Prom Night (1980)

One of the earliest of the ’80s slasher craze, this Canadian-made production is certainly unique in some ways. The pace is deliberate, there’s an underlying sense of humor that’s unexpectedly light, and while the characters aren’t particularly well-developed they’re at least well-established. Frankly the death scenes are rather underwhelming (except the van scene), but director Paul Lynch manages to establish an effective mood and exuberant atmosphere appropriate for the titular event, and it gives the movie an unexpected urgency. Jamie Lee Curtis is, of course, charismatic and likable in the lead role, the music selection is memorably effective, and the climax is notably melancholy.

Rating: ★★★ (out of 5)

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