Review Date: December 4, 2000
Released by: Elite Entertainment
Release date: 11/28/2000
Region 1, NTSC
Widescreen 1.85:1 | 16x9: Yes
Mrs. Slater (Lois Kelso Hunt) owns a house that is rented out to an all girl sorority. Mrs. Slater closes the house early each and every year, insisting all the girls be out by June 19th. This year the girls don't leave early. One evening when Mrs. Slater arrives at the house she walks in on the girls having their own little mini-party - drinking alcohol and telling jokes in their nighties. When the girls explain their intention to stay an extra few days and plan a big graduation party at the house, Mrs. Slater tells them to forget about it and be out by the morning.
Later Mrs. Slater finds Vicki, the sorority girl that came up with the idea of having the graduation party at the sorority house, and her boyfriend having sex. In a fit of rage she cuts up Vicki's water bed and promptly exits the room. Vicki runs after her, half naked, screaming that she'll get her revenge. Vicki and the rest of the girls go ahead with plans for the big graduation party. Of course the problem is Mrs. Slater isn't going to allow the party to happen. Vicki sees this as an opportunity for revenge. The group of girls plan a prank of Mrs. Slater. Katherine turns out to be the sole member against the prank, but she reluctantly goes along with it.
The prank doesn't turn out the way they expect when Mrs. Slater is accidentally killed. Katherine wants to go to the police but she is once again overruled by the others. They decide to hide the body until they have their party and can take some time to figure out what to do next. When some jocks at the party jump in the pool the girls figure their secret is about to be discovered. But the body isn't in the pool anymore; it's nowhere to be found. Before you know it the sorority girls begin dropping off like flies, one by one being murdered by an unknown killer. Is Mrs. Slater somehow alive? Or does someone else know what they did? The remaining girls must solve the mystery before the killer gets to them.
Not a bad little horror movie. The acting is good enough, there's some decent special effects and the story itself is moderately enjoyable. Sort of gives you an idea where movies like I Know What You Did Last Summer get their material, though I should note that The House on Sorority Row certainly wasn't the first to implement such a concept. There wasn't much of a scare factor here for me, but there are a few good gore scenes that many should enjoy and, of course, you get the usual t&a shots. Definitely not a classic by any means, but no doubt some will enjoy this one. I'd definitely recommend it as a rental to see if it suits your tastes.
Elite presents The House on Sorority Row in an anamorphic widescreen transfer in it's original 1.85:1 aspect ratio. Decent transfer here but there are some problems. There's a few print blemishes that appear (scratches, lines and dirt) and there's also some signs of grain during darker scenes, but it's all minimal and does not occur often. Also, a few nighttime scenes become overly bright for a few seconds. Colors are slightly faded, but as I've said before you can only expect so much for an old B movie that was made on a tiny budget. Image quality is generally sharp, though it does get soft in a handful of scenes. Not Elite's best, but it's still a good transfer overall. I'm going to rate it a B-.
The House on Sorority Row is presented in its original mono sound. Dialogue and sound were clearly audible throughout the presentation with no distortion heard. On a side note, I'd like to say that I really wish Elite would start noting what the sound is on the packaging. Some people wanting to buy this in a store may wish to know this, yet it's nowhere to be found on the packaging.
Theatrical trailer only.
Audio/video quality is definitely acceptable, though I think some additional restoration work could've made this a flawless presentation in the video department. The DVD is light on extras with the theatrical trailer being the only supplement. The movie itself is enjoyable if you don't go in expecting too much. I'd definitely recommend it as a rental. If you do decide to buy it, the $24.95 price tag is well justified.
Movie - C+
Image Quality - B-
Sound - B+
Supplements - C
- Running Time - 1 hour 32 minutes
- Rated R
- 1 Disc
- Chapter stops
- Mono sound