Archive for Jennifer Love Hewitt

I Still Know What You Did Last Summer

Posted in I Still Know What You Did Last Summer with tags , , on September 9, 2014 by Last Road Reviews

IMG_4665.JPG
I STILL KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER

*** ½ Out of 5

Tagline- Some Secrets Will Haunt You Forever!

Release Date- November 13th, 1998

Running Time- 100-Minutes

Rating- R

Screenplay- Trey Callaway

Director- Danny Cannon

Starring- Jennifer Love Hewitt, Freddie Prinze Jr., Brandy, Mekhi Phifer, Jennifer Esposito

By the time 1998 rolled the slasher film was once again popular, but this time the biggest difference is these films were now embraced by Hollywood. After the success of I Know What You Did Last Summer the sequel was rushed into production and came out just a little over a year later. When it comes to 90s horror Kevin Williamson is the first name that will come to mind and Williamson of course wrote Scream & IKWYDLS the two films that re-popularized the slasher film and that’s really what’s missing here as this one while in my opinion a fun film does lack the Kevin Williamson touch. I Still Know What You Did Last Summer was met with mixed reviews and is far inferior to the original, but with that said it does offer up enough fun and while it’ll never go down as one of the great slashers I would rate it as one of my favorites of the 90s. It’s just a fun film you can kick back and relax with.

1-year after the events of the original film, Julie (Hewitt) is still in college and still dealing with the events from her past and her relationship with Ray (Prinze Jr.). But when she and her friend Carla (Brandy) win a trip to the Bahamas they expect to have some fun, but Ben Willis (Muse Watson) the Fisherman shows up and begins to kill off the staff members at the hotel as he works his way to Julie.

The screenplay was written by Trey Calloway and the opening act is very much a rewrite of the original film as it focuses on Julie’s guilt over the events of the hit and run as well as her encounter with the fisherman. Even though the script early on is a total rehash and while it lacks the cleverness of Kevin Williamson’s writing it is however the strongest aspect of the script. In someways its like two films were written as once we get to the Bahamas the script takes a much lighter tone and it bares no resemblance to the opening as suddenly Julie is over her guilt. While the script does form its own identity the characters are more or less the same as the original. Bottom line is the script is nowhere near the level of the original, but it’s fairly entertaining, but the biggest flaw is the needless and silly plot twist in the final act. Trey Calloway isn’t Kevin Williamson, but he does deliver a fairly entertaining script that works best early on despite being a complete rehash, but Calloway does however always manage to keep the script fun.

Director Danny Cannon delivers a fun movie and while he seems content on following the same exact style of Jim Gillespie only he does this without the suspense and tension found in the first film. With that said however, Cannon does manage some decent scenes of suspense it spots. Unlike the first film, which works as both a thriller and slasher film, I Still Know is at its most fun and strongest when playing up to slasher conventions. The pace of the film starts off strong with a more serious tone, but once the film shifts locations and opts for a more fun tone the pace can be sluggish in spots. When all is said and done, Danny Cannon does craft a fun film with some well staged death scenes, but just don’t expect as good a film of the original and take I Still Know for what it is and you might find yourself enjoying it.

When it comes to the 90s Jennifer Love Hewitt is one of the teen queens and perhaps in someways the 90s version of Molly Ringwald. While Jennifer may not be known for horror films as she’s only done two I would still rate her as a scream queen as she has all the qualities. She has the girl next door look (only smoking hot) and she always had a clean image as you never read about her in the tabloids. In some of her films, like I Still Know, the makers of the film did play up to her sexuality, but she never exploited herself. A lot of young females regardless of if its film or music at some point drop the clean image and very much play up to their sexuality to better market themselves and than there are others who are more famous for their private lives than their work. I’ve never met Jennifer so I can’t sit here and tell you what she’s like in her personal life, but she always kept it classy in her films and personal life and never sold herself out for more fame and fortune and she very much seems like someone a young girl could aspire to be like. Her casting in the I Know movies were perfect as she again very much fits everything her character is like.

