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Plot: Kelly Fairchild has become a college student and a member of the Delta Ro Kai sorority. During all her life, she has suffered from a nightmare where a man is burning. She meets an assistant professor who can help interpret the dream. The sorority's initiation ritual is a nighttime… Runtime: 97 min Release Date: 07 Dec 1984
A group of sorority pledges sneak into a mall overnight to pull off a prank that will get them initiated. Tasked with stealing the security guard's uniform, it shouldn't be too hard since Kelly Fairchild's father owns the mall, and she's one of the pledges. She has keys to get in and knows where the spare uniforms are kept, so no problem. Someone else is in there with them though, and it isn't long before bloodshed ensues.This is actually one of my favorite slashers, a large reason for that being the creepy atmosphere of the mall at night. It has multiple levels and is <more>
unlike any mall I've ever been to. We also get a few instances of characters catching a glimpse of the killer lurking about, something that I'm a sucker for. Getting that eerie look at something out of the corner of your eye, not sure if you really saw anything at all. The killer's POV shots were extremely well-done, especially the very creepy bit of the killer observing Dwight Fairchild as he's loading his car. The score certainly helps the mood, as does some of the dreary photography in certain scenes.Daphne Zuniga plays the lead, and I've always found her appealing even if she's not the greatest actress. Vera Miles and Clu Gulager are also on hand to add some class to the proceedings. As for the kills, they're not the bloodiest, but they get the job done just fine. The most notable death sees one of the pledges stabbed repeatedly as she holds the PA systems microphone, her screams echoing throughout the mall. On my initial viewing, I didn't see the ending coming, though there are some blatant clues when re-watching.
To get over a reoccuring nightmare, a sorority pledge and her friend's break into her father's humongous department store. But a killer has followed them, and she discovers there is no way to escape the nightmare she has entered. First half is a bit boring, but once they get in the store, this turns into a creepy, extremely suspenseful thriller with a good twist ending. 7.5 out of 10.
Scary mall movie with a scary bathroom scene (by josh-168)
I have always been a huge horror buff and i was 10 when i saw this movie....it is one of the only movies that i had trouble sleeping from...This is my all time favorite scary movie and i am glad to see some of the stars of it making it bigger....Rent it if you can find it cuz you WILL NOT be disappointed!!!!!!!
Nicely done little slasher film. (by FrightMeter)
"The Initiation" is the ultimate sorority house slasher film that stands better than many the more popular "The House on Sorority Row," "Girl's Nite Out," and "Killer Party" films of the same "genre." After a relatively dream-like, and confusing opening sequence, we are introduced to Kelly Fairchild Daphne Zuniga who is set to pledge the most prestigous Sorority at her college. We find that she has recently been suffering from some terrible nightmares where she sees fire and someone being brutally stabbed. Her uptight mother Vera <more>
Miles tries to downplay the dreams as nothing more than college student stress. About the same time, down the way, a inmate escapes from the local mental ward and brutally murders the nurse with a garden tool. Kelly has some more dreams, she starts seeing a college professor who specializes in memory regression, and finds out that for her pledge, she and the other pledges must break into her father's mall the strangest looking mall I have ever seen and steal the security officer's uniform, all within about the first half hour of the movie. Interesting enough to keep our attention, and with a few sparatic bloody murders to satisfy the gore hounds, but the real prize comes with about the last half hour of the film, when the pledges go into the mall. It does play out to be very menacing, for the simple fact that location the filmmakers selected for the mall is quite creepy in itself. Daphne Zuniga plays her character very well and we can't help but to like her. This plays true with each of the characters, as we get to know some personal information about each one of during the dinner sequence that attaches us to them and makes it that much more difficult to see their fates unfold. The murders are fairly bloody and come pretty rapidly at the end of the film. My only complaint comes with how rushed the ending came, yes, it was a surprise, but I felt a little more information was required for the viewer to be satisfied and believe the ending. Other than that, the rest of the film worked very well and was quite frightening in parts. Again, I certainly think that it is the best "sorority" themed slasher to ever be produced. A must see for any horror fan. 8 out of 10.
Mental Hospitals, Sororities, and Malls - Oh, My! (by marcusgrant-86630)
Easily one of the more fun entries in the later part of the slasher cycle, The Initiation rewards patient viewers with a gonzo finale and a lot of fun set pieces. Daphne Zuniga stars as Kelly Fairchild, a rich girl pledging a popular sorority on campus. She seems to have the perfect life, but she's been suffering from horrible dreams - dreams that show her as a young child stabbing her father as a strange man catches on fire and dances around the room. To make things even more complicated, her mother has been acting all cagey and weird since a patient escaped from a local mental hospital. <more>
Everything comes to a head on the night Kelly steals the keys to her father's shopping mall for her sorority initiation. The Initiation is part Hitchcock, part Friday the 13th, and part soap opera. It shouldn't work, but it really does thanks to a game cast and a surprisingly interesting script. It's not the goriest movie of all time, but there are a few harrowing death sequences and it helps that you really do care about many of the characters.Zuniga makes for a likable heroine and veterans Clu Gulager and Vera Miles offer wonderful support as her secretive parents. Still, it's Joy Jones who steals the show as Heidi - a Velma-from-Scooby-Doo type who helps trace back the origins of Kelly's troubling dreams.The Initiation is one of the better late entries in the slasher cycle and deserves your time.
