Austria's answer to "I Know What You Did Last Summer," "Dead in Three Days" (or "In 3 Tagen bist du tot") is an excellent slasher film that starts off by-the-numbers before morphing into a really unique and very effective horror ride. It's probably the best slasher film to come out of Europe since Alex Aja's now classic gore fest "High Tension."
During its first act, in which a group of recent teen graduates party, have sex and act like typical horror-cannon-fodder idiots, you wonder if this film isn't gong to be just another watered down snooze fest. But once the first body drops, in the water of a local lake to be exact, the storyline picks up and the tone of the film shifts from light to intense. Very intense. Alex Aja "High Tension" intense.
We're never sure if the film's main protagonist, a blonde party animal (Sabrina Reiter) who lost her boyfriend to the killer, isn't really just some kind of madwoman whose convinced herself there's a killer on the loose -- while she's doing the murders herself.
After all, she's still guilt ridden about what she and her group of friends -- all of whom have been targeted with threatening text messages -- "did last summer", or actually many, many summers ago during their childhood, when they contributed to the death of a child.
While the film has a simple plot that borrows way too much from "IKWYDLS," down to the hood worn by the killer, co-directors Prochaska and St. John really deliver some powerful moments using simple silence and get great performances from their young cast. This film is actually way better than the Kevin Williamson 1990s horror film it borrows so heavily from.
It took three long years for this film finally to make its way to DVD in the U.S. With a "Part 2" already finished in Germany, you know it's only a matter of time before some U.S. studio cooks up a remake.