Bad Girls From Valley High is a movie that was shot in 2000 but never saw the light of day until now. Re-titled from A Fate Totally Worse Than Death, it’s based on a teen horror/comedy novel for the 14-17 demographic by Newbery Medal winning author Paul Fleischman. The absurdly funny and supernatural teen-friendly book was refashioned into an R-rated movie that’s reminiscent of Jawbreaker, I Was a Teenage Faust, Thinner, and The Witches of Eastwick.
While the comedy plays rather awkwardly for the most part, the movie actually offers up a few laughs and is more entertaining than some other horror spoofs I can think of (Scary Movie 3 comes to mind… banish the thought!).
The story follows physically flawless Danielle (Julie Benz, of Satan's School for Girls), thoroughly thickheaded Tiffany (Nicole Bilderback, of Cruel World) and their unlikely third wheel, Brook (Monica Keena, of Freddy Vs. Jason). The trio call their little clique the "Huns" proving their ruthless nature by secretly murdering non-Hun Charity Chase (Tanja Reichert, of Club Dread) for having designs on hunky Drew (Jonathan Brandis, who unfortunately passed away last year), Danielle’s object of desire.
Enter a mysterious exchange student — a buxom beauty from Romania, Katarina (Suzanna Urszuly, of Drop Dead Sexy) who shows up at the school one year to the day of Charity’s still-unsolved death. She even has Charity’s locker, and eventually, Drew. The Huns’ claws come out, but then some very bad things start to happen to them. Things bad enough to suspect an evil gypsy curse that could cost them their lives. Who is Katarina, anyway? Is she Charity’s avenger… or is she Charity herself, resurrected as a hot Romanian exchange student out for blood?
These questions and more are answered as this absurd but entertaining story of horror and broad comedy unfold. Look for lots of pratfalls from Christopher Lloyd, who plays the Wile E. Coyote role as a suspicious teacher at the high school, and for a pivotal turn from the late horror legend Janet Leigh as an elderly stroke victim in a rest home who is not as helpless as she appears.
Reviewed by Staci Layne Wilson