Good, Bad & Ugly Review: Detention

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 37% (Critics) / 48% (Audience)
Directed By: Joseph Kahn
Written By: Joseph Kahn and Mark Palermo
Starring: Josh Hutcherson, Shanley Caswell, Spencer Locke and Dane Cook
Studio: IDP Distribution

Synopsis: An apocalyptic fantasy, horror, science fiction, action-thriller, body swapping, time-traveling teen romantic comedy starring Josh Hutcherson, Dane Cook and Shanley Caswell, Detention follows the local students of Grizzly Lake as they survive their final year of high school. Bringing even more angst to student life, a slasher killer has chosen their high school as his new home of slaughter. It becomes a race against time to stop the killer, which will in turn save the world – if only they can get out of detention.

The Good:
As the female lead, Shanley Caswell was very good. I am a bit amazed that I have not seen her in more stuff.

The Bad:
OK…so the premise of this movie is a good one and despite being a knock-off of the Scream films it still is a promising concept to do a satiric take on slasher movies if it’s done right. Sadly, this movie took an inexplicable turn into crazy town and lost any hopes of being a coherent motion picture. Out the window went the entire premise of someone dressing as a movie character and killing teens so that for a good chunk of the movie it was like the murders never happened. In place of the actual point of the movie was a bunch of nonsense with mutants, Freaky Friday body switching and time travel that made about as much sense as it sounds and was shockingly devoid of anything resembling fun. And by the time the movie got back to slasher aspect I had long since stop giving a damn.

The Ugly:
For a movie called Detention there was an appalling lack of time spent in detention.

Final Verdict: Detention is a  film that had the potential to be a darkly comic Breakfast Club meets Scream but that ultimately ended up dying under the weight of the director and writer’s pathological desire to be quirky and edgy. This movie was neither. It also was not good at all.

Grade: D-

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