I'll Always Know What You Did Last Summer (2006)
By: Craig Villinger on November 2, 2006  |  Comments  |  Bookmark and Share
Sony (Australia). Region 2, 4, 5, PAL. 1.78:1 English DD 5.1, French DD 5.1, Italian DD 5.1 English, English FTHI, French, Italian, Dutch, Arabic, Hindi Subtitles. 88 minutes
The Movie
Director: Sylvain White
Starring: Brooke Nevin, Ben Easter, Torrey DeVitto, David Paetkau, Seth Packard
Screenplay: Michael D. Weiss
Music: Justin Caine Burnett
Tagline: What He Knows, Might Kill You
Country: USA
I Know What You Did Last Summer was a great movie, but it had a really long title. After that we had I Still Know What You Did Last Summer. This was not a great movie, and to make matters worse, it had a longer title. And now, almost ten years after the release of the wordy original we have I'll Always Know What You Did Last Summer which is not a great movie either, and it has an even longer (and stupider) title! So many words. Seriously, my fingers are already aching, and I haven't even finished typing the introductory paragraph yet. This is going to be a tough review folks…

It's a new summer, and with Jennifer Love Hewitt and Freddy Prinze Jr. not returning for thirds we've got a whole new bunch of fresh faced teenagers who are just itching to see the inside of a body bag. This new bunch of youngsters are situated in craggy Colorado, far away from the events of the first film, where "The Fisherman who kills teenagers with a hook" has become an urban legend, talked about around bonfires and such by people who don't have anything better to do. The core four of this particular tale – Amber (the final girl), Colby (the arsehole jock), Zoe (the final girl's best friend), and Roger (the guy we don't know much about since he will be among the first to die) - obviously have nothing better to do as the film opens with them trying to add some spice to a dull Fourth of July celebration by staging a bogus "Fisherman attack" sequence at the local carnival, which promises much laugher but ends in tears as the Sheriff's son is accidentally killed while playing his part in the prank. Oops. Since the members of the group all have so much potential and don't want to see their lives ruined, they make a pact to keep their ruse a secret; choosing instead to let everyone in town think that The Fisherman really did show up and attack them at the carnival. Selfish little shits!

One year later, and our promising teens have become a bunch of sorry looking individuals thanks to their collective secret. Relationships have ended, career prospects have gone down the shitter, and in some cases personal hygiene has been thrown right out the window… but at least nobody knows the truth, right? Wrong! As the anniversary of the prank gone wrong approaches the final girl receives a text message which reads… brace yourself…"I Know What You Did Last Summer", and eventually, after the obligatory round of finger pointing and in-fighting, a killer shows up in his Fisherman's finest and begins slashing people with a hook.

I'll Always Know What You Did Last Summer (owww… the pain) seems more like a remake than a sequel, although it's nowhere near as entertaining as the Kevin Williamson penned original it tries so hard to imitate, and was probably made for about a tenth of the budget. The young cast certainly does their best to keep things entertaining – no doubt hoping a role in a name horror franchise will lead to bigger and better things – but since they were forced to work from a piss-poor and completely un-original script by the guy who wrote Octopus, Octopus 2, and Tobe Hooper's Crocodile their efforts amount to little. Seriously, what were they expecting? Workmanlike direction from Sylvain White – who apparently has a background in music video but shows no real directorial flair here – doesn't help either. The guy actually seems to be a talented filmmaker, and I'll Always Know What You Did Last Summer is not an incompetently made film by any stretch; it just seems as though horror is not the guy's forte. Perhaps like the cast members he was simply hoping this would lead to better gigs.

Even the most mundane slasher film can be redeemed by a few good killings, but unfortunately I'll Always Know What You Did Last Summer doesn't even manage to kill off its cardboard characters in style. We are forced to wait more than forty minutes for the first slaying (not counting the opening accident), and when the body count does eventually start to tick over the kill scenes are staged without any noticeable enthusiasm, and are not very gory. The only thing I enjoyed about these kill scenes was the knowledge that I was one dead character closer to seeing the end credits roll, which did offer some consolation.

Watching this third instalment makes me think I Still Know What You Did Last Summer actually wasn't as bad as I'd first thought. After all, it did have slick Hollywood production values, competent gore effects, and genre legend Jeffrey Combs, not to mention several moments that were so bad you could actually laugh and poke fun at them (like Jack Black as the pot smoking wannabe Jamaican). Unfortunately I'll Always Know What You Did Last Summer (I can't take much more…) is not the sort of bad film you can laugh at; it's the sort of bad film that makes you wish you were doing something else. Anything else in fact. Although, having said all that the final act does manage to deliver one positive when the killer's identity is finally revealed. After sifting through the red herrings and seeing potential suspects fall by the wayside it's a satisfyingly kooky twist which creates an all new mythos and sets up the next Jason Voorhees/Michael Myers style killing machine, although on the downside this new twist provides a plausible excuse for an infinite number of sequels, so brace yourself for even more crap direct-to-DVD instalments if this one manages to return a profit.
Made for the home video market, I'll Always Know What You Did Last Summer comes in the widescreen TV friendly 1.78:1 aspect ratio and is 16:9 enhanced. Since the film was obviously shot on the cheap we aren't treated to a spectacular transfer, although what we see on screen isn't open to a lot of criticism. The image is a little soft and occasionally grainy, with darker moments in particular looking less than pristine. Colours also look over saturated during several scenes, particularly outdoor moments in bright sunlight, but this was probably a stylistic choice rather than an authoring fault.
While the film has been given a 5.1 sound mix, for the most part your rear speakers won't be required as the activity is confined mostly to the front of the sound stage. It's far from spectacular, but dialogue, music, and sound effects are all reproduced cleanly.
Extra Features
A bland 25 minute making of is provided which features the usual cast and crew interviews combined with a lot of on-set footage which shows the actors fooling around and having a lot of fun. Director Sylvain White also chips in with an audio commentary, and while he is well spoken and never pauses for more than a few seconds, I just found the whole talk-through slightly dull. I attribute some of this dullness to the fact that I was opposed to sitting through the film for a second time and probably wasn't paying a lot of attention. Trailers for Population 436, The Net 2.0, Fear Itself: Dark Memories, When a Stranger Calls (2006), and Ultraviolet are also provided.
The Verdict
Despite a reasonable attempt from all involved (well, except maybe the screenwriter) I'll Always Know What You Did Last Summer is nothing more than a cheap and inferior sequel, and if you support this release Sony will churn out even more instalments with even longer titles like I'll Always Know What You Did Last Summer Times Infinity Plus One, so please don't encourage them.
Movie Score
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