PLEDGE NIGHT (1990)

Directed & Edited By: Paul Ziller
Written By: Joyce Snyder 
Cinematography: Big Paul Smith 

Cast: Todd Eastland, Dennis Sullivan, Craig Derrick, Shannon McMahon, David Neal Evans, James Davies, Joey Belladonna, Will Kempke, Michael T. Henderson, Robert Lantini 

A college fraternity in the middle of hazing their new pledges during “hell week” incur the wrath of a long-deceased pledge who died during a hazing gone wrong 20 years ago.


This is what secondary markets were made for, as this is definitely a movie you would more capture on the straight-to-home video market or see on cable late at night. 

As it is lower budgeted and calls itself a horror film which it is, but actually is more like a comedy most of its run time about the hardships of pledging and then in the final act becomes a horror film.

Which at first seems like it will be about one of the frat brothers finally losing it and snapping into the role that he has been given to be the disturbed frat brother, but then it ends up being a supernatural tale.

Acid Sid the evil spirit seemingly bent on revenge is obviously the filmmakers trying to create an iconic horror character ala, Freddy Kruger. Who is not only a killer but the conductor of violence, a horror mascot, and vigilante as well as comic relief with his own liners.

The film has stilted and awkward acting and while it’s not the best-made film. It is entertaining in a simple, bad, and cheesy, it’s kind of way. As you can see the filmmakers are trying to have their heart and imagination in the right place.

The film is exploitive with plenty of nudity and sex with a misogynistic attitude throughout. Which also challenges the film’s villain’s mentality. Where this spirit is seeking revenge so it makes sense to kill the frat brothers and even the pledges who swear allegiance to the frat, but the sorority sisters might seem like collateral damage or maybe as collaborators so they are just as guilty but for some kills, they seem like more innocent victims there to up the body count and for nudity’s sake. Their kills seem more mean spirited

Even though as you get to know the characters you know who will end up being victims, but never in which order or how. This should be the new challenge to horror film fans who always can predict what will happen or how it will end. Challenge themselves with trying to come up with the kill order of the main characters. Not random one-scene characters who are collateral damage or in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Again this film is unintentionally campy and seems to be the type of film USA’s UP ALL NIGHT would have shown and appreciated giving the film the audience it craves. 

Unfortunately, this is left as a relic of another time. Hopefully to be discovered and either appreciated or ridiculed by an audience. 

Though it definitely plays more for a horror crowd who don’t mind their entertainment a little cheesy and somewhat predictable. It’s a good bad movie. 

Grade: C

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