Sorority Row Movie Review

Sorority Row Movie Review
Hell Week Lasts A Whole Year at Theta-Pi
Updated: 09-11-2009
The Theta-Pi sisterhood — kindly Cassidy (Briana Evigan), uppity Jessica (Leah Pipes), sexy Claire (Jamie Chung), brainy Ellie (Rumer Willis), party-gal Chugs (Margo Harshman) and beautiful Megan (Audrina Patridge) — pull a nasty prank which goes horribly wrong. (Do nasty pranks ever go marvelously right?)
Not that they had such a great plan to begin with, but when the meant-to-be-fake rape (to punish Chugs' bad-boy brother Garret [played by Matt O'Leary] for cheating on Megan) escalates into something more, things go from bad to worse. Murdered Megan is left abandoned in a lonely quarry not far from sorority row, and everyone else slips back into to their normal lives. But one year later, on the anniversary of Megan's "disappearance", mysterious and scary things begin to happen to the rattled Theta Pi girls.
After Chugs is brutally choked which in a manner that could only be mayhem, the ladies begin to suspect everyone — Garret gone loco? Megan's grieving sister? An avenging Megan, back from the dead? — including each other. As the nubile, scantily-clad conspirators are picked off one by one, those remaining are forced to band together and face the unknown assailant.
Truth be told, the story is nothing special (although it is a welcome change of pace from the vampires, home invasions, and resurrected 80s horror icons). There are an awful lot of party and dancing and drinking scenes which don't serve the story at all. There could be a little here and there to show other sides to the, er, heroines, but they do tend to drag on and on (and sometimes even in slow-motion, timed to cheesy pop songs destined to date the film).
That's about it on the negatives. On the plus side, Sorority Row gets an A for the dead-on casting,  snarky, biting dialogue, outrageous death scenes, and the brilliant addition of Carrie Fisher as the girls' uber-protective (and of course, doomed) house mother.
While the direction could have been a lot punchier, I must single out and commend the director of photography, Ken Seng. The last thing I saw of his was the blurry, jumpy, crazy shaky-cam fright flick Quarantine, so I didn't know what to expect here — but he does a magnificent job on color, composition, and the warm, grainy, very organic feel to many of the scenes which is reminiscent of vintage late 70s or early 80s heyday horror.
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Reviewed by Staci Layne Wilson
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