What type of movie would a business major make? How about a horror movie that could be made on a low budget, but thanks to marketable elements and the way it was released, it is a movie likely to make a return on investment? (That is ROI in case you want to sound fancy at your next social gathering.) That movie is Pool Party Massacre and the filmmaker is Drew Marvick. What starts as fun in the sun by the pool for a group of party people, quickly dilutes into a nightmare when a mystery killer begins murdering them one by one.
Pool Party Massacre is loving tribute to the 80’s slasher genre. From the moment you see the credit sequence with 8-bit graphics, the slow motion shot of girls walking in their bikinis and a bucket of blood hitting the floor, Horror fans will know they are home.
There are plenty of kills here and all are done with practical effects. From the very first scene the blood starts flowing. This strong opening scene features LeeAnna Vamp (“Cosplay Melee (TV)”) and her husband Cameron Lee Vamp. Pool Party Massacre also serves up some top shelf nudity, another expectation of the genre
The story is not complex, the characters do not have far reaching arcs, but I would not expect it….. this is Pool Party Massacre. Some comic relief comes in the form of Clay, played by Nick Byer (“Get Hansel! (Short)!”, “Morning Wood (Short)”).
Clay and his friend Troy, portrayed by Mark Justice (“Atomic Shark”), crash the party with the hope of getting up close and personal with the ladies poolside. Crude humor pervades while Clay tries many direct approaches to flirt with these girls. At one point he tries to impress them with a conspiracy theory on the hidden truth behind Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.
This was one of many movie references I enjoyed in Pool Party Massacre. Other highlights would be how the killer uses a different tool from the tool shed to slice and hammer away at each victim. Students of horror will recognize that element from movies such as The Toolbox Murders, Slumber Party Massacre and The Evil Dead.
This is the first feature from writer/director/producer/actor Drew Marvick, and it is clear that he would do all he could to make Pool Party Massacre happen. Things like casting your wife, Jenifer Marvick as Kelly, or filming at your parents house as the main location then using rooms in his own house to stage the most bloody scenes in the movie.
You barrow tools from your cast to use as murder weapons. If you are wondering why there is not much swimming in Pool Party Massacre, it is because due to delays they had to film in the dead of winter instead of the Las Vegas Summer as planned. I know details like this because of the extensive bonus features that come with the blu-ray….. which brings me to what I was most impressed by with Pool Party Massacre.
If you need proof that Drew Marvick knows his audience, look no further than the way Pool Party Massacre was released. Our Blu-Ray screener arrived along with a signed sticker from the filmmaker. Little touches like this show the difference with indie films. Most of the big studio movies do not come with bonus features anymore. Pool Party Massacre on the other hand is packed with fun and entertaining extras, a behind the scenes shows how many of the death scenes were achieved…. and even how hard it was to clean up afterwards.
Drew takes you on a location tour of the house where the action happens, this feature was about as funny and interesting as something like this could be. Then there are two commentaries, one with director Drew Marvick and his mother, which was informative and maybe the first slasher film ever to have a commentary with the filmmaker’s mother.
The cast commentary was…… well, not as informative. Overall these extras make the Blu-Ray a real get for all you genre fans out there. Or for you die hard fans, the VHS of Pool Party Massacre is available on their website, along with t-shirts, hats and lunch boxes, all with that iconic cover art that harks back to 80’s horror perfectly.
In closing, as long as you know what you are jumping into with Pool Party Massacre, you will smile and laugh at all the retro horror greatness. Pool Party Massacre is available on Amazon and I-Tunes.
Curt Wiser is the Writer/Director of the suspense movie Cam-Girl. As a child of the 80’s he is happy to see other filmmaker’s work and share them with the rest of the world.