Directed by Geoffrey Wright; Written by Ken Selden
The quiet town of Cherry Falls, Virginia, is visited by a killer that targets virgins from the local high school. After the news breaks out to the public, the students become hypersexualized and plan a sex party to elude the apparent danger.
Cherry Falls follows in the footsteps of Wes Craven’s Scream by providing a satirical account of the cliched ‘slasher’ storyline. This film plays on further cliches in horror films regarding sex, in the sense that, in Cherry Falls, the individuals abstaining from sex are the ones dying.
Further comparisons can be made between this film and Scream. Both films are strong in plot and with the twist. Cherry Falls, however, does not provide the iconic characters associated with the Scream franchise.
Brittany Murphy’s lead performance as Jody, daughter of the local Sheriff, is convincing. Her subtle suggestiveness regarding many of the characters builds the foundation of the hypersexual tone. Two other performances are noteworthy, though the entire cast did an excellent job: Jay Mohr as Mr. Marliston, a high school English teacher who somewhat becomes the subject of Jody’s flirtation, and Michael Biehn as Sheriff Marken, Jody’s father.
Despite the effective tone, enthralling plot, and well executed twist, the film’s ending is lackluster. In retrospect, the conclusion is not so memorable anyway.
Cherry Falls is an effective slasher that should be mentioned alongside Scream in discussing the all time greats of the genre.