Shriek If You Know What I Did Last Friday the Thirteenth (2000)

Shriek If You Know What I Did Last Friday the Thirteenth (2000)

A news reporter begins to investigate when a group of really dumb teenagers are stalked by a really dumb killer.

 

That’s the best I can do with the plot summary in all honesty. Shriek If You Know What I Did Last Friday the Thirteenth is less of a structured narrative and more of a series of skits spoofing other films. 2000 was the year of the dumb comedy spoof and between this and Scary Movie, I think pretty much every base of Scream has been spoofed.

First of all let me just say that this was written before Scary Movie so any accusations of it being a rip-off are just dumbfounded. It was just that Scary Movie got rushed out quicker and this had to settle for a straight-to-video release. But as far as the two films go, Shriek If You Know What I Did Last Friday the Thirteenth is far superior. This parody is more akin to the Airplane! and The Naked Gun style of doing gags and doesn’t rely on cheap bodily fluid and gay jokes every minute like it’s cruder cinematic counterpart did.

Yes there are some bodily fluid jokes in this (what do you expect, this is the 00s after all) but you probably get more of these jokes in the first twenty minutes of Scary Movie than you do in the whole of this film. Shriek If You Know What I Did Last Friday the Thirteenth doesn’t repeatedly stoop to that cheap levels of gags and is far funnier for it. Well I say far funnier – this is not the film to watch if you need an urgent medicinal lift of laughter. A lot of gags are fired out: some hit, most don’t. There are lots of visual gags going on in the background when the characters are talking and it will take more than one viewing to see them all (ala The Naked Gun). Some highlights include a great rip on MTV’s Pop-Up Video programme (aptly named “Chop-Up Video”) and a throwaway scene with a little ginger-haired kid called “Chucky.” Some gags are just throwaway and over too soon but others come from the ‘Will Ferrell School of Comedy’ when they don’t know when to stop.

See if you can spot the parodies of other films. American Pie, Reservoir Dogs, There’s Something About Mary, Christine, Pulp Fiction, Grease, I Know What You Did Last Summer and of course, Scream are all given the treatment. Unfortunately, the film does delve a little too far back into film history to find stuff to spoof for my liking and this seems to date a lot of the jokes more badly than they deserved to be. After all, these pop culture spoofs are only relevant to their time of release. Who will get the jokes (assuming there are any) in the likes of Scary Movie, Superhero Movie, Meet the Spartans, etc in ten, twenty or thirty years time after the culture that they’re ripping on has changed with time? Some of the pop culture references go over people’s heads now as it is – I’d hate to think what they’d be like in the future.

I’m not really bothered too much about the actors who turn up in these films although Coolio is a definite turn-off in the “Artist Formerly Known as Principal” role. And what the hell happened to Tiffany-Amber Thiessen? She was one of the hottest things on TV and, for a generation of young males like me, watching Saved By The Bell was essential viewing back in the early 90s.

 

If you prefer your humour very low and cheap like the Wayan Brothers or Tom Green (you know who you are people) then you will detest this. If you like your humour more tasteful and more subtle, then Shriek If You Know What I Did Last Friday the Thirteenth is the choice for you. Neither spoof is particularly funny but this one is the more classy offering.

 

 ★★★★☆☆☆☆☆☆ 

 

 

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