Rayzor’s Review: The Sleeper (2012)

More Indie Horror goodness!

I had the chance to finally check out the Sleeper.  This is kind of an older Indie horror movie that kind of fell into obscurity after it was released in 2012.  Justin Seaman, director of the Barn, talked with us about really loving this film when he saw it and worked to get it released to a wider audience with Scream Team Releasing.  Thanks to Scream Team Releasing, The Sleeper has new life and hopefully we can help bring this 80s style slasher to more horror fans.

Synopsis via IMDB.com:

It’s 1981 and the girls of Alpha Gamma Theta sorority are having a party. As the new pledges arrive, so does an uninvited guest. Little do the sisters know someone is watching them in the shadows. As the girls shower, study, eat and sleep the stalker studies the girls. One by one he finds the girls at their most vulnerable and murders them. The police hunt for the missing girls and their killer, but will they find them in time? Or will the girls be forced to fight for their lives…

Filmed over 13 days and nights in February 2011, the Sleeper is a 80s throw back, filled with nostalgia.  There is something about the way the movie looks and feels that takes me to The House of the Devil from 2009.  Both filmed in the 2000s, but perfectly capture the look of the early 80s.  I’ll have to hand it to Justin Russell for nailing the look and it is not just on screen visuals.  I am really kind of pissed that this movie has been overlooked for so long.

The things I want to talk about with this movie, the acting, the directing and the cinematography were so good.  This Indie film has the looks of a bigger budget, not huge budget, but bigger budget horror movie.  We at THS have talked about Art the Clown from the Terrifier becoming one of the next horror icons, like Freddy Krueger, Michael Myers or Jason Voorhees.  But, seriously, I think the Sleeper could have a place on this list as well.  Some of the little things he did, having pictures of each victim he planned to go after, drawing the letter “Z” over their face, kind of telling what may happen to the victims.  The prank calls take us back to the days of films like Black Christmas or When a Stranger Calls.

As the synopsis says if follows the girls of Alpha Gamma Theta and a pledge named Amy.  The best part