I think part of the problem here with I Still Know is while the original film had a solid story and perhaps a little more than most slasher films, but the way the story goes it doesn’t leave many options for a sequel unless its turned into a body count film. The original worked well as a mystery, but here we know who the killer is and if it was a new killer it may be too much like Scream. When it comes to sequels lets be honest just about all of them really aren’t needed, but some work better than others and I just think I Still Know is hindered by its concept since the mystery is now gone. But than again did Fridsy the 13th and Halloween really need all those sequels? But something just flowed better in most of them and of course they were made to cash in on the originals, but yet they still worked for the most part whereas I Still Know seems a lot more pointless. Regardless its still an entertaining film and while the pace can be an issue in spots, but I’ll admit I enjoyed this one perhaps more than when originally released.

IMG_4724.JPG

IMG_4725.JPG

IMG_4726.JPG

IMG_4727.JPG

IMG_4728.JPG

IMG_4731.JPG

IMG_4730.JPG

IMG_4729.JPG

IMG_4664.JPG

I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997) Review

Posted in I Know What You Did Last Summer with tags , , , on September 8, 2014 by Last Road Reviews

IMG_4662.JPG
I KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER

**** Out of 5

Tagline- If You’re Going to Bury the Truth, Make Sure It Stays Buried.

Release Date- October 17th, 1997

Running Time- 100-Minutes

Rating- R

Screenplay- Kevin Williamson

Director- Jim Gillespie

Starring- Jennifer Love Hewitt, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillippe, Freddie Prinze Jr.

Released in 1997 I Know What You Did Last Summer was part of the slasher film revival along with Scream with both films being written by Kevin Williamson. When looking back at the 90s it was Kevin Williamson who redefined not only the horror genre, but the teen TV drama with Dawson’s Creek. But sticking with horror, when Scream was released in 1996 the slasher film was pretty much dead with only the franchises making any money, but even they were a little below par and the horror genre as a whole, while still successful to some degree was probably at one of its weaker eras in quality and the in box office. But with Scream, Kevin Williamson took an old and tired style of film and brought a breath of fresh air to it. I Know What You Did Last Summer is every bit as well written as Scream though they’re also both quite different. ILWYDLS while a popular horror film in my opinion is also vastly underrated as well. If you ask me oit isn’t just one of the best slasher films of the 90s, but its the best of any decade. Kevin Williamson was very much on the pulse of the horror genre in the 90s and I would rate him as one of my film idols and a writer I often look to for inspiration.

Four friends make a vow to never again speak of the accident, in which they hit a man with a car and thinking he was dead they dumped his body into the water, but he was still alive at the time. Now a year later they get messages saying I Know What You Did Last Summer and soon enough they are stalked by someone who knows their secret and after a couple of appearances just trying to scare them it soon turns to murder as someone is out for revenge.

The screenplay by Kevin Williamson is cleverly plotted with terrific characters with plenty of depth. What I love about the films written by Williamson is they’re actually well written and while there are plenty of excellently written horror films by this point in the genre horror films weren’t exactly known for having a plot or strong writing. The beauty of horror films is you can get away with a subpar script (well to some degree), but when well written it makes things all the better and Williamson is a great writer. Williamson has a style like every writer, but he isn’t a one trick pony either and IKWYDLS very much showcases how talented of a writer he is. Its refreshing to see a slasher film that actually is well written with terrific characters and the script actually plays out more of a thriller with slasher aspects thrown in.

Director Jim Gillespie crafts a well paced film loaded with suspense and tension. Gillespie crafts much more of a thriller as the slasher parts are kept to a minimum until the final act. There’s been many films that mixed thriller and slasher and while some were successful the good bulk lacked identity, but Gillespie avoids that pitfall and neither the thriller or slasher take away from each other. IKWYDLS isn’t a body count film so if that’s what you’re expecting you might be letdown. The first murder by the fisherman doesn’t happen until the 38-minute mark. The next death doesn’t happen until the 72-minute mark. However in between death scenes Jim Gillespie builds an incredible amount of suspense and tension as the fisherman is waiting and watching. Once we get to the final act is when the film starts to play like the traditional slasher, but due to the build up its more effective than most. IKWYDLS also has perhaps the greatest chase scene of any slasher film. When the fisherman goes after Helen that whole sequence is the most effective scene in the film and in my opinion again rates as one of the best sequences in a slasher film.

