July 2, 2014

VOD Review: All Cheerleaders Die (2014)

If Lucky McKee has shown us anything as a director, it's that he has a talent for making solid Horror flicks that are centered around some pretty twisted women.

The titular character in his first feature-length movie, May, is so lonely and socially retarded that she makes a "friend" for herself out of people's body parts.

In the Masters of Horror episode Sick Girl, the main character, Ida, is a lonely entomologist who ends up being inseminated by one of her beloved bugs.

The Woods features a bunch of crazy bitches Witches that try to possess the bodies of their students to escape a curse.

In The Woman, which is arguably McKee's best and most twisted movie, we have a feral cannibal chick who is captured by a "normal" family, and is forced to get medieval on their asses after they torture and rape her.

Unbalanced women, useless or evil men, lesbianism, liberal amounts of gore, and Angela Bettis: these are the things that make up the typical Lucky McKee film. All of those elements are present in All Cheerleaders Die (save for Angela Bettis), and in an interesting twist are played more for laughs and the sake of fun than they are shock and Horror.

Oh yeah, and sorry for the lengthy rant in the Downright Horrendous section...  I just had to vent.

Maddy is a plain and ordinary girl who used to be BFF's with Alexis, the super-popular queen bitch of the cheerleading team. When Alexis dies while trying to execute the forbidden "Fountain of Troy" maneuver, Maddy is like sad and stuff. Her sadness soon turns to rage though when she finds Alexis' jock boyfriend hooking up with Tracy, another dancer gone retarded cheerleader, and she vows revenge!

Sweater monkeys.
Maddy tries out for the cheerleading team, hoping to infiltrate their ranks and make some sort of embarrassing video of them, thus ruining Tracy and Jocko's lives. She seduces Tracy, convinces her to break up with Jocko, and causes all sorts of righteous mayhem. Alexis would be proud.

Yes, her lips move when she thinks.
Maddy's plan is going great until she and her new cheermates all die in a horrible car crash, which is caused by Jocko and his mouth-breathing crew of jocks. Lucky for the girls that Maddy's ex-girlfriend is a Witch or something, and she uses a bag full of glowing rock candy to bring them all back to life. Of course that makes the basically zombies now, which means that they have to feed...

Wet, glowing, rock candy.
Will the newly resurrected cheerleaders get revenge on their murdering classmates? Will the movie end on a cliffhanger that basically leaves you feeling screwed unless their ends up being a part 2? Is Lucky McKee a closeted, male-identified lesbian? Far be it from us to spoil anything for you here, but suffice it to say that there had better be a part 2, because we always need more quality eye candy.

"We are rotting! We, we are rotting!"
In 2001, Lucky McKee and Chris Sivertson made a really low budget movie called All Cheerleaders Die, which was basically a very low budget post-student film. 12 years, and a bunch of career experience later, they decided to get together and remake their own movie.

All Cheerleaders Die is a smart, funny, sexy romp of a Horror flick. It's uneven at times, and its characters could have been fleshed out a bit more, but we didn't really expect a movie called All Cheerleaders Die to be exemplary in the narrative department, now did we? No, we got what we expected from this movie, nothing more, nothing less, and we are pleased. It's actually nice to see the lighter side of Lucky McKee for a change.

The cast did a really good job in this one, especially Caitlin Stasey and Brooke Butler; they're both very capable actresses and they carried this movie really well. We'd be remiss if we didn't also give some credit to Tom Williamson; even though his character grated on our nerves, he made for one hell of a villain.

A fun exercise in excess, that's what this movie is. Essentially.

She has anger issues.
We had a lot of fun will All Cheerleaders Die, but we had to shut our minds off to do so. The plot and characterization in this movie are fairly shallow and uneven, so there's not a lot of depth to be had here. Odd, that, because at times it felt like there was a definite message that McKee was trying to send to his audience, but the fun and fluff of the movie basically buried that message underneath its pretty trappings.

"The fuck you just say to me, Pappy?"
We've come across a few online reviews of All Cheerleaders Die which decry it for being "sexist" and for "objectifying women in a movie that pokes fun at how women are objectified in most Horror films."

