 hours: running from when Carol gets up in the morning, until slightly after noon the following day (April 1st).
  • Eye Scream: A doctor gets a syringe in the eye, when Marty escapes from the hospital to enact his revenge for real.
  • Facial Horror: Marty's disfigurement, and him peeling off a chunk of his own face off in the end.
  • Fan Disservice: All nudity ends nightmarishly.
  • Future Loser: Played for laughs by Skip, the former star athlete. Despite ostensibly looking like a successful professional, he drives a Volkswagen Beetle that's prone to breaking down, and always changes the topic when it comes to his current job.
  • Gang of Bullies: The gang are all this. The first thing they're shown doing is pulling an extremely humiliating prank on Marty, before proceeding to trip him up, drag him over to a toilet, and give him a Swirlie.
  • Gilligan Cut: "All we have to do is stay awake, it'll be a cinch". Cue to everyone sleeping.
  • Javelin Thrower: A javelin appears as a weapon throughout, and is used by Marty to stab Carol to death.
  • Ominous Fog: A classroom fills with it, once Marty completely loses it.
  • Psychotic Smirk: The film ends on a shot of Marty's as he pulls a piece of his own face off.
  • Right Through the Wall: Stella and Frank having sex is heard and commented on by the surviving characters.
  • Road Apples:
    Joe: Oh, shit!
    Skip: What?!
    Joe: ... Dog shit.
  • Recut: The initial UK release was trimmed slightly.
  • Reunion Revenge: Marty lures his old bullies back to the derelict Doddsville High so he can kill them.
  • Revenge: Marty’s determined to make his bullies pay, for everything they did to him.
  • Revised Ending: The original ending for the film had the zombies of Marty's victims lunging at him before cutting to the credits, but the hospital coda was added on by another director.
  • Roses Are Red, Violets Are Blue...: The first part of the rhyme can be seen in Marty's yearbook, but the rest is obscured.
  • Self-Offense: Thinking she is the last survivor, Carol hears someone approaching on the other side of the curtain and assumes it is Marty coming to finish her off. She blindly swings a hatchet at the figure only to discover she has buried the axe in Skip's skull.
  • Shout-Out: Joe scares Stella with a hockey mask ("Who'd you think I was, Jason?") as we get a blaring sting from the Friday the 13th series (earliest parts of which were also scored by Harry Manfredini).
  • Significant Birthdate: April Fool's Day is Marty’s birthday and the date of his accident.
  • Stern Teacher: Coach, who punishes Marty's tormentors, but doesn't seem that sympathetic towards him.
  • Stuff Blowing Up: On the Title In, and when the chemistry lab goes up in flames along with Marty.
  • Swirlie: Poor Marty gets this as part of his initial torment at the start of the film..
  • Tampering with Food and Drink: Marty tampers with one of the beer cans, leading to Ted’s stomach-bursting death when he consumes it.
  • Teens Are Monsters: Nancy and her friends certainly were to Marty.
  • Tempting Fate: "It should be fun. Besides, what have we got to lose?"
  • Title In: 1 April. Fool.s Day.
  • Token Minority: Shirley (Asian) and Digby (black).
  • Too Dumb to Live: Please people, stop wandering off alone. Dammit Carol, quit dropping weapons, especially right next to Marty. And for the love of God, STOP MAKING OTHER SLASHER VICTIMS LOOK LIKE SMARTIES BY COMPARISON!
  • Trap Master: Marty who rigs the abandoned school with a variety of traps, including a bath that fills with acid and an electrified bed.
  • Two-Faced: Due to an accident involving a combination of acid and fire, Marty ends up like this. It gets worse at the very end, when he randomly rips off the scarred portion of his face.
  • Visual Pun: A poisoned can of beer causes some literal gut rot.
  • Who's Laughing Now?: After finishing off Carol, Marty proceeds to mock the gang for all the crap they put him through. then said gang attack Marty as hallucinatory zombies.
  • Window Pain: A brick gets thrown trough the gymnasium window, as a part of yet another elaborate prank on Marty.
  • World of Ham: Everyone seems to be acting like they're in a theatre production in their attempts to hide their British accents.
  • You Should Have Died Instead: "If you hadn't taken Marty into the showers, none of this would have happened! It's you two he's after, nobody else! Stella, Frank, Joe, none of them should have died, it should have been you two! You both should be dead!" Even though ALL of them were involved in the prank and disfigurement of Marty.
  • Zombie Gait: Done by Joe.