I try not to straight up hate on movies, as I know how hard they are to make. But Nightmare Weekend is a film that really wants me to hate it. As the film is all over the place. Nightmare Weekend like other films this month, is distributed by Troma. But that’s the best thing that Nightmare Weekend has going for it.
I’m only going to do the broad strokes as this film is a mess. Brilliant scientist Edward Blake (Wellington Meffert) has invented a machine that’s closer to magic than it is to science. While the program is able to affect our world directly, it also turns inanimate objects into metallic spheres that when consumed remove violent and antisocial behavior. Edwards assistant Julie Clingstone (Debbie Laster) is unhappy with the slow progress to human trials and after take bribes from some shady business interested in Dr. Blake’s work invites three girls to his house for the weekend. The three girls also bring boys they meet along the way. Dr. Blake’s daughter Jessica (Debra Hunter) spends her time with George a seemingly self-aware puppet that interfaces with her father’s machine. While the three sorority girls shower, dress, undress, and have sex. Jessica falls in love with local biker Ken (Dale Midkiff), who happens to be in league with Julie. Julie uses the Dr. Blake’s machine on the girls, transforming them into killer mutants with how disfigured and disgusting they become being directly tied to how slutty they are.
Everything about this film is a complete and utter mess. Sub-plots are discarded as fast as they are made. I understand that Nightmare Weekend was victim to numerous re-writes while filming, lost a large chunk of their budget and was generally plagued. Still I don’t feel that justify the extreme lack of coherence.
The magic computer is a big issue for me. I’m normally fine with McGuffins, the plot needs a device and I get that. But this thing is able to transmute matter, control cars remotely and sense when Jessica is in danger from miles away… then help. Other than it’s science, we never get any kind of explanation.
Another major issue I have is how little happens. For a film damn near a ninety minute run time I would expect more to happen. The vast majority of the film is dedicated to either Jessica roller skating around or the sorority girls having sex. We never learn anything about the corporation behind Julie, or the fallout after the end of the film.
The worst thing is how dark the film is. I’m not sure if it’s the just the copy I watch. But if the scenes aren’t happening outside in the sun, then you can’t see what’s happening. It’s incredibly frustrating as I kept feeling like I was missing a lot of what was going on due to the mere fact I couldn’t see what was going on.
Final thoughts, even knowing all the hardships Nightmare Weekend faced during production, I still can’t excuse it. The film is just too jumbled, chaotic and poorly put together. Sure the acting is bad and the story line is lame. But that’s not why I watch cheap horror, I love cheap horror because it’s almost always entertaining. Something that Nightmare Weekend fails at spectacularly.