What fascinates me the most about horror films in the post-Scream era is the casting and I’ve mentioned this in past reviews, but there came a point when it was nearly impossible to land an actor with any fame unless they were at a low point in their careers and there’s no way any up and coming actors sign on. IKWYDLS has an excellent cast with the main attraction being Jennifer Love Hewitt and Michelle Gellar both who were terrific. My only compliant is Jennifer doesn’t put up enough of a fight, but Jennifer has this really sweet and wholesome quality, which makes her one of my favorite scream queens despite only having a couple of credits.

I Know What You Did Last Summer was based off a novel by Lois Duncan and while I never read the novel from what I do know of it the book aims more for a young teen audience and the film while keeping the basic idea also very much strays. Lois Duncan has commented on her major dislike of the film and hated how it was turned into a teen slasher.

Overall IKWYDLS is one of my very favorite horror films of the 90s and one of my all time favorites. This was at the peak of Kevin Williamson’s career and later in 1997 Scream 2 was released and was another massive hit. But who knew not long after this Williamson would hit a rut as after the Faculty in 1998 it would be a while before he found any success as the films he wrote or produced were box office duds and his TV shows post-Dawson’s Creek didn’t last very long. While the Kevin Williamson era didn’t last more than a couple of years he accomplished more in those couple of years than most in the genre. Its films like this is why Kevin Williamson is one of my film idols.

IMG_4712.JPG

IMG_4713.JPG

IMG_4714.JPG

IMG_4715.JPG

IMG_4716.JPG

IMG_4717.JPG

IMG_4719.JPG

IMG_4718.JPG

IMG_4721.JPG

IMG_4723.JPG

IMG_4722.JPG

IMG_4720.JPG

IMG_4663.JPG

Top 15 Scream Queens

Posted in Top 15 Scream Queens with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 19, 2013 by Last Road Reviews

What exactly makes a Scream Queen? Is it someone who has appeared in many horror films? What about an actress that made 1 horror film that she gave a great performance to go along with a great film? Many people will say you need a few horror films to be a Scream Queen and that’s fair enough, but what about if most of those films are terrible? So with this list I decided that it doesn’t matter if you have 1 credit or 100. All that matters is quality of the film and performance.

I know some will disagree with me including actresses that aren’t really known for horror, but again it’s about quality more than anything else. There were several actresses left out that I really wanted to include such as Daniela Doria, Zora Kerova, Lorraine De Selle and they almost made the cut, but in the end decided against it.

(For some reason I am having trouble with uploads so if any pictures don’t show sorry about that.

15. Hayden Panettiere

Notable films- Scream 4

20130319-141150.jpg

I know many will disagree with my placing of Hayden at number 15 and I could have placed several other actresses here, but I went with Hayden because Kirby in Scream 4 is just awesome! A hot chick who loves horror. As much as I liked Scream 4 without Hayden it might have been a little less.

14. Franca Stoppi

Notable Films- Beyond the Darkness, The Other Hell

20130319-141250.jpg

Her character Iris was downright creepy in Beyond the Darkness and while that may be her most notable credit (she has done other horror flicks) Iris is one of the more memorable characters and Stoppi more than deserving.

13. Marilyn Burns

Notable films- The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

20130319-141414.jpg

Like the above she has a couple more credits, but TCM is all she needs. I easily could have rated her higher. Besides a great performance the hell that she went through while filming alone gets her on this list. As Sally, Marilyn Burns was great and sure I could fill this up with other actresses with tons of credits, but none of those actresses gave as strong a performance or were in as good a film.

12. Lisa Wilcox

Notable films- A Nightmare on Elm Street 4 & 5

20130319-141532.jpg

I always preferred Alice over Nancy. That’s just me, but for certain purposes I couldn’t rate Lisa Wilcox higher. I just love how Alice starts and what she becomes. From shy nerd to kick ass chick ready to kick Freddy’s ass

11. Corteney Cox

Notable films- Scream, Scream 2, Scream 3, Scream 4

20130319-141654.jpg

Nobody can play the bitch like Corteney and rather than wanna see her meet a grisly end you root for her to survive. Her performances are hysterical and she always brings the fun factor to the Scream movies.

