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I Know What You Did Last Summer Review

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One year ago, a group of reckless teenagers wer ein a car accident, moving down a pedestrian in their vehicle. They agreed to dump the body, and went their separate ways. Now someone has turned up, leaving sinister notes, and their lives are about to get very unpleasant.

★★★★★

As the opening aerial shot sweeps into a gloomy coastline towards a solitary figure brooding above a long, rocky drop, it soon becomes clear that last summer didn't involve sun, sea and a number nine double-decker bus.

Having continued the end-of-school celebrations with some shenanigans on the beach, four chums are driving home along the darkened clifftop road when the BMW crumple zone is severely tested by an unidentified object. Further inspection produces a bloodied welly. And then the prostrate figure from whence it came. As tempers, adrenaline and fear run high, the decision is taken to ditch the body.

A year on and wracked with guilt, Julie (Hewitt) wants nothing to do with her former mates until a spooky note bearing only the titular words turns up. Then things start turning sinister. Barry (Phillipe) is mowed down by his own car, Helen (Geller) has her hair chopped on the eve of her beauty queen parade, and something altogether more unpleasant winds up in Julie's boot. With anniversaries, coastal setting, untimely deaths, and the town forever shrouded in foreboding meteorology, echoes of John Carpenter's The Fog ring out, and Scream scriptwriter Kevin Williamson's follow-up looks like another winner. The biggest disappointment then, is when it abandons its own neatly constructed premise far too early, and much of the fearful uncertainty drains away. There are, however, some cracking shocks, first time director Gillespie drawing a decent jump factor from his young cast (all good, especially Hewitt from TV's Party Of Five) and with Scream 2 well on the way, this appetiser proves that nouveau horror is alive and kicking hard.

Until it gives up at the two thirds mark, this is a decent companion piece to Scream, but the final act needs to be taken to with a meathook.