How I Spent My Summer Vacation
posted by B on 2/26/01
At a time when your whole life is ahead of you, you could make a mistake that changes your future ... even shortens it! In a small seaside village, four friends (Jennifer Love Hewitt, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillippe and Freddie Prinze, Jr.) experience a fate someone else knows, and makes sure none of them can forget. That they are all horrible human beings, who should be making my rodeo cheeseburger with extra Bullseye barbecue sauce at the God damned Burger King instead of starring in a major motion picture. Or, hitting somebody in a car and, subsequently, getting stabbed in the face with a hook.
"I Know What You Did Last Summer" is an adaptation of Lois Duncan's horror/thriller novel about four teenagers trying to cover up a hit-and-run that is popular with 8th graders across the country, which was an adaptation of "Chain Letter" by Christopher Pike, a horror/thriller novel about four teenagers trying to cover up a hit-and-run that is popular with 4th graders. Jennifer Love Hewitt somehow keeps her breasts from tearing through her shirt and flying into oncoming traffic long enough to play Julie, a high school senior who goes on a trip with her friends during the 4th of July. The four teens are drinking and fooling around when they accidentally hit a fisherman on a road called Reaper's Curve, which is somewhere on DEATH Mountain in DEATH Valley between Highway 666 and Chronic Nasal Drip Boulevard. They try to cover up the accident by dumping his body into the ocean. But a year later they get a strange letter that says "I know what you did last summer."
The fisherman's name was Ben, my favorite fictional character in the history of motion pictures. Why, you ask, would I choose a fictional fisherman who doesn't even sell fishsticks or those little orange goldfish?
Released in 1998, "I Know What You Did Last Summer" climbed from the festering stank pool and fish hooked it's way into the hearts of impressionable preteens across the country. Having bad dialogue, a bad script, and bad acting should've ended the film's legacy on the shelf at Blockbuster between "Jakob the Liar" and "Treehouse Hostage" starring the FAR, FAR TOO LATE Jim Varney. Not bloody likely.
Julie James (Hewitt, now sporting an even pointier face than before) hasn't been the same since last summer (1998). Still harboring guilt over her role in the death of a fisherman, her college grades have slipped and her relationship with high school sweetheart Ray Bronson (played with all the zest of Corky Thatcher by WD Patron Saint Freddie Prinze Jr.) is on the rocks. Julie's classmate Will Benson (who doesn't have the same last name as the fisherman she killed...no, really, he doesn't...stop looking at his last name! SHHH!!) would like to ease Julie's pain, but she is hesitant to trust him or anyone else.
One reason she can't trust anyone else is because she keeps seeing the fisherman in her imagination, wherever she goes. When she's in a club, we (the kicking, screaming audience) see the fisherman behind her...only she whips around to see nothing there! It was only her imagination. Don't ask me why everything she imagines is behind her. Hopefully one day she'll imagine me and a family sized bottle of vegetable oil, but I digress.
Julie's spunky best friend Karla Wilson (played by Brandy) is evidently some sort of chameleon, because she's got one eye on each side of her head. I'm serious, you could write out the Declaration of Independence in calligraphy between Brandy's eyes. Anyway, she wins an all-expense paid trip for four to the Bahamas, and wants to go because her Dad is a SUPER HUGE DICK about EVERYTHING. Swear to God, if he catches Moesha looking at a picture of a picture of a boy he beats her with a chainsaw. Karla invites her main squeeze, Tyrell Martin (played by "Generic Sassy Black Guy"), while Julie settles for Will's company after being rejected by Ray. The moment they hit the picturesque island, havoc ensues. Their romantic getaway turns into a vacation of murder and mayhem that soon has Julie and friends running for their lives.
