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Ghost Canyon

'Happy Birthday To Me - Retro VHS Look'
(Melissa Sue Anderson, Glenn Ford, Lawrence Dane, et al / Blu-ray / R / (1981) 2018 / Mill Creek Entertainment)

Overview: At the snobby Crawford Academy, Virginia's group of friends start to go missing years after horrible events that happened to her as a child around her birthday.

Blu-ray Verdict: Virginia Wainwright (Melissa sue Anderson) belongs to an elite clique known as "the top ten" at prestigious Crawford academy.

With membership to this club you get a the opportunity to be assassinated by a faceless gloved psychopath. Watching your friends being picked off one by one in increasingly bizarre ways is traumatic enough, but poor Ginnie is is still processing the tragic drawbridge death of her trampy mother while being bombarded by memories of her horrific experimental brain surgery.

I just love these holiday themed Slashers 'Happy Birthday To Me' is a whodunit in the classic 'And Then There Were None' mold injected with a heaping helping of gore and an atypical mostly male victim roster.

Is Virginia herself committing the atrocities during her conveniently timed blackouts? As the suspects dwindle it becomes increasingly likely but thanks to one of the most implausible twists in horror history, you haven't a chance of guessing the jaw-dropping finale.

Sporting an impressive pedigree that includes director J.Lee Thompson (the original 'Cape Fear') and co-staring legendary actor Glenn Ford, HBTM is a classy affair when compared to the backyard titles of the era.

But don't let the high production values and professional presentation fool you. Producers John Dunning and Andre Link are also responsible for the classic MPAA baiting slashathon 'My Bloody Valentine' and have a clear understanding of what ticket buyers were paying to see circa 1981.

Namely, eye popping, show stopping murders performed with tools raging from the standard hunting knife to the now infamous shish kebab skewer that dominates the theatrical poster.

All in all 'Happy Birthday To Me' is definitely a party to remember, you certainly get a slice of excellent eighties style horror even though some people hate the final twist at the end, I personally loved it!

Oh, and the party scene at the end was delightfully grotesque and definitely not to be missed either! This is a Widescreen presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.