Thursday, July 24, 2014

Animal Room (1995)

When a school decides to deal with difficult students by putting them in a room in the basement (aka the animal room), bookish  Arnie ends up with the delinquents due to his drug use.  Arnie's lived with his alcoholic mother since his parents divorced, and his coping mechanism for his messed up life is to use drugs.

The school takes a zero tolerance approach to drug use and doesn't care that Arnie is an intelligent student with a passion for Shakespeare who really doesn't belong with the thugs banished to the basement.  The school psychologist knows Arnie shouldn't be in with Doug and his gang, but the principal insists Arnie stay down there until he gives up drugs.

High school jock Gary begins talking to Arnie. They used to be friends when they were kids. The two grew up dreaming of going on a Caribbean vacation when they graduated.  Gary feels bad for dumping strange Arnie for the cool kids, and has booked a trip for them to realize their childhood vacation dreams.

The psycho leader of the juvenile delinquents named Doug targets Arnie and makes his life hell. Sometimes Gary is able to keep Doug and his gang at bay, but Arnie is threatened and harassed every day.  The school doesn't do anything other than tell them to stay away from each other, which is ridiculous since they're both in a little room in the basement without supervision.

Although this is on a horror movie pack, it's not anywhere near horror. Sure, Doug is an obnoxious psycho, but mostly he just harasses Arnie.  I kept waiting for Arnie to go nuts and mow the gang down in a hail of gun fire. The other thing I kept wondering is why the hell Arnie didn't stop going to school.  Geez kid, get your GED, drop out, do something other than go to that freakin' room in the basement.

Oddly enough this film features a cameo by the Misfits. They perform a song in the studio while our bully Doug and his gang of thugs gets revenge on the engineer, another kid that ended up in the animal room.

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