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Author Topic: Graduation Day
Valley

Dated Julie From 'Valley Girl' (allegedly!)
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In the 80s, it seemed like every holiday or landmark event became hazardous for young adults. It sorta began with the quite simply titled movie "Halloween" from the 70's, but it seems like the success of "Friday The 13th" started the onslaught of horror slashers that filled the 80's.

"Graduation Day" is one of those forgotten horror films from the early 80's. I guess there wasn't enough carnage during Jamie Lee Curtis's "Prom Night"? [Razz]

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The movie begins at a Midville High School track meet. Everyone is cheering on track star Laura Ramstead, clearly about to win a race, but also about to possibly break a record. Her coach, looking stern and nasty is using a more negative approach to get her to run faster. He’s telling her she’s worthless and can run faster as she pushes herself toward the finish line. She nears the finish, quite obviously pushing herself to the limit and wins the race. As she crosses the finish line and everyone cheers, she takes a few more steps and collapses to the ground. She’s dead.

Following the tragedy, her sister Anne returns home from the Navy, and suddenly other members of the track team begin to get hacked up by some unseen psycho. Is Anne behind the slashing, or is it one of the other half-dozen suspects the film throws your way? And, more importantly, will there be anyone left to walk across the stage on graduation night?

I've never been much of a fan of Troma films, however this early offering is one of the few exceptions. But don't get me wrong.. this is still a 'discover all your dead friends at the end' b-movie 80's slasher. But the fact the movie is so disjointed.. actually makes it more entertaining. For instance, if Anne is the main character.. don't you think it is odd that she goes missing for 30 minutes of the film? ha

This would have been a great movie with alternate endings.. because bascially almost every adult in the movie is a possible suspect and quite a few of them were rather slimy individuals. The film editor must have just hooked up his new fangled flash editing device because he used it non-stop. Infact, the VHS box should have had a warning label on it like the rides at Disney World for seizures. [Big Grin]

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Like so many early 80's slashers .. the fashion was still 70's and the music score was rather loud. However, here's what makes "Graduation Day" worth checking out in my opinion:

There is a rollerskating party with a performance by the new wave group Felony. They played the tune "Gangster Rock" and our flash editor guy does a stylish job of cutting back and forth from the band performance to the killer stalking two more victims in the woods. I've seen a ton of comments over the years dissing this scene, but I thought it was kinda cool actually.

And how about seeing scream queen Linnea Quigley on the screen with a very young and quite annoying Vanna White. Both have great stories behind how they were on this movie.. Linnea Quigley actually came in as a replacement for an actress that refused to do her nude scene after filming started and Vanna White's Uncle was involved in the film somehow.

Here's a pic of Vanna from the film:

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ha!

So if you're having a really booooorrrrrrrring day.. have some fun with "Graduation Day"!

[ 31. July 2011, 14:14: Message edited by: Valley ]

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cindymancini
Selling underpants to geeks since 1984...
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WOW Valley! You sure do come up with excellent topics & bring light to some movies that have been left in the dark since the 80's! Love that!! Thank you!!

Graduation Day, let's see...I sought out a copy of this movie probably 5 or 6 years ago. I have to say, I liked it! I think I watched Slaughter High right around the same time & preferred Graduation Day over it. It's a perfect summer horror movie & just so authentically 80's!!

I would recommend it to folks here on the board! I believe it's on Netflix. Check it out...It's a "painless" watch...lol!! [Wink]

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cindymancini
Selling underpants to geeks since 1984...
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P.S. I'm pretty sure there's a few different versions of cover art for this movie. The one I saw had a picture of a girl on the front and her eyes were huge blacked out kind of holes...I'll try to find a pic...
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Valley

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Like this? ha

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aTomiK
.... has green eyes as well....
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Just watched Graduation Day and i liked it!
It was written and directed by Herb Freed (Tomboy, Survival Game)
All entertaining movies.

Cool and funky opening credits tune. I also liked the band Felony.
That rollerskating party death scene is awesome.

I loved the characters in this one. Far from politically correct people
and that´s what makes them real and interesting.

Did i see a Bee Gee´s poster in Laura´s room? I definitely saw a Vampirella poster in Kevin´s.

Slasher fans, check it out!

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Crash
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"Graduation Day" trivia: In the interesting documentary "Going to Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film" (2006), the filmmakers interviewed writer/director Herb Freed, and I learned that he's also an ordained rabbi! That's pretty kewl if you ask me, knowng the films that Freed's done.
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cindymancini
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quote:
Originally posted by Valley:
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Like this? ha

Yep! That's the one!
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Ronnie
Going to the Prom with Tommy
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I'll add this one to my queue. Everyone here seems to have enjoyed at least one viewing, so why not? [Smile] Thanks, again Val!
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Ronnie
Going to the Prom with Tommy
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I'll add this one to my queue. Everyone here seems to have enjoyed at least one viewing, so why not? [Smile] Thanks, again Val!
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pettyfan
Livin' next door to the Klopeks
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Ahem. I guess I'll be the voice of disent lol. [Wink] I watched Graduation Day via Netflix's instant watch back in the spring. I really liked the first half of the movie. Then it just sorta fell apart for me. I'd wanted to see this movie for quite awhile and I was really looking forward to it. I think it just got kinda boring for me. Maybe I'll watch it again sometime and change my mine.
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