Williamson’s early success with Shout is, unfortunately, a shadow that has hung over his entire career, however, The faculty shows that you can somehow replicate the winning formula. With From dusk to dawn director Roberto Rodriguez Beside him, Williamson gave an interpretation of the classic science fiction novel The body snatchers.
The cast of misfits is largely led by Elijah WoodCasey’s character, and the plot follows an alien invasion of the school. After the presentation of the rest of the main characters, the faculty The biggest problem is immediately apparent: the main cast is too big. Ideally, two of the characters
it should have been cut, or at least relegated to supporting characters who have a line here or there before becoming a host to the parasite. There are three romantic plotlines, what appears to be an attempt to address social issues, and a highly troubled implied student-teacher relationship. The simplicity of the main plot is perfect for a teen setting, giving the writer freedom to create a strong cast of characters, a clear message, and thoughtful relationships. But, The faculty it seems to lack direction and ends up feeling complicated in places.
The savior from what could have been a multi-million dollar disaster is the archetypal characterization of the main cast. Relying on stereotypes can make the stories feel stale, but since this movie doesn’t serve as a character study like the breakfast club, you can get away with leaning into well-known tropes because this creates the illusion of fleshed out characters. So even though the writing is weak in this area, the characters feel familiar, adding to the charm and nostalgia. The faculty it doesn’t try to comment or subvert, it’s genuinely just teen horror. This is not meant to be derogatory, it simply means that the audience doesn’t expect every aspect of the movie to be perfect or clever. This is a cult classic because it’s something of a comforting horror movie: it does exactly what it sounds like it’s going to do, without smoke or mirrors. The formulaic familiarity makes for exciting yet easy viewing, even if it’s highly implausible that Casey and Delilah ended up together.
The intricate nature of the script is also helped by the fact that the movie is genuinely likeable and funny. It’s not trying to be smart; the pacing and premise are great. Feels like an episode leukocyte in feature film form. There are some really nice horror scenes and deaths, like the shower scene with Stan (Shawn Hatosy), and the movie is fun and is a much stronger addition to Williamson’s resume than I know what you did last summer. Rodriguez’s influence creates a cheesy, action-packed B-movie experience. He doesn’t handle the script with deft nuance, which leaves some emotional beats missing, but somehow, it still works.
Outside of the script issues, the movie is a lot of fun to watch. Josh Hartnett and clea duvallRodrigez’s performances are certainly outstanding, and Rodrigez’s over-the-top directing manages to generate a timeless charm, even though the film is firmly rooted in the spirit of ’90s horror. The intense B-movie atmosphere gives The faculty space to be imperfect. It’s a fantastically unserious horror movie rather than just your average mainstream.
release. That’s not to say this movie is unpopular, but by leaning into the silly nature of the script, the cast and crew have managed to create a beloved cult classic.
The plot does not stop at the thematic notion of the ‘other’, or individual autonomy explicitly. But, the school setting provides the idea of mindless conformity that most of the audience would have experienced. This is further enhanced by the monster who turns out to be the new girl with a noticeable southern accent. She embodies the idea of a threat from elsewhere, reminiscent of the political landscape of the 1980s, something much talked about in ’90s horror, even if the film isn’t satire. So, The faculty has some depth, although this is largely due to the body snatchers material on which it is based.
Ultimately, this is a very fun movie, a ’90s teen take on a classic sci-fi story that doesn’t take itself too seriously.
Watch the original trailer for The faculty here, via Miramax: