Class Reunion Reviews
I guess this may have felt like a rehash of 'Animal House' without Belushi. The plot is merely a spoof on slasher horror films, a high school reunion in progress within an old dusty crumbling school is halted when one of the former pupils goes on a murderous rampage. This student being the butt of a practical joke years ago back in high school by his classmates which mentally scared him.
The main issue is there really isn't any murdering going on in the film. There's one kill I think, then the rest of the film is made up of the rest trying to find the killer. The sets and atmosphere aren't that bad I found, it looks like your typical cheesy haunted house affair with dark cobweb ridden corridors and classrooms. The humour is as you would expect from this franchise, its stupid, obvious, predictable and childish, but it serves the spooky quite genre well I suppose.
The cast are all pretty obscure, a few recognisable faces but in general no one that can match Belushi and co. All the characters are rather dull really, nothing very funny about any of them accept for Gerrit Graham's character who is a cowardly pompous stuck up rich boy (stereotyping at its best naturally).
I didn't think this was too bad in all honesty, its still miles better than all the modern equivalents such as the 'Scary Movie' franchise which takes its cue from this I'm sure. Its hammy as hell but lets remember this was made in 81, at that time all these jokes and setups were new. I suppose if you liked 'Clue' then you may like this silly horror comedy, not really much horror though.
National Lampoon's Class Reunion has a good feel to it because it takes place within a simple small scale setting and has a consistent comedic feel which comes with its collection of goofy characters which makes the mood of the slasher element lighter.
But when the slasher elements kick inm the film just goes downhill, and the once promising comedic premise is turned into a repetitive series of stale gags with little comedic success. And the slasher elements aren't intense or funny either, so at best National Lampoon's Class Reunion proves to be an ambitious but utterly failed attempt to combine slasher and spoof elements into a single film by John Hughes who clearly had not flourished his writing genius just yet since he forked over a screenplay which melts over the course of the film and falters under the handling of inexperienced director Michael Miller. Have you ever heard of him? Didn't think so. Here is the reason why.
National Lampoon's Class Reunion does show potential for John Hughes but doesn't show him at his best in the slightest, because while few of the jokes will supply laughs in the first part of the film, there isn't nearly enough over the course of the film since all it does is repeat a few basic jokes again and again for 84 minutes which makes it seem significantly longer than it actually is.
Essentially, National Lampoon's Class Reunion is a failure. Its ambitious, it shows John Hughes' potential as a writer and has a few laughs, but overall its just lacking in laughs, thrills or any comprehensive minds that could have been used to combine the elements together into something better instead of what it ended up becoming.