REVIEW: All the Boys Love Mandy Lane (2006)


All the Boys Love Mandy Lane: D


This movie is so fucking boring and unlikable, I can only write about it in short sentences, so let’s get this over with: It’s a slasher movie. There are teenagers who go to a secluded cabin that exists for them to abuse drugs and fornicate in. They are systematically killed. There are red herrings and an obvious conclusion.

Let’s talk aesthetics. The film comes off as wannabe 90s slasher flick meets wannabe grindhouse. It’s I Know What You Did Last Summer run through all your girlfriend’s gritty Instagram filters. There are long, agonizing montages of teens frolicking in meadows that remind me of Levis commercials. People who think the Texas Chainsaw reboots are the only horror movies ever made will call these scenes “stylish,” but they seemed like disjointed filler to me.

I seriously felt like an elderly curmudgeon wishing swift deaths on every character. Sometimes, horror movies will make the expendable teenagers especially unlikable/obnoxious so that you cheer when they get butchered. This movie went the other way with that strategy and it was infuriating: they tried to make the teens stylish and rebellious at the same time and they just came off as contrived advertisements.

Here’s what the film has going for it: The kills are sort of a mystery. I don’t mean in a “who done it” kind of way (I think my dog figured out the “twists” by the second act). I mean I couldn’t tell if the kills were satirizing horror movies or paying homage to them. I went back and forth trying to determine artistic intent, so I’ll give the movie props for some consistent ambiguity.

This is not really a compliment when you think about it. How do you think the director would feel if I told him that his movie’s greatest achievement is the detective work it put me through to understand what exactly he was fucking up? The kill scenes weren’t silly enough to be satire and too shitty to be actual tributes to other slasher flicks.

That was my experience with this film: trying to deduce the meaning/intent of every instance of violence with riotous teens frolicking in a pestilent Coca-cola commercial sepia lens-flare back-drop. No one wants to watch 90 minutes of Mandy and her friends Snapchatting each other in a rye field at dusk. GET A JOB.

The gore was alright. There is some crunchy skull mashing and some spraying wounds that were entertaining enough.

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