Tamara

A rehash of CARRIE (1976) by way of teen body-count movie cliches, this uninspired shocker delivers the requisite gore but doesn't have an original thought in its rotting head. Smart, dowdy, socially maladroit Tamara Riley (Jenna Dewan) is the quintessential high-school misfit: She lives with her divorced father (Chris Sigurdson); who's a lecherous alcoholic,...read more

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Reviewed by Maitland McDonagh
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A rehash of CARRIE (1976) by way of teen body-count movie cliches, this uninspired shocker delivers the requisite gore but doesn't have an original thought in its rotting head. Smart, dowdy, socially maladroit Tamara Riley (Jenna Dewan) is the quintessential high-school misfit: She lives with her divorced father (Chris Sigurdson); who's a lecherous alcoholic, her classmates alternately mock and ignore her; and she has a miserably unrequited crush on English teacher Mr. Natolly (Matthew Marsden), who's married to the school guidance counselor (Claudette Mink). Tamara takes refuge in witchcraft, which only cements her weirdo status. Mr. Natolly's well-meaning attempt to boost Tamara's self-image by submitting a paper she wrote about student athletes' abuse of steroids to the school paper backfires terribly, earning her the enmity of jocks Patrick (Gil Hacohen), Shawn (Bryan Clark) and Kisha (Melissa Elias). They come up with a cruel plan to humiliate Tamara by luring her to a motel room with the promise of an assignation with Mr. Natolly and taping her as she realizes she's been tricked. But the prank goes horribly wrong and Tamara winds up dead. Shawn, Patrick and Kisha convince their unwitting collaborators — brainy AV nerd Roger (Marc DeVigne) and nice couple Chloe and Jesse (Katie Stuart, Chad Faust) — that going to the police will ruin all their lives, so they bury Tamara's body in the woods and vow to keep the whole awful event a secret. So imagine their surprise when Tamara turns up for school on Monday morning, looking like an underage sexpot and brimming with positively unnerving confidence. Though they tell themselves they must not have killed Tamara after all, it quickly becomes apparent that she's back from the grave and thirsting for unholy vengeance against everyone who ever wronged her. Written by Jeffrey Reddick, who scripted all three FINAL DESTINATION films, and directed by Jeremy Haft, whose only other feature credit is the insipid family wilderness picture GRIZZLY MOUNTAIN (1997), this formulaic slasher picture goes through its derivative paces with grim determination, visiting baroquely awful fates on a succession of nubile young people as the survivors try to figure out how to defeat their unnatural tormentor. Repetitive and uninspired, it panders to the lowest expectations of horror buffs and squanders the efforts of a competent cast.

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  • Released: 2006
  • Rating: R
  • Review: A rehash of CARRIE (1976) by way of teen body-count movie cliches, this uninspired shocker delivers the requisite gore but doesn't have an original thought in its rotting head. Smart, dowdy, socially maladroit Tamara Riley (Jenna Dewan) is the quintessenti… (more)

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