BUT WAIT OMG DON'T FORGET ABOUT RAY! Freddie Prinze Jr. is the thing that makes this movie solid gold. Fred decides that he's been a dick to Jennifer Love, especially after Party of Five got canceled and "Time of Your Life" lasted 14 minutes before disappearing. So he drives to see her and go to the Bahamas with Lizard Brandy...BUT NO! The fisherman STRIKES, injuring Freddie and trying to run him down with a car.
Also, Ray uses an electric toothbrush, but uses it like it's a regular toothbrush. You see, Freddie Prinze Jr.'s dad killed himself because his son was Freddie Prinze Jr.
Freddie Ray's not the only retarded character in this TEEN SCREAM CLASSIC. Oh no, there's the lovely Miss Hewitt herself, proving once and for all that the breast size/brain size ratio stereotype is completely true. While on the island, she opens a closet to reveal a DEAD BODY! What do you do in a situation like that, call the cops? Tell your friends? Leave the island? Of course not.
You get in the sun tan bed! Obviously the first thing you want to do when trying to escape doom IN THE FUCKING BAHAMAS is to artificially tan. And besides, she's trying NOT to die. Those things are lethal! They'll cook you from the inside. Like a SALISBURY STEAK DINNER MOFO. When the killer attacks and locks her in the sun tan bed, Brandy and Not-Son of the Fisherman FRANTICALLY try to free her before she COOKS, instead of breaking the lock or just turning off the bed.
In fact, WHENEVER she imagines that her killer is behind her, she immediately leaves the crowded area to do something by herself, often in the darkness. The best example when she is at the dance club and she sees the killer, and decides to leave the room of say, a hundred and fifty people to go home and take a shower. This isn't your standard horror movie cliche, though, because she's not *realistically* showering...she's standing in weird blue light taking a shower in the middle of the night, when it's raining. You should never take a shower when it's raining, you'll kill yourself.
Right, breasts, I forgot.
The crowning achievement of "I Still Know What You Did Last Summer" is not the obvious inaccuracy of the title (which should've been "I Know What You Did Two Summers Ago" or "Sun Tanning Follies"). It's Titus, played by the fat guy from "High Fidelity," most recently seen on the silver screen breaking the fourth seal by starring alongside Amanda Peet in "Saving Silverman."
Instead of being typecast as the fat, annoying friend, Titus is a fat, annoying RASTAFARIAN who sells drugs to tourists. He can swim underwater with a lit blunt in his mouth. It makes about as much sense as it sounds like.
Titus meets an untimely death, though, when the killer shows up and kills him because the fisherman ROCKS and tries to kill everyone who sucks. In one of the worst special effect sequences I've ever seen, Titus catches a hook in his hand. Easy to simulate in this age of technology, right?
Quick SAT question:
Titus's fingers in that scene are to "realism" as Robert Berry (the independent music producer) is to "talented."
I've seen more realistic special effects when my dog eats aluminum foil and barfs up orange. Also, when Titus has the hook in his hand he pushes his fingers into the table. They go down into the table, which is either made of rubber, or Titus is very strong.
We all live in a world of rubber. Speaking of which...
Jennifer gets off the island fine, and so do Brandy and Freddie Prinze Jr. Essentially, it was a waste of time...which SUCKS, because I thought this movie was gonna ROCK ASS all up and down the avenue.
4. Freddie Prinze Jr.
5. Jennifer Love Hewitt
Three for six, that's horrible. For that, I give "I Still Know What You Did Last Summer" 10 out of zero stars, and hope that it's sequel due next summer ("I Know 3," or "I Still Still Know What You Did, What, Four Summers Ago") is a lot better.
"Valentine" and "Urban Legends: Final Cut" were SO AWESOME and I know that Freddie can do better than this because "Down to You" made me cry OMG I ate ice cream all nite long!!!!!1
If you get a letter in the mail telling you that "I know what you did last summer," strap on your low-cut halter top and head for an island paradise. If you don't see any fat white rastafarians you know you're safe.
Or ARE you?
Much obliged to AMC Dave for the vidcaps. I never would've been able to half-ass this without you! Kudos!