The summer between my freshman and sophomore year of high school, Friday the 13th Part 3 played on HBO on heavy repeat. I watched it every time I could, cementing my love not only for horror but making the slasher film my genre of choice. That Matt Frame’s frequently ridiculous yet often inventive Camp Death III in 2D plays specific homage to that sequel does my slowly rotting heart well.
After convincing his foul mouthed, extremely abrasive uncle to reopen his beleaguered campground as a summer oasis for the physically and mentally handicapped, the eager Todd Boogjumper soon finds his livelihood in jeopardy. Both staff and guests begin meeting their ends in sadistic ways and even his traumatized yet supportive girlfriend Rachel may not be able to help him survive.
Of course, the plot points here play out with sophomoric and excessive humor which is met enthusiastically by Frame’s truly talented cast. The characters do begin to slightly wear out their welcome, consisting more of tics and over the top comedic notions than depth (much like the participants in the Scary Movie series and their ilk), but Frame does surprise with creative chase scenes, unexpected denouements and a sense of professionalism and skill that many independent, low budget horror films lack.
Of the cast, Darren Andrichuk belligerently attacks Mel, the aforementioned crusty patriarch, with something bordering on compulsive charm. His foul mouthed tirades such as “Fork fuck my ruby red asshole” are almost astounding in their frequency and originality, providing some of the film’s happiest moments. Meanwhile, Angela Galanopoulos and Dave Peniuk utilize an energetic charm to enliven Rachel and Todd. But it is Chris Allen as Barry, the often bombarded wheelchair bound counselor, who is sure to steal most viewers’ hearts with his honest enthusiasm and refusal to be anything but perky even when Andrichuk’s Mel becomes physically abusive with him. Caroe Sandoval as Mel’s frustrated wife and Katharine Alpa as the most spastically animated of the campers also steal the screen whenever they appear and one wishes, especially in Alpa’s case, that their characters had commanded more plot time.
Naturally, Frame throws in many references to Friday 3 with Rachel’s frequent mentions of a past trauma nicely mirroring the ordeal that Dana Kimmell’s Chris anguishes over in the original. Thoughts of Sleepaway Camp and (even) Scream may enter into the audience’s terror worshipping minds, as well.
Of course, the forthright Mel would have obliterated any of this reviewer’s points with a loud “Fuck your sharing, you fuck-nut asshole!” So, it may be best for you to decide for yourself at https://www.facebook.com/campdeath/.
Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!