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Night School

3.8 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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(Nov 02, 2011)
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Editorial Reviews

They work by day, take a full schedule of classes all night and somehow find time for study and an occasional date. Women in the evening curriculum at Boston's distinguished Wendell College do a lot to get ahead in life. But there's someone who will go to even greater heights. Someone will do anything to get a head. A killer whose m.o. is the ritualistic decapitation of victims makes terror a required course at Night School, directed by Kenneth Hughes (Casino Royale) and starring Rachel Ward (The Thorn Birds; After Dark, My Sweet) in her screen debut. Leonard Mann plays the homicide lieutenant assigned to the puzzling case. He has hunches, not clues. Suspects, not evidence. And a rising body count. Finals are coming early this year at Wendell. And for those who don't make the grade, heads will roll.

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Special Features

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Product Details

  • Actors: Rachel Ward, Drew Snyder, Joseph R. Sicari Leonard Mann
  • Directors: Ken Hughes
  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    R
    Restricted
  • Studio: Warner Archive
  • DVD Release Date: November 2, 2011
  • Run Time: 89 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B005UZNC78
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #64,306 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
What a surprise this is a video nasty. I'm pretty sure this isn't the uncut version, if there is one, but it's still worth seeing this DVD for a good transfer. A lot of heads get cut off in this movie, but it's too bad you don't see it actually happen (hence the issue of being uncut or not) but everything else happening in the movie is engaging to watch, especially for a guy who's scraping the barrel trying to find new old school slasher flicks to enjoy. I honestly enjoyed watching this movie and hope an even better version comes out with all the juicy scenes intact.

Also, a good scene in this movie involves beef stew and the search for a severed head. Enough said!
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Format: VHS Tape
[good things]

Rachel Ward is definitely the bright spot of this movie, regardless if we get to see her naked or not, her shower scene really makes the movie watch able, at least up to that point. The director (Ken Hughes) really does a good job, making a marginally good movie out of a dull, lifeless script. The movie has it's fair share of it's Red Herrings, twists and turns. The premise of this movie is great. A school killer, killing students by removing their heads. Sounds good, right? Well, let's say that the script did not carry the story out to it's full potential.

[the bad]

The movie was flat out-- flat. The direction took the movie and made it watchable, but where's the blood? It's a slasher movie. The killer is decapitating it's victims, sounds like it would be bloody right? Even though the story wasn't at all horrible, I just could not get into the whole "professor sleeping with his students" sub-plot. The movie didn't feel like a slasher. So much could have come from this movie if there was more blood, or at least bloodier kills. I am a huge fan of blood, and this movie did not satisfy my craving for it.

[final thoughts]

One of the lost slashers of the early 1980's. Probably a movie that will never see a home on DVD either. The movie isn't bad, but it really has no UMPH... it has nothing to carry the movie except beautiful women, who really don't show anything. Hopefully if the movie is someday released on DVD, a uncut version of this will be released. Until then, the movie is a snoozer and should be left for one of those Sundays to play in the background while you're doing homework.
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Format: DVD
Anne Barron (Meb Boden) is a teacher's aide at the Jack-N-Jill Daycare Center in Boston. It's the early evening and the last child has been picked up by her mother. Anne is relaxing on the playground carousel when someone pulls up on a motorcycle, wearing a pink helmut. Anne is startled. Suddenly the stranger pulls out a machete and starts spinning the carousel. The machete is held up in the air and the terrified woman goes around and around - until she's struck with it.

Judd Austin (Leonard Mann) is the cop assigned to the case. He is called to the scene and when he gets there, he sees a gruesome sight. The girl was decapitated and her head was put in a bucket of water nearby. The distraught director of the center tells the officer that Anne worked there during the day - and was attending night classes at Wendell College. At the hospital, Judd and his partner Taj (Joseph R. Sicari) discuss a similar case from the previous week. Another girl was found decapitated and her head was dumped in a pond. They wonder if there's any connection between the two murders.

"Night School" is a typical run-of-the-mill early 80's whodunit slasher with a decapitation twist. This is the kind of movie where half of the money is trying to figure out where the detectives are going to find the missing heads. The twist ending is pretty predictable and the acting is a bit wooden (Rachel Ward, in her film debut, is all sorts of terrible here) but the film is never boring and has been directed with style. Boston looks positively wretched on film here and it gives the slasher a bit of a grungy "Departed" vibe. Overall, it's definitely worth checking out, just check your expectations-and your head--at the door. 3.25 out of 5 stars
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I am giving this DVD release of NIGHT SCHOOL high marks because it includes the theatrical trailer and it is one of the best trailers ever cut for a horror film. It is incredible! It made me want to see the movie again after I just watched it! The film itself is fairly well made. Giallo inspired, it contains interesting kill sequences and the stunning Rachel Ward stars but it doesn't come close to the brilliance of the trailer.
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Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
The title NIGHT SCHOOL is more than just a little misleading, which is very sad cause the school we're talking about is an all girl's night school! Yea! Nudity City here we come! (sigh) Once again I let my imagination run free and once again I'm disappointed with reality. There is no nudity here. There's barely any horror, definitely not enough for this movie to be categorized as a "horror" movie. It's more like a police drama with a few slasher scenes thrown in.

Some of the women attending or working around Wendell College have been turning up with their heads chopped off and it's up to Remington Steele, uh I mean, some cop who's name I forgot to solve the mystery. And solve it he does cause there's really only two suspects.

No nudity, little blood, no gore, no suspense. There's not a lot going for this movie. Slasher completists like myself, have no choice but to watch this film everybody else would be better off watching SCHOOL'S OUT...I never thought I'd hear myself say that!
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