After watching Camp Slaughter, which takes place in 1981, and now Bloody Bloody Bible Camp, which takes place in 1984, I’ve decided that every slasher made should take place in the 80s. It just feels so right. And there are no pesky cell phones, which means no throwaway dialogue about having no signal.
Bloody Bloody Bible Camp is a comic homage to all the summer camp horror of the 80s, with special love for Sleepaway Camp. It’s got Phantasm alum Reggie Bannister as a priest. It’s got cameos by Ron Jeremy and horror director Tim Sullivan. It also makes a big joke out of religion, so if you’re extremely faithful, this one will definitely offend you. And also, why are you watching horror movies? Doesn’t it say in the Bible somewhere that that’s a sin?
The film begins in 1977 at Happy Day Bible Camp. This opening is like a slasher short. The whole camp is slaughtered by a nun in a freaky devil mask using a crucifix knife blade as a weapon. This isn’t the first time this weapon has been used in a slasher, but I won’t tell you what 80s film it was used in, because it will spoil that film for you.
So anyway, the 1977 segment has over-the-top gore, raunchy sex humor (and sick sex!), and gross bathroom humor. This also begins the gay priest jokes, which run rampant throughout the film. Man-loving priest jokes just never get old. There’s also a slow-mo shot of boobs and total 70s bush!
Flash forward to 1984! Reggie Bannister is the priest leading a new group of kids to Happy Day Bible Camp. They’re warned by the locals about “Sister Mary Chopper,” but do they listen? Hell no! I mean…Oh good heavens, no!
With the super strong opening sequence, it’s a little surprising that the film takes a slow turn for a while, but if you watch the original Sleepaway Camp, you’ll see that the pacing is actually very similar. Reggie Bannister gets a lot of screen time as “comic relief.” We also get some interactions between the characters, including an incredibly dead-on exchange demonstrating sex panic in the 80s; one guy tells a shirtless cutie that if they do the girls up the butt, they can’t get them pregnant…to which the shirtless cutie expresses concern about getting AIDS from her that way.
There are also scenes interspersed of the freaky-assed nun in the devil costume singing eerily about Jesus to a doll. But it’s not until an hour into the movie that the serious slashing begins. The killer is creepy as hell, and as campy as the film continues to be, the chase sequences are actually incredibly effective and full-fledged horror. There are also subtle musical cues very reminiscent of those in films like the original Friday the 13th.
The ending is totally wacky and you can’t help but laugh. Ron Jeremy shows up with a very important PSA about being gay, and the great twist is revealed. Longtime slasher fans will know exactly where this is going, but that’s pretty much the point. It’s essentially a spoof.
Definitely think about showing Bloody Bloody Bible Camp at your next slasher party. It’s gory, slapstick, perverse, offensive, and perfectly captures the spirit of 80s.
And I try to capture the spirit of the 80s in this vlog about the film: