Scream Factory: Sleepaway Camp Collector’s Edition (Review)

Scream Factory

Image courtesy of Scream Factory.
Image courtesy of Scream Factory.

We certainly hope everyone is having a wonderful and safe Memorial Day but we have another exciting cult horror classic from our friends at Scream Factory to share with you.

On May 27, 2014 the “Sleepaway Camp Collector’s Edition” will hit store shelves and hopefully thrill old fans of this awesome slasher film as well as a whole new generation! This was the movie that I vividly recall everyone talking about in Junior High School and for good reason. It’s a perfect snapshot of the 80s for me as well as why I never ever agreed to go to a Summer Camp in my youth…I mean…I was well versed in what happened at Camp Crystal Lake and with Sleepaway Camp the horrors of Camp Arawak!

For those of you who have not been fortunate enough to catch this film yet I need to warn you from trying to look anything up online as you will do yourself a monumental disservice, the ending will be spoiled for you and that is something you should savor because after the credits role the aftermath will stick with you for quite some time…it has for me for almost 26 years.

At the beginning of Sleepaway Camp we are introduced to what should be a lovely summer day for a Father and his two children, Angela and Peter. They are boating on a lake, the kids decided to push their father off the boat as a prank and the boat turns over dumping them all in the drink. Also on that lake are a trio of teenagers who are having fun water skiing…but not paying attention to what is before them. Though they try to swerve at the last second the teenagers end up striking the overturned boat, killing Angela’s brother and Father. Angela is sent to live with her…eccentric Aunt Martha Thomas (Desiree Gould) and her cousin Ricky. It’s eight years later when the movie starts proper and Angela (Felissa Rose) and Ricky (Jonathan Tiersten) are headed to Camp Arawak for the Summer.

As they arrive at the camp we are introduced to the main characters of the film, Ricky’s best friend Paul (Christopher Collet of the Manhattan Project). Meg (Katherine Kamhi) and Judy (Karen Fields) who will become the bane of Angela’s camp life with their cattiness. Their is head camp counselor Mel (Mike Kellin) who is gruff but likeable…to a point, plus two really stand up counselors Ronnie (Paul DeAngelo) and Susie (Susan Glaze). Angela is a very shy girl bordering on the point of being catatonic as we first get to know her, she won’t talk to anyone including the counselors (which Judy takes offense at) and her first couple of days at the camp she won’t even eat. Which leads to a very nasty encounter with the Camp’s head chef Artie (Owen Hughes) who is a pedophile but luckily Ricky arrives in the nick of time before anything further can take place. This is the point in the film we find out that someone is watching out for Angela and will kill those that threaten her or make her life miserable.

Sleepaway Camp really is a great representative of the slasher genre and in truth there is so much I want to talk about in the film but I refuse to spoil anything more. So instead I will point out the amazing bonus features that Scream Factory has packed into the 2 disc set.

New 2K scan of the original camera negative
New Commentary with actors Felissa Rose (“Angela”) and Jonathan Tiersten (“Ricky”)
New Commentary with writer/director Robert Hiltzik, moderated by webmaster Jeff Hayes
Original Audio Commentary with writer/director Robert Hiltzik and star Felissa Rose
At the Waterfront After the Social: The Legacy of Sleepaway Camp – new interviews with Robert Hiltzik, Felissa Rose, Jonathan Tiersten, Paul DeAngelo (“Ronnie”), Karen Fields (“Judy”), Desiree Gould (“Aunt Martha”), Frank Saladino (“Gene”) and make-up FX artist Ed French.
Judy – a short film by Jeff Hayes starring Karen Fields
Princess – A Music Video by Jonathan Tiersten
Camp Arawak Scrapbook – still gallery
Theatrical Trailer & TV Spots

With that 2K scan of the film it has never looked better though there are a few moments you will see some scratches in the film since they used the original negative, but these are so minor you’ll barely notice the few times they pop up.

Sleepaway Camp is very much worthy of your attention, it has the 80s gore and the gut churning but pleasurable revulsion that all good horror films make you feel in my opinion. You can still follow the link provided up top to pre-order your copy today!


Editor at Retroist
Searching through the alleys for useful knowledge in the city of Nostalgia. Huge cinema fanatic and sometimes carrier of the flame for the weirding ways of 80s gaming, toys, and television. When his wife lets him he is quite happy sitting in the corner eating buckets of beef jerky.

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