REVIEW: I KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER

 

CAST

Jennifer Love Hewitt (Heartbreakers)
Sarah Michelle Gellar (Cruel Intentions)
Ryan Phillippe (Crash)
Freddie Prince Jr. (Scooby-Doo)
Anne Heche (Wag The Dog)
Bridgette Wilson (Mortal Kombat)
Johnny Galecki (The Big Bang Theory)
Muse Watson (NCIS)

On the Fourth of July, Julie James, her boyfriend Ray, Julie’s best friend Helen and Helen’s boyfriend Barry drive home from a party. While driving, Ray becomes distracted, accidentally hitting a pedestrian. Max, who has a crush on Julie, stops nearby. Julie convinces him everything is okay, so he leaves. The group decides to dispose of the body. At the docks, the man revives, but falls into the water and apparently drowns.The following year, Julie is home from college for the summer. She receives a letter stating, “I know what you did last summer.” She tells Barry and Helen about the note; Barry suspects Max. The trio go to the docks where Max works as a fisherman. Barry threatens Max with a hook. Julie discovers that Ray works there, and he tries reconciling with Julie. That evening, Max is secretly killed by a figure in a rain slicker wielding a hook. Barry discovers a note in his gym locker containing a picture of his car and the message, “I know.” Barry gets his jacket stolen and is almost run over by the slicker-wearing figure, driving Barry’s car. Julie realizes that the person they hit was David Egan. She and Helen head out to the Egan home. They find David’s sister Missy, who explains that David’s death devastated their family. Missy tells them that an old friend, Billy Blue, paid his respects after David died.As Helen prepares for the Fourth of July parade, the killer sneaks into her house, cuts off her hair and writes, “Soon,” on her mirror. As Julie rushes to Helen’s house, she finds Max’ corpse wearing Barry’s jacket in her trunk. When she goes to show the others, the body is missing. Julie, Helen, and Barry confront Ray about recent events. Ray claims to have received a similar letter. As Helen and Barry participate in the parade, Barry notices people wearing the same kind of slicker. Chasing one, Barry leaves Helen on one of the parade floats. As it passes by a building, she notices a shadowy figure in a slicker wielding a hook threateningly.That same day, Julie revisits Missy. Missy tells Julie that David left a suicide note. As the writing matches that of the note she received, Julie tries convincing Missy that it is not a suicide note but a threat. Missy forces her to leave. At the Croaker Pageant, Helen witnesses Barry being murdered while he is watching from a balcony. Helen rushes to the balcony with a police officer but finds no sign of the killer or Barry. The officer offers to drive Helen home.Julie researches David Egan’s death. A year before the accident, he and his girlfriend Susie were involved in a car crash near the scene of the foursome’s accident. David survived but Susie died. The research mentions Susie’s father, Ben Willis. Julie deduces they ran over Ben, who had just killed David. While driving home, Helen and the officer are stopped by a stalled truck. The officer is killed by a dark figure with a hook. Helen rushes to her family’s store, where her sister Elsa lets her in. The killer enters through a side door and kills Elsa. Helen finds Elsa’s body and attempts to flee. The killer drags Helen away and slashes her to death, her screams being drowned out by the noise of the parade.Julie discovers that Ben Willis, a fisherman, is the real killer. He apparently murdered David after his daughter Susie was killed in the accident. On the way home, Ben was run down by the group. Julie meets up with Ray and tries to explain, but Ray refuses to believe her. Ben knocks Ray out and puts Julie in his boat. Looking around, she finds a room containing photos and articles about her and her friends, and pictures of Susie Willis. Julie realizes she is on Ben Willis’s boat. Ben sets the boat adrift, but Ray awakens and boards Ben’s boat with a motorboat. He uses the rigging to sever Ben’s hook-carrying hand and plummet over the side. When the police question Julie and Ray, they, to cover up the car accident, deny knowing why Ben attempted to kill them. A year later, Julie returns home to see Ray. As she enters the shower, she notices one of the mirrors has the sentence “I still know” written on it. A dark figure crashes through the mirror.I think the movie’s appeal plays in a couple of different ways; first off, at its base is a story that has been told time and time again through the years. Someone who’s supposedly killed and comes back to haunt and kills with a hook. The story is told in a convincing way by the actors, who use Williamson’s script (and Gillespie’s direction) to its full advantage, smartly mixing in moments of horror and humor, as Williamson did in the Scream films.

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