The Cheerleader Sleepover Slaughter (2022) Review
With two nudity-filled locker room scenes and a fairly graphic straight razor throat slitting even before we get to the opening credits, The Cheerleader Sleepover Slaughter certainly seems like it’s going to resemble an old-fashioned slasher in more ways than just the title.
The plot similarly follows a very familiar pattern and a group of cheerleaders who must be incredibly dumb because they look to be in their thirties and haven’t made it out of high school. Lisa (Indica Jane, Bratty Foot Girls), Renee (Sydney Spaulding, A New Daylight), Marcy (Sushii Xhyvette Holder, Zed’s Dead, Kill-Cam), and the rest of the crew are getting ready for the annual cheerleader sleepover, but Ali (Vera Marlowe, Pandemic Thirst, Satan Lives: The Rise of the Illuminati Hotties) who is supposed to be hosting it seems to have dropped off the face of the Earth.
Lori (Taylor Herd, Beer Tales), who is desperate to become a cheerleader, offers to let them have it at her house instead. But it may not matter, because as the other members of the squad begin to fall victim to a black-clad killer there may not be anyone left to attend.
Writer/director Christopher Leto (Seeing Evil, The Housewife Slasher) gives us a fairly large cast full of possible victims and suspects to keep the viewer guessing who’s next as well as whodunnit. That ranges from the obvious suspects like Lori to the various horny guys like Bo (Beux Leto, If I Can’t Have You…, Naked Cannibal Campers), Jason (Jayden Leto, Coulrophobia, The Broadcast) and Joe (Collin O’Neill, The Voyager, Beer Tales) to coaches, parents and even a creepy photographer.
Given that, and the fact that The Cheerleader Sleepover Slaughter just makes it over the hour mark at a running time of sixty-two minutes you would expect it to be wall-to-wall stalk and slash. Now don’t get me wrong, there is a good-sized body count for such a low-budget film, but Leto seems to focus as much on the flesh as he does on the blood if you get my meaning.
In and of itself that’s not a bad thing, but it means that The Cheerleader Sleepover Slaughter keeps undercutting any tension it might build up in order to let somebody get naked. As a result, the film comes off feeling more like an exploitation film than a horror film. Again, not necessarily a bad thing, just don’t expect too much in the way of scares. It’s the same with gore. We get a couple of decent throat slashings and a knife to the skull. Beyond that, however, the effects are a bit more simplistic and a meat cleaver to the skull scene is actually rather poor.
In the last act, the script gives a little twist and The Cheerleader Sleepover Slaughter turns into a sequel to another of Leto’s films. I won’t spoil the surprise and say which one, but it was a neat swerve and makes for a solid ending. I just wish it had been led into better than a momentum-killing dose of expository dialogue.
So, if you’re in the mood for something that has more in common with The Sorority House Massacre than it does with The Slumber Party Massacre, you should be happy with The Cheerleader Sleepover Slaughter. It probably won’t scare you, but there are plenty of boobs mixed in with the blood.
The Cheerleader Sleepover Slaughter is available free to watch on Tubi where the service is available. There also are/were Blu-ray, DVD and Digital download versions available, you can check the production company’s Facebook page for more information. And if you’re looking for more films like this one, FilmTagger can offer some suggestions.