I suppose you could level those complaints (amongst others) at this film & at most Horror flicks in general, and you wouldn't be wrong in doing so, but who cares? After all, most Horror movies are all about objectification. I mean aren't 99% of all characters in Horror movies objectified as either villains or victims? Most men in genre films are either creeps, idiots, bland do-gooders, fat oafs, etc... and most of their characters tend to exist only for the sake of body count or plot device. Mostly body count.

And let's not pretend that the guys with the nicest abs and prettiest faces don't get more work than the slovenly or ugly ones do. Shirtless guys are every bit the marketing tool that topless girls are. Twilight anyone? No way does Tyler Lautner have any sort of a career if he was 30 lbs heavier and didn't have abs that made tween girls all wet in the panties. Different demographics, but tools none the less.

Models aren't rich and famous because they're loaded with unique talent, but because they're gorgeous and their beauty sells products. Do you think Justin Beaver would be the regrettable entertainment juggernaut that he is if he weighed 300 lbs and had a cleft pallet? Would Miley Cyrus be the worst role model ever for kids if she didn't use her retarded sexuality as her main only draw? Hell no they wouldn't, and if you say any different, you're full of shit.

People, Patrick. It's people.
So yes, women are usually objectified for their looks in Horror movies, but then again the same goes for any other type of movie, TV Show, print ad, etc... Humanity loves youth and beauty, and sex even more so, because those are the commodities that sell. Women are beautiful creatures, and as much as content creators like to exploit them, audiences love to see them.

I love seeing gorgeous, naked women in movies doing sexy and morally debased things, and you do not get to judge me as a person based on that singular point alone. Appreciation of such things does not define my entire character in the least bit. The same thing goes for filmmakers. Lucky McKee didn't demean women by making this film anymore than we did by watching it.

And for the record, by people leveling these kinds of demeaning criticisms at movies like this, they're also demeaning the women that they think they're sticking up for. The women who star in Horror movies work their asses off, and for someone to take away from their efforts by saying that their presence serves as little more than objectification, is a slap in the face to them as well.

Says the least decorative woman in the picture.
Horror flicks are all about exploiting the senses, and using sensory overload to get a reaction from the audience. Young, sexy people in danger, doing stupid/bad things and paying for their indiscretions with their lives; that's the template, folks. 

My point is that people need to stop bashing artistic efforts because they somehow offend their individual ideals of what is and is not appropriate or acceptable. I mean, they can bash away as much as they would like to, but in the end they're just doing the same type of vilifying that they're bitching about in the first place.

So in short, check your privilege and shut up, you self-important assholes.

Close your dick-sucker, honey. You know I'm right.
There was a decent amount of blood and gore in this one, the best bit of them all being the scene with the bear traps. *We had a great screen shot of that scene, but seeing as how using it here would be a major spoiler, we cast it aside. Dammit.

Yeah, it's blood, dummy.
All Cheerleaders Die is a sexually charged movie, but it's not a particularly gratuitous one. There are plenty of hot girls running around in cheerleading outfits, swimwear, and undies, but only one of them gets naked. There's also some lesbian snogging, but even that is pretty tame.

That's going in her b-hole.
All cheerleaders do die, eventually. Also, sometimes they come back.

Don't give us that look. You knew what this was.
All Cheerleaders Die is a fun, silly, excessive good time, and it doesn't pretend to be anything else. Could it have been better? Sure it could have, but as it stands, it's an above average Teen Terror flick that will most likely entertain most audiences.

If you're looking for a fun, easy watch, then it gets no better than this right now for the $6.99 rental price.

All Cheerleaders Die is available now on VOD, and will hit Blu-ray & DVD on July 22nd.


Caitlin Stasey and Brooke Butler are looking F.I.N.E. fine in this movie. Why they didn't just get naked and show us what they're hiding underneath those cheerleading outfits, I guess we'll never know. I suppose we'll live, but is living with less gratuitous nudity really living? You'll have to decide that for yourselves.

All Cheerleaders Die is full of all sorts of eye candy, so click the link at the bottom to see more of the movie's lovely lasses!



  1. Watching this movie made me feel old. Yeah, I'm not 20 anymore and this movie made me being wide aware of this fact. I wish there would have been less clich├ęs used. I'm not regretting having watched it but I can't see me watching it again. Me, I'm not holding my breath till the sequel is available.

  2. When will the sequel be available? I loved this movie and can't wait to see more!!!