5Star: Tuesday 20 October, 10.45pm
The Riverton Ripper is all over the news. Doctor Harris Yulin says the family-man serial killer is not a monster. That diagnosis gets him a bullet in the brain. But on the stormy night that the cops nab the Ripper, seven babies are born prematurely in Riverton. And one of them is his son… 16 years later, the killings begin again.
Wes Craven’s divertingly contrived comic horror carries strong echoes of his fairy-tale fable The People Under the Stairs, but it’s no crazier than Shocker. As for the Riverton Seven, they’re a strange bunch, even by American teen standards. Max Thierot is the Gump-like Bug, the key to it all. And quite possibly the killer. “He’s coming,” says Zena Grey, referring to the Ripper.
“Jesus?” asks Bug, innocently. “We should be so lucky,” says Zena, halfway to hell. Craven’s first film since 2005’s Red Eye got terrible reviews from the critics, who seemed to take it seriously (even though it was screened in 3D). It received repectful reviews in France, though, notably from Cahiers du Cinéma.