Bloody New Year (1987)

   

Directed by: Norman J. Warren

Written by: Frazer Pearce, Hayden Pearce & Norman J. Warren

Starring:

.... Rick
Suzy Aitchison .... Lesley
Daniel James .... Spud
Nikki Brooks .... Janet
Julian Ronnie .... Tom
.... Carol

Release Date: Cannes Film Festival: May 11, 1987

Rating:

 

A group of teenage kids are shipwrecked on an island during the early summer season and find an abandoned hotel that hasn't been used since a 1959 New Years Eve party in which ghosts and zombies reside by it and doing away with anyone that resides there as well as turning them into ghouls and zombies themselves.

 

The flick shows a beginning taking place in 1959 on a New Years Eve dance in the hotel there as it looked decent to make us all think that it was that time era and then we have something happening to someone but it doesn't explain too much of this when we suddenly find something happen present day since this scene was terribly rushed.
Alot of nice takes on the group of teenage kids at a theme park as well as showing all the rides which looked uplifting and enjoyable to watch on a summer day.
A real suspenseful moment and attention grabber is when we see 3 bikers scaring someone on a ride and the kids trying to defend her as well as great chases on them running away from these goons as well as trying to get away inside some fun houses and events like that which made me watch carefully wondering if everyone will get away safe or not.
However later in the story we have the kids on a boat in an ocean and it happens to sink as there's no one panicking like we'd think that they would which somewhat spoils the suspense in the story and should've been done alot better.
Nice camera shots on everyone entering the abandoned hotel room where Christmas stuff is displayed as well as them spotting old fashioned displays like a black and white TV showing an old show as well as magazines and so fourth. Then we see ghostly events of things moving by themselves but it looked more campy than spooky. Yet there's entertainingly ghostly moments when there's a reflection in the mirror with someone whom is now dead. This draws a nice mysterious moments into the story that unravels.
A fairly decent moment for a haunting is when we spot a figure of a maid suddenly appearing in a ghostly manner and then helps Lesley out with a towel after realising that she's wet after being drenched in the ocean which adds more mystery to the story.
I enjoyed a scene when both Tom and Carol go exploring in a cellar as it gave me the chills that things looked gloomy down there as this reminds me of my childhood when being too scared to go down somewhere that's dark wondering if something spooky will happen later on.
Neat moments when the gang is watching an old movie in the theatre there and then a character comes out of the screen and grabs Spud as well as what this character does later on. It was supposed to make you jump on what happened here but failed in order to do so. Still it's horror entertainment regardless.
A decent near intense moment when Carol falls and is caught in a net and struggling against this which of course drew me in more so as to what her boyfriend Tom tries to do in order to rescue her. However after this moments start to flop big time when suddenly something ghoulish rises up and tries to strangle her which was supposed to make you jump out of your seat but this situation looked too cheesy.
Another situation that falls flat is when Rick and Janet are outside and hears laughter which sounds like a laugh track from a sitcom as well as things moving which is supposed to look chilling but this looked fairly corny to watch but good camera shots on a chase with them running away from this ghostly moment.
A bizarre but entertaining situation is when Lesley opens a door and we see a blizzard spraying on her in the hotel room which is fun to watch for those who like a feel of cornballish horror moments as I must admit that this was done in fair taste.
Another bizarre moment is when the bikers find them there and tries to attack them and then we spot Carol turning ghoulish and attacking them which doesn't make sense as to how she turned into this figure.
More mild entertainingly situations when some of the survivors runs outside to spot a crashed plane as well as another ghoul approaching them and what they do to snuff this living dead person which also worked in nicely for those who enjoy low budget horror of this type.
A well done low budget feel with Tom suddenly acting out of it and then acting strange with a demonic voice as this was a nice touch to the story that he is no longer himself. Plus an effective moment when the walls in an elevator grabs for Janet which is definetely out of the ordinary.
More creepy moments is when both Rick and Lesley enter an entertainment room when a ghostly woman hosts an event and then later turns ghoulish talking to them both and how deadly things will be along with what had happened there which seemed to work okay into the story but at the same time terribly evil and twisted too.
Nice mist with ghouls trying to attack both Rick and Lesley as this looked cleverly done on their struggles against the madness there.
A well drawn in moment is when both Rick and Lesley think that they've found their boat to get away we have Janet calling out to them as I got the feeling that it wasn't her at all since these are total teasers in a horror flick. Also the ending looked rather confusing as to what happens next.
Bottom line is that I found this film to be extremely weird and very confusing. It doesn't explain itself too well at all but there are some fun touches throughout the story and some rather bland one's too mixed in with lame ghoulish situations too. Seemed to borrow a bit from Evil Dead with a mesh of other horror films since we've seen these moments happen many times. The film doesn't leave a New Years type of vibe like it was supposed to have.

The acting is quite wooden but will do my best here .... (Rick) seemed to be one of the better one's in the cast as he shows some good energy and adrenaline by what he does and reacts well to the suspense surrounding him. Was good by using a gun and firing away against his struggles. Also comes across well by acting smart on things too. Had the right appeal to this role too.
Suzy Aitchison (Lesley) seemed a bit stiff in her performance as it sounded like she was doing a voice over in her performance which of course don't seem naturally done at all. Yet she tried to show it off as much as she could by being level headed on things as well as doing her best by showing some energy during the terrors surrounding her. She wasn't overly terrible but needed a bit of a push.
Nikki Brooks (Janet) yet seemed to add some nice enthusiasm into her part of the film especially whenever she freaks out or screams during the terrors that happen to her. She was right on the ball by bringing her freaked out attitude to a real hype. Shows a nice hyperactive behavior with her speaking. She drew my attnetion in a good way.
Julian Ronnie (Tom) showed off a ton of spunk into what he did here acting like a happy type who enjoys life and jumps into the action a great deal by what he does. Knew on how to be alert on things and showing some great energy as he stood out the most in his role. Plus does well acting out of it in a scene and then acting wicked which shines off greatly too.
(Carol) brings her charm pretty good and seemed to have a nice hyped up voice in her speaking as well as acting excited about stuff which looked fairly convicing. She was another one with an effective supposrting role and had the right looks too. Plus seemed to do okay when possessed into a ghoul by acting creepy.

Hand is chopped off
Arms and legs are chopped off as well as being shot with goo revealed
Head is blown into powder

Nick Magnus did a wonderful job with his creepy composing for a cheesy low budget horror such as this one. He had alot of adventureous piano playing as at times it sounds perfectly fast along with wavy sounding synthesizer music that stands out in your mind pretty good. Plus there's deep gloomy bonging sounds during a scene in a cellar which gave me the chills and worked effectively. Also in other parts of the films during the ghoulish scene's we hear some old fashioned horror organ music as this wasn't too shabby for the scene's we saw in this film too. Most of this seemed to work for a film of the 80's.