Directed by Christopher Leitch [Other horror films: I’ve Been Waiting for You (1998), Secrets in the Walls (2010)]
This television movie is a remake of a 1973 television movie of the same name. In fact, the Dean of the college in this movie is played by Kate Jackson, who played a girl in the original version. I’m suspecting, by-and-large, that the only reason they chose to remake a Satanic 70’s television movie was due to the moderate then-recent success of The Craft (which came out in 1996). I’ve not seen the 70’s movie myself, so I can’t compare them, but I can attest to my feelings that this one is sort of fun.
Now, make no mistake – this is not a good movie. But perhaps due to the lower-quality (if you’ve seen one early 2000’s television movie, you know what I’m talking about), or the utter silliness of some of the special effects (wolves turning into humans, killer lightning bolts striking and lighting girls on fire, and crows/ravens with glowing red eyes), I found that Satan’s School for Girls has some charm.
The cast was okay for a television production. Shannen Doherty did fine as the main character, I guess. I sort of got the sense her heart wasn’t in the movie, but given what the movie is, I think that is moderately forgivable. Daniel Cosgrove (who has appeared frequently in soap operas in the past) played his character a bit generically, but still had a surprise up his sleeves. The aforementioned Kate Jackson did decently well until the end, when she had to deliver some rather cheesy dialogue during the *cue dramatic music* ultimate showdown.
Perhaps my favorite actor was Richard Joseph Paul, who played a sleazy college professor. I mean, this guy dated multiple students (in an all-girl school), and more so, did it openly. He would literally go to parties the students throw and show up with his student squeeze, not even trying to hide it. Paul’s character was a hoot and a half, and if you watch this movie, keep your eye on him, because he’s good fun.
Many aspects of this movie aren’t great. The music is exceptionally weak, the special effects were horrendous (as you’d expect from most TV movies), and very little suspense is ever really felt. Still, though I’ve seen this movie before (I suspect it’s been at least ten years), a few things caught me pleasantly by surprise, and a twist or two took me for a ride. Nothing spectacular, but when I finally figured out where the movie was going (a testament to how much I remembered about it), I thought to myself, “Damn, that’s cool.”
This remake is a goofy, cheesy movie. The epilogue was laugh-your-ass-off awful. But it still had some charm to it, so while I definitely think it’s a bit below average, I do think it’s close. Satan’s School for Girls is far from perfect, but damn it, I still had fun. Take that to the bank.