Urban Legend (1998)

Genres - Horror  |   Sub-Genres - Slasher Film, Teen Movie  |   Release Date - Sep 25, 1998 (USA)  |   Run Time - 100 min.  |   Countries - Canada , France , United States   |   MPAA Rating - R
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It's becoming clearer all the time that Scream did the world a disservice by making slasher films hip and profitable again. Urban Legend is among the unworthiest of the Scream clones, and the requisite "self-awareness" can hardly qualify as such when the script is this lame. It's not a bad concept for a movie, and viewers may find themselves nodding in recognition with each reference to a familiar modern myth. Especially rib tickling is the persistent notion that Mikey, the kid from the Life cereal commercials, died from consuming a lethal combination of soda and pop rocks candy. But this film is so eager to shed its originality in favor of the most hackneyed genre clich├ęs that it even abandons its own convictions. While some of the murders are carried out according to the details of these urban legends, far too many involve just your run-of-the-mill axe-wielding brutality. The college student victims are all mean and shallow anyway, so they obviously deserve what they get. It's amazing that horror movie directors (in this case, first-timer Jamie Blanks) continue to stage so many startle scares, punctuated by the shrill scream of string instruments, because that hasn't been frightening in 20 years. Of all its numerous flaws, the worst is that Urban Legend contains nary a moment of genuine terror or even eerieness. That should be truly scary to the studio heads who continue to greenlight this type of schlock.