10. Cristina Galbo

Notable films- What Have You Done to Solange, The Killer Must Kill Again, Living Dead at Manchester Morgue

20130319-141816.jpg

One of the most stunning women to grace the screen, in all her films, Cristina not only brings beauty, but something innocent and naive to her performances.

9. Jennifer Love Hewitt

Notable films- I Know What You Did Last Summer, I Still Know What You Did Last Summer

20130319-141927.jpg

I know some will disagree with J. Love on the list and perhaps as high as she rates. What guy wasn’t totally crushing on Jennifer back in the 90s? With her stunning looks, beautiful smile, J. Love brought the super hot girl next door quality to her films.

8. Catriona MacColl

Notable films- City of the Living Dead, The Beyond, House by the Cemetery

20130319-142043.jpg

Her work with Fulci was great and MacColl brought a lot of class and charm in her work with Lucio Fulci.

7. Heather Langenkamp

Notable films- A Nightmare on Elm Street, A Nightmare on Elm Street 3, New Nightmare

20130319-142249.jpg

I can hear the groans now over the ranking. Nancy is one of the greats for sure and the original Elm Street a masterpiece. Nancy wasn’t like most characters in horror films as she was not only smart, but didn’t need help in taking down Freddy. I’ve always loved the character and how she changed in the series.

6. Edwige Fenech

Notable films- The Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh, Your Vice Is a Locked Room and Only I Have the Key, The Case of the Bloody Iris, Strip Nude for Your Killer, Hostel: Part II

20130319-142406.jpg

Is there any woman more stunning? I think not. Her Giallo work was truly excellent and it didn’t hurt she was always willing to shed her clothes. Edwige is one of my all-time favorites and wanted to rate her even higher.

5. Daria Nicolodi

Notable Films- Deep Red, Inferno, Tenebre, Phenomena, Opera

20130319-143424.jpg

Her work with Argento is brilliant and at times European horror isn’t always know for strong female characters, but with Deep Red she broke that. Through the years her work with Argento made her a staple in the horror genre and Daria who sadly sometimes gets looked over is a terrific actress.

4. Danielle Harris

Notable Films- Halloween 4, Halloween 5, Halloween, Halloween II, Hatchet II

20130319-142622.jpg

Danielle is probably the only child actor in a horror film that didn’t get on my nerves. As young Jamie Lloyd in Halloween 4 & 5, Danielle gave performances far beyond her years and her work with Rob Zombie in his Halloween films were great. Halloween II she really got to show off her acting range. But she will always be remembered as Jamie Lloyd and dare I say I liked her more than Laurie?

3. Sheila Keith

Notable Films- The House of Whipcord, Frightmare, The Comeback

20130319-142741.jpg

Sadly an actress that time has forgotten. Her work with Pete Walker is truly amazing. She was downright creepy in House of Whipcord and the Comeback, but Frightmare she was just chilling! Its sad many horror fans don’t mention her as she was a terrific actress and if she doesn’t seriously creep you out something must be wrong with you.

2. Jamie Lee Curtis

Notable Films- Halloween, The Fog, Prom Night, Terror Train, Halloween II, Halloween H20

20130319-142859.jpg

What can I say about Jamie that hasn’t already been stated before? Her title of the scream queen is more than fitting and deserving as her work in the genre is iconic for a reason. As Laurie Strode she set the bar on the woman in danger role. I often alternate on my top 2 picks since both are more than deserving.

1. Neve Campbell

Notable Films- Scream, Scream 2, Scream 3, Scream 4, The Craft

20130319-143024.jpg

This might be a surprise to some, but as Sydney, Neve Campbell set the bar for the modern scream queen. She was vulnerable, but not weak as she fights back at every turn. Neve brought this sweet tough innocence to Syd, but when push comes to shove she’ll kick your ass!