HIDE AND GO SHRIEK (US video cover- unrated)

"Close your eyes.
Count to 10.
And run for your life."

directed by: Skip Schoolnik
starring: Brittain Frye, Donna Baltron, George Thomas, Rebunkah Jones

(back of video blurb):
       "New Star Entertainment presents "HIDE AND GO SHRIEK".

       This shocking thriller captures the horror eight teenagers face when they sneak into a furniture store for an all night party. A game of hide-and-seek turns into a grisly nightmare as the members of the group are murdered , one by one, leaving the others to the chilling realization that they could be next.

       Close your eyes, count to ten, and run for your life..."HIDE AND GO SHRIEK" is one game you'll be dying to finish."

choice dialogue:

"I told you it was over...and now you kill people?!"

slash with panache?

       A mildly diverting, if pretty stupid, teen slasher along the lines, but not as good as, the same years CHOPPING MALL (1987).

       The movie opens with a couple of scenes that the makers probably thought would come across as intriguing and oddball. They play more like MIAMI VICE noir- well I suppose this is 1987!....A man is glimpsed applying globs of makeup, to his partially obscured and stubbled face, with all the restraint of a rabid Tammy Faye Bakker. He then cruises the streets and picks up a prostitute- the only one who doesn’t recoil from the sight of him, he takes her to a back alley for sex before stabbing her in the gut and leaving her to die in a pool of blood..... After the credits we are introduced to a bunch of typical late 80’s teens- they all have huge hair (including the boys, apart from one who is teased about his ‘small’ buzz-cut through-out the rest of the movie.). These eight airheads- four male and four female, plan to spend the night partying in a cavernous furniture store- which is owned by the father of one of the boys. (Here we get the chance to participate in the time honoured pass time of trying to guess who will survive the movie; will it be the nice girl who wants to save herself for her marriage bed? The blonde girl who looks about 42, with the eye-wateringly tight denim shorts? The sweet young couple who want to loose their virginity in each others arms that night? Or perhaps the boy with the buzz cut? )....Anyway, after much macho mating humour the, frankly irritating, group of ‘craaazzzy’ kids get into a van, speed across town and slip into the store before closing and hide until the place is shut and apparently empty. But, unbeknownst to them an ex-con, who has a job at the store, has been given permission by the owner to live in the basement until he can sort out a place Hey you with the big hair...yes you!...Do you really expect to live through the night with a perm like that?!of his own. This despite everyone else saying things like, "Oooh, he gives me the creeps!"..... Once the group think the coast is clear they come out of hiding and start to do the things they usually do in teen slasher films- but not before we get a boring time filler tour of the store; they get the beers out, find a bed and begin to make-out, and in a move to justify that great punning title, one of the girls suggests a game of hide-and-seek. She follows it with the equally sensible suggestion- "Hey guys why don’t we all split up?". Off they go for a spot of hiding and naturally more shagging- (this movie has a high quota of t&a- both male and female). Whilst the fun continues, and without them realising, someone circles the store locking all the exits and watching their every move....

       HIDE AND GO SHRIEK is real teenie-kill on a budget. With hardly an original thought in its head it gleefully molests every last cliché it can get its hands on. The big hair, day-glo fashion and 80’s speak provide quite a few cheesy chuckles. But as a horror movie, like I said, CHOPPING MALL did it all so much better. It does pre-date another store slasher INTRUDER (1988)- which distinguished itself by some funky camera work and energetic pacing. HIDE AND GO SHRIEK doesn’t compare well with that film either but in one kill scene it actually dares to show an adventurous camera angle- a shot, from underneath the water as a girl is drowned in a hand basin. The kind of quirky camera work that help make Scott Spiegel’s film so diverting. But one adventurous camera angle isn’t exactly a huge recommendation is it!? And that is about it for experimentation... Another film it attempts to borrow from is the 70’s shocker TOURIST TRAP (1979). The store, albeit a furniture store, is chock-a-block full of shop dummies. The rather weak reason given is because the owner thinks, "...it makes the place look lived in." (!?) Admittedly you do not have to work very hard to make mannequins creepy and they are mildly so here. It also, in a way, borrows the device from TERROR TRAIN (1980) where the killer dressed up in the costume of the last victim. In this movie the killer dresses in the clothes of the last victim- be them male or female, and is admittedly eye-catching in the slinky blank negligee! The film is not especially scary and has an overabundance of lame false scares in the first half. It does manage to achieve a little bit of charnel house intensity towards the end and the hysterics are quite fun- but that is mainly because of the ripe acting that goes along with it! Despite being advertised as ‘The unrated version contains footage too shocking for the theatrical release’, the gore is pretty tame. The only really noteworthy and effective death scene is when one of the girls is decapitated by a lift, otherwise it is strictly the throw-some-blood-and-see-what-sticks variety. The ending and the grand revelation of the killer’s identity are really, really dumb. And it not only manages to be stupid and preposterous but also offensive to boot! A triple whammy stinker to be sure..... Still, HIDE AND GO SHRIEK must be the only film in living memory where a wok provides an, admittedly oblique, clue to the motivation of the killer!

BODYCOUNT 7  bodycount!   female:3 / male:4

        1) Female stabbed in gut.
        2) Female teen drowned in hand basin.
        3) Male teen impaled on spikes.
        4) Male teen impaled on the arm of a shop dummy.
        5) Female teen decapitated by lift.
        6) Male stabbed through neck.
        7) Male killed offscreen (method unseen).