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Review by
Kelly Parks

Urban Legend
URBAN LEGEND
Sony Pictures

Ratings: USA: R

URBAN LEGEND is the kind of film that was made fun of by SCREAM. As formula as can be imagined, and if you haven't figured out who "the killer" is well before the end, it's time for you to sterilize yourself to prevent your defective genes from reducing humanity's average IQ.

The new group of doomed teens die in mildly inventive ways, but every moment is predictable to the point of boredom. Female characters that show any hint of sexual aggressiveness are quickly hacked to pieces, while the central character heroine survives as a reward for her virtuous nature. And the so-called "twist" at the end is exactly what you think it will be, stolen from mediocre scripts of the past in a long tradition of plagerism.

Nudity? None! The one thing that can make you feel it wasn't a complete waste of time is sadly missed.

The basic idea is mildly interesting, playing on the stories people tell of some terrible event that really happened to a friend of a friend of their old roommate's cousin. But they only do a few of the legends*, and completely miss the creepier ones. Where's the girl who reaches under her bed for her dog to lick her hand before she goes to sleep, only to be discovered dead and dismembered, next to a bloody note that reads, "Humans can lick hands, too"?

Robert Englund (DEAD & BURIED, NIGHTMARE ON ELMSTREET, WISHMASTER, STRANGELAND) has a small, forgettable role, undoubtably because a mortgage payment was due. He's truly wasted in this film, his talent for genuine scary characters not even tapped.

Bills for your wasted time should be sent to director Jamie Blanks and writer Silvo Horta.*

And now, the rating: One Shriek Girl. Don't waste your time.


This review copyright 1998 E.C.McMullen Jr.

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*
KellyNote:

Watch the way the lips don't match the words when they mention the one about spider eggs in bubblegum.

The actual legend - completely untrue - was about spider eggs in Bubblicious bubblegum, and the original dialog and movie trailers did specify the brand, but the threat of legal action made them change it.

*
Horta, of course, is the name of the underground dwelling monster from the old Star Trek.

Coincidence?

 
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