Monday, February 23, 2009

Please don't kill the librarian.

Movie commentary for Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon.

In this movie, the killer deconstructs the nature of the slasher flick. There are rules that serial killers follow and this "documentary" explains them while analyzing and even participating in the murders. I can't explain it without ruining the fun, but if you like Friday the Halloween on Elm Street type movies, then you should enjoy this.

But one of the killer rules is that the first murder should take advantage of a relationship the heroine has with a peripheral character. Like a homeless person she talks to when she volunteers at the local shelter, or in the case of Leslie Vernon, the school librarian.

[from the screenplay]

As fyi, Old Eugene is a retired serial killer brainstorming ideas with Leslie. Freddie, Jason and Michael are who you think they are, but they don't appear in the film, just in this version of the screenplay (their lines are delivered by others in the film).

As the sun sets, they grill burgers and dogs at Eugene's place. They discuss the next step Leslie needs to take in his endeavor, an event known as the "red herring."
You got it all worked out?
I think so. She spends a lot of time at the library. I was gonna throw it down there.
She friendly with a janitor or somebody like that?
I was thinking about knocking off one of her friends.
[All immediately frown on the idea.]
I don't know, you don't want to burn that one too early. Turns up the heat pretty quick.
I agree, I think it's too soon. There's nobody else available?
Some homeless guy she talks to on the way? Something like that?
How about one of the librarians? If she spends a lot of time there, she probably knows a few of them.
That's a good idea right there, Les.
Actually, there is a lady who lets her stay late sometimes.
Jackpot. That's your winner.
Plus, those old ladies ain't exactly the most nimble, know what I mean?
So this is what we learned from this scene:

Do NOT befriend the campus nerd.

Do NOT stay after hours to let her scan the arcane histories of the local area. She is not going to discover some long lost artifact. She is only going to get you killed.

But if you are in the library when the slasher attacks, DO duck when you see the nerd turn white and point to something behind you. Do NOT stand still and say, "Why honey child, you look like you have just seen a frightful sight." Especially if you are a man.

Duck, dodge left, and haul ass from the building, as fast as your pale, pudgy librarian legs will carry you. No, you don't need your shawl. Especially if you are a man.