April Fool's Day (1986)
By: J.R. McNamara on September 5, 2005  |  Comments  |  Bookmark and Share
Paramount (Australia). Region 4, PAL. 2.35:1 (16:9 enhanced). English DD 5.1, French DD 2.0, German DD 2.0, Spanish DD 2.0, Italian DD 2.0. English, English (FHI), French, German, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Finnish, Dutch, Italian, Portuguese, Greek, Turkish, Spanish Subtitles. 85 minutes
The Movie
Director: Fred Walton
Starring: Deborah Foreman, Ken Olandt, Thomas F. Wilson,
Amy Steel, Jay Baker
Screenplay: Danilo Bach
Music: Charles Bernstein
Tagline:Childish pranks turn into a bloody battle for survival!
Country: USA
The Eighties, some say this was horror's heyday. The popular psychopaths had their violent ways with hundreds of horny drunken teens, aliens attacked, the dead had their day and the cenobites walked the earth. Yes, the horror fan walked in fields of green and showered in sunshine. Occasionally, though, there were hiccups in the serenity, flies in the gory soup, and this is where we find April Fool's Day.

April Fool's Day starts with the usual college student stereotypes (played by Ken Olandt, Amy Steel, Jay Baker, Deborah Goodrich, Griffin O'neal, Thomas F. Wilson, Leah Pinsent and Clayton Rohner), full of tomfoolery and April Fool's Day hoaxes, waiting to catch the ferry to the secluded island retreat owned by Muffy St John's (Deborah Foreman) family. Muffy, the gorgeous heiress who invited them all has a horrible family secret…and upon arriving on the island, the secret could result in a murderous rampage that will may leave them all dead?

Written by Danilo Bach (Beverly Hills Cop) and directed by Fred Walton (When A Stranger Calls, which he co-wrote), April Fool's Day is the little movie that couldn't and didn't. It tries too hard to stand out in a crowd of slashers and sequels by trying to be cleverer than what it is, mixing too much comedy with not enough tension and ultimately becoming an experiment that failed.

Containing no gore, no tension and no nudity, this film has far too much levity for it ever to be taken seriously by horror afficionados. Amongst the cast of annoying characters is Thomas F. Wilson, taking a break from his Biff Tannen duties, who is surprisingly entertaining and almost raises a smile with his hi-jinks and pranks, but the biggest April's Fools prank is the one played on the viewer, for wasting 85 minutes of their life.

This is an unspectacular, 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer that has no problems but isn't interesting either.
A Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack is accompanied by stereo soundtracks in French, German, Italian and Spanish.
Extra Features


The Verdict
Released as part of Paramount's 90th Anniversary DVD celebrations and given the disrespect it deserves, this bare bones disc is hardly worth the effort.
Movie Score
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