a fun slasher film with a little class (by Nightman85)
Sorority girl Kelly Fairchild is troubled about some unanswered questions from her past. But that's the least of her worries now that she and her friends are pledging to a college sorority. The initiation involves the girls breaking into a shopping mall, but having a homicidal escaped murderer locked in with them wasn't part of the plan!The Initiation is a slasher flick that delivers the "goods" for horror fans. Plus, there's some plot twists, a few veteran actors, and a higher-than-average budget to boot!With a fairly solid cast, fiendishly good murder scenes, some <more>
tight suspense especially in the climax , and a bit of style The Initiation is one of the stronger slasher films of its time. Along with Hell Night 1981 and House on Sorority Row 1983 , Initiation also remains one of the more memorable college-themed splatter flicks of the 80's. An entertaining treat for slasher fans. *** out of ****
The Initiation is definitely one of the better 80's horror films. A sorority pledge named Kelly Fairchild is have a recurring dream that holds the key to something traumatic from her childhood. She tells her college professor about it and he starts digging into the family secret surrounding the dream. All of this is going on while the sorority she is in is planning an initiation for Kelly and some of her friends. They have to spend the night in a mall which Kelly's family owns. They end up getting locked in the dark mall with a killer running around knocking many of them off one by <more>
one. There is a very neat twist with the killer's identity which leads into those recurring dreams Kelly was having.The cast is pretty good. Vera Miles and Clu Gulager are no strangers to the horror genre. Miles was in Psycho 1 and 2, and Gulager was in A Nightmare on Elm St 2. Daphne Zuniga does good in the lead, and Hunter Tylo famous from the Bold and the Beautiful does a good job as well. The setting of the dark spooky mall after hours is very well done. Elevator doors opening, a killer lurking in almost every shadow, and the overall effect of being in a dark mall overnight is just creepy. The murders are sort of gory, one in particular involves one of the girls being stabbed repeatedly at the night watchman's desk.The story of Kelly and her family makes the movie very watchable and adds a good twist to the end of it all. The acting is pretty good and there is a creepiness about the whole being trapped in a mall with a killer on the loose. Definitely check this out if you like horror, especially 80's horror movies.8/10
The Plot Kelly Fairchild Daphne Zuniga has nightmares involving a man attacking her parents Vera Miles and Clu Gulager . The dream always ends with the mystery man getting torched after falling into a fireplace. As a pledge for Delta Rho Chi, Kelly is forced to break into her father's mall and steal the night watchman's clothes. Someone else is lurking in the mall and they're only interested in taking lives.The Initiation follows the traditional slasher formula well added stars Miles and Gulager , young, talented unknowns Zuniga, Hunter Tylo, James Read , new wave band <more>
Refugee performing at a party, shower scenes, bloody deaths, etc. Following the formula so closely is a good thing. The film makers set out to create an entertaining slasher for slasher fans and they succeeded. What makes The Initiation a stand out slasher is the strong performances, Larry Stewart's direction, and Charles Pratt's script.The characters are well established and likable, the death scenes have so much impact because of this connection to the cast, the first half is rather quiet but kept me interested right up until the build up towards the end.Daphne Zuniga played the lead heroine really well, after her short lived stint in not so great slasher flick The Dorm That Dripped Blood , she gets the main role in this movie and she truly shines, I enjoyed the romance subplot between her and her teacher Peter James Read who monitors her dreams along with his glamorous assistant Heidi Joy Jones just kept me interested all the way through. The final showdown at the mall was suspenseful and well mapped out, the teens weren't just quickly killed off, the filmmakers stretched it out a bit before each one gets picked off one by one adding more and more tension and suspense, and plus what I liked about it was that it wasn't all too predictable.This movie is certainly a lot of fun the cat-'n-mouse antics as the killer chases the teens around the mall in what comes across like a roller-boogie take on the setting of Romero's DAWN OF THE DEAD 1978 . It is also probably about now that I should mention the lively modus operandi of the slasher- dispatching victims with axes, harpoons, arrows; it's not really that gory but still well done. The ending which I won't give away has a "Happy Birthday To Me" feel to it which I loved the shocking twist which you won't see coming.All in all "The Initiation" is definitely one of the best slashers from the 80's right up there with House On The Sorority Row, The Prowler, Curtains, My Bloody Valentine... well I could go on all day, definitely a must see for all slasher fans.