I Know What You Did Last Summer

23  MAY
Someone knows their secret, someone knows they're scared, and someone knows what they did last summer.

Directed by  Jim Gillespie
Written by  Lois Duncan, Kevin Williamson
Starring:  Jennifer Love Hewitt (Julie James)
Sarah Michelle Gellar (Helen Shivers)
Ryan Phillippe (Barry Cox)
Freddie Prinze Jr. (Ray Bronson)
Bridgette Wilson (Elsa Shivers)
Anne Heche (Missy Egan)
Runtime: 100 minutes

Based on the same recipe of Scream, I Know What You Did Last Summer is a rather standard horror movie designed for teenagers. Hence, I am probably just too old (I fear to say 'mature'...) to fully appreciate it, I've already seen a lot of similar horror movies and I don't like the "I Know What Will Happen Next" feeling that persecuted me during the whole vision...

The plot is about four friends who are celebrating the last day of their summer holidays and run over a mysterious man with their car. They don't want their life ruined by this accident and so they decide to throw the corpse in the sea and simply forget about it. However, a year later, they start receiving mysterious letters that say "I Know"...

At the beginning the movie is slow and boring as the various flat characters are introduced. Then the story becomes a bit more interesting and catchy although the development of the characters is quite lame and predictable. Finally the horror part starts, featuring the typical mysterious murderer disguised by a fisherman's costume (the movie is set in a little village on the coast whose main business is fishing...).

The best aspect of the movie are two or three jump scenes that really made me leap out of the seat! One of these in particular (which I cannot explain to avoid spoiling the movie!) is so unexpected and placed in a 'strategic' moment that really makes it worth seeing if you like these sort of shocking experiences. Apart from these scary scenes, there isn't much gore nor many tense moments and, actually, some supposedly frightening shots weren't that terrifying, probably because the fisherman didn't look so scary in this contest.

The rest of the movie is completely ordinary, the actors, both the main and the minor characters, the chasing scenes, the narration, the finale. For example, all the clues that leads to think about the identity of the killer are simply forged to distract from the real identity that is simply impossible to guess. Regarding the finale, there have been many examples in the past of movie that left a way open for the sequel but here we have a highway! However, while the pre-finale is very dull and unimaginative, the last few minutes are at least interesting and the last scene is... not fair to describe...

In the end, I Know What You Did Last Summer is loosely based on the same ideas of Scream although most of the details that made it a good movie (eg. the witty dialogues, the satire and spoof of the genre) are completely missing here, resulting in a pure and plain horror movie. Moreover, although I can't remember exactly the plots of cartoons like "Scooby-Doo" I watched on the TV ages ago, I had the unpleasant feeling that I already saw many stories like this one (a mysterious killer dressed in a peculiar way, the chases, the investigation, the disclosure)...

Rating: 6.5  **

Links:  Official Site




© Copyright Sergio Monesi, 1997-1999.
Last updated: 25 Jun 1999