We don't always watch movies that are amazingly bad. Sometimes we watch movies that are mostly bad. This movie fell into the later category sadly, though it has some redeeming qualities (and it could play well as a MST3K with large chunks edited out ) the painful-to-watch parts overrode any fun qualities this film had to offer.
The plot unfolds something like this: A tight knit group of high school boys are preparing to throw themselves into collage life, Animal House style. But nothing could prepare them for the tragic reality that crashes in on them when one of their sisters is violently murdered by a roaming biker gang. Faced with their first taste of the frustrating reality of the slow processes of the legal system, they decide to take matters into their own hands. Together they'll take on crime in every corner of their crime ridden city, making enemies on the force as well as in the criminal underworld. Can they tough it out long enough avenge the death of their friend, or will they fall apart at the seams?
The interesting parts of this flick: This is the first movie we've seen that's attempted to blend the tone of Animal House with the tones of Deliverance and Deathwish. And although they don't pull it off, it still made the movie far more interesting than it could have been. There's also very strong undertones of vigilantism being the polar extreme of crime rather than the only solution to crime. Most “men take the law into their own hands” movies are weighted to the “this is the only way to get justice” end of the scale, where this film weighs in with more of a “you might be as bad as the bad guys if you dole out 'justice' without due process” ideal.
Reasons not to watch: There as so many scenes that don't makes sense in this movie, but the one that lost us was excessively violent to the only women in the cast. We fast-forwarded through a sexual-assault scene that the filmmakers chose to cut back to at least 4 times. It was excessively long to say the least, but it was also totally unnecessary. Sexual violence scenes are almost always unnecessary, but especially if they're added to pad out nudity rather than to make cometary. And unfortunately, justifying boobies shots seemed to be what this movie was after. (That, or they were trying to drive home how bad guys were really, really bad and the good guys were really, really motivated, which is equally distasteful and will turn us off from a movie just as quick.)
Things that almost won us back: The main frat boy manages to find time to animate multiple short films. That's in addition to taking on the bad guys at night and attending normal classes during the day. And though we absolutely don't buy that this character was creative in any way, the animations are pretty great and are worth watching on their own. There's also the ridiculousness that every time the vigilante frat goes out to fight crime, they find it. Like instantly. There seems to be people committing crime every five feet in this town, but there's hardly a cop to be seen.
That's right that's: Ernest Borgnine and Richard Roundtree teamed up as the detectives on the case. Actually they might be the only detectives in the whole town...
What we learned: If your friend takes a shotgun blast to the chest, don't take him back the frat house to discuss the happenings of the last few weeks. Just take him to the hospital, otherwise he'll probably die on your bed right before you blow your frat up with a box of grenades...