Directed by Jamie Blanks [Other horror films: Valentine (2001), Storm Warning (2007), Long Weekend (2008)]
In many ways, while still a fun film, this late 90’s slasher feels rather neutered at times. I still like it, and it’s probably one of my favorite late 90’s post-Scream slashers, but still, Urban Legend just felt lacking at times.
First off, though, I have to say that the opening scene has long been a favorite of mine. The gas station attendant trying to shout, “There’s someone in the backseat” just always gave me chills. It was a solid way to open this film. Sadly, much of it can’t maintain that level of pure tension.
The story overall is pretty fun. I just wish that it had been more gory over stylistic, because it really felt like it was pulling it’s punches. Plenty of opportunities for gore, but very little delivery.
The cast was pretty damn good, though. Alicia Witt was decent enough, but Jared Leto (most well-known, to me, anyways, as the lead singer of 30 Seconds to Mars) has always been rather enjoyable in this. Rebecca Gayheart is rather animated (which comes with it’s pros and cons), and Loretta Devine’s character is really fun. Lastly, two great side-characters include Robert Englund (playing a college professor) and John Neville, the college dean (Neville’s most known to me from 1965’s A Study in Terror and The X-Files series), who add good flavor to the film.
Like I said, though, the lack of gore is pretty noticeable here, and it’s rather disappointing that 80’s slashers have more to offer than slashers from the late 90’s. Still, this is one of the post-Scream slashers worth watching, even if it isn’t amazing.