Olive Film's Blu-ray Student Bodies (1981)

Student Bodies (1981)

Company: Olive Films

StarringKristen Riter, Matthew Goldsby, Jerry Belson, Joe Flood

Plot: Product Description: The body count is rising at Lamab High School where a goulashes-wearing, eggplant/chalkboard eraser/paperclip-wielding serial killer is taking out promiscuous teens at breakneck speed. When intrepid high school student, Toby goes in search of clues that will reveal the killer’s identity, no one is safe from the comic hijinks's. Teachers, fellow students, parents and the quadruple jointed janitor are all likely suspects in a film directed by

My Review and Thoughts:

This is actually believe it or not, the first time I have ever seen this film. Going into this, I knew it was geared as the first comedy spoof of slasher films. This is a silly, comical horror making fun, and stabbing, no pun intended, at the genera of the horror world. I smiled when I learned this was going to be an Olive Film Blu-ray release. I was actually in the market to finally buy it, and watch it, because I was writing an article on the world of comedy horrors, and so this one, was on my list to watch. A wonderful new outlet for this old 80’s slasher spoof. Olive Films, like many of their releases has created a crisper image, vibrant in color and sound. Never seeing this before, I can’t compare it to anything, but after viewing this Blu-ray, nothing could be any better. The blu-ray is beautiful, and showcases the art form of cleaning, and fixing old films, and displaying them with a new format, and that is what Olive Films has done.

Now as for the performers in Student Bodies, relatively all of them where no name actors, or not actors at all. Many have only acted in these parts, a few have gone on to act in 2 or 3 other films, and TV, and many of them are dead already. I suppose the most famous of the collection of performers is the main character, The Breather, who is the killer. Actor, writer, director, producer, Jerry Belson. Belson had acted in television before this part. After Student Bodies, he acted one other time, but went on to be a writer of movies and TV, and also directed. He had been a writer of TV before his part in Student Bodies. His last writing was for the TV show Tracey Takes On. He died at the young age of 68. Kevin Manis who played Scott, has popped up here and there. The two that have went on to act in many shows, and films are, Gullen G. Chambers, who played, Charles Ray in Student Bodies, which might I add was his first acting job period. The actor Jack Armstrong who plays Joe in Student Bodies, has gone onto act in film, and TV, mainly soap operas. Student Bodies was also his first Feature Film as actor. I personally remember him from one of my favorite Cultish films, 1991’s The Guyver, where he plays the main lead Sean Barker a.k.a. The Guyver. Last but not least would be the actor simply known as, The Stick, who was Malvert the Janitor. The Stick was born Patrick Boone Varnell. Student Bodies was his only movie, and sadly he died at the young age of 48 years old.

Student Bodies is truly a gift of its time. Making fun of the slasher horror movie genera had not been done before. Student Bodies was different, unique, and original. This day and age when spoof, after spoof seems to be everywhere, Student Bodies was the grandfather of this style. The spoof of horror movies can be traced back to the Abbot and Costello days meeting the monsters, and so on. But the slasher had not been picked apart before. Years before Scream, Student Bodies embraced an originality not seen before.

This is co-directed by two directors, one uncredited and one credited. Credited to Mickey Rose who was a major script writer, working on such films as Woody Allen’s Take the Money and Run and Bananas, and many others. This is Mickey Rose's only directing credit. This reality comes into play because of the strike, and union issues.  

Now the secrets behind the film. Michael Ritchie produced, and directed, but because of a strike at the time, he could not put his name on it. Mickey Rose was used because of being the co-director. Also the movie was written by Jerry Belson, but he could not place his name on it because of the strike reasons. Michael Ritchie was a different style of director that created so many funny, odd and Cult following films in his vast career. From The Bad News Bears, The Island (1980), Fletch, The Golden Child, The Fantasticks, and many, many, more. Sadly he passed away at the very young age of 62, but left many examples of fun cinema. Richie had a love affair with sports, and that can be seen throughout his movie making career, from Bad News Bears, to Semi-Tough, and 1994’s The Scout, among others. His sport films mainly had a comical reality to them.

Something else that makes Student Bodies unique is every time someone dies a body count is stuck on the screen, adding that odd and comical reality of a countdown. 

Student Bodies is an acquired taste that many won’t get, and others will love. I for one thought it was a total hoot. Olive Films did a fantastic job in capturing this old school spoof, and also giving it a new outlet that many can experience for the first time, on this lovely new Blu-ray.


1.78:1 Aspect Ratio; COLOR
Languages: English


A splendid Blu-ray. A funny comical horror spoof. Cheesy, corny, cultish over the top entertainment that leaves a silly impression.


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