Movie Review: April Fools Day (1986)

by StevenHelmer

A review of the 1986 mystery/thriller starring Deborah Foreman and Amy Steel.

Synopsis: A group of college students agree to join one of their classmates at her parents' island mansion. Since it is the weekend of April Fools Day, they spend their time pulling pranks on each other. However, their fun soon turns to terror as members of their group are murdered. Since the only way off of the island is by boat, they must find a way to survive until help arrives.


My wife and I finished "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" earlier than expected and, since neither of us was quite ready to go to bed yet, we ended up watching this movie too. This is one I had heard about and, even though I could have sworn we had watched it once, was a film we hadn't seen. As it turns out, it was a pretty decent movie.

The thing I really liked about this movie was the mystery. It's pretty obvious, from very early on in the film, who is behind the murders. But, because it was a little too obvious, it also became apparent there was more going on than the writers were revealing.

As a result of this, my wife and I were much more engrossed in the film than we normally would expect to be. We were even debating our own theories about what was really happening on that island (it turns out I was right but she was also partially right).

The movie also worked surprisingly well as a thriller too, mostly because the remoteness of the mansion, coupled by the mystery about the murderer's motives kept the suspense built up just enough to keep us on our toes while watching it. We weren't sure when walking into a dark room would result in someone getting their head chopped off or would be an uneventful experience.

One thing that did surprise me quite a bit about this film was the relative lack of gratuitous sex I would normally expect to see in a movie from this genre and era. There were plenty of sexual references and one or two (relatively mild) sex scenes. But, unlike many other movies, it never reached a point where it was distracting us from the main plot. In other words, the writers seemed to realize they had a good movie and didn't risk messing it up by throwing in a bunch of unnecessary fluff.

Final Opinion

This movie definitely exceeded my expectations last night and is just unique enough to be worth taking the time to watch at least once.

My Grade: A

More By This Writer

Love Poems for My Wife

When Steve first met Cynthia back in 2000, he knew she was the woman for him and proposed to her just three months after their first date. Married to her since 2003, he has ofte...

View on Amazon

Angels Don't Always Have Wings: A Sinner's Poems of Faith

Steve never thought of himself as an overly religious person and had rarely set foot inside of a church. However, after agreeing to attend a service following a visit to a churc...

View on Amazon

Updated: 04/03/2020, StevenHelmer
Thank you! Would you like to post a comment now?


Only logged-in users are allowed to comment. Login

You might also like

Movie Review: Poltergeist II: The Other Side (1986)

A review of the 1986 horror movie starring Craig T. Nelson and Heather O'Rourke.

Movie Review: Armed and Dangerous (1986)

A review of the 1986 action/comedy starring John Candy and Eugene Levy.

Movie Review: Hoosiers (1986)

A review of the 1986 movie starring Gene Hackman as an embattled high school ...

Disclosure: This page generates income for authors based on affiliate relationships with our partners, including Amazon, Google and others.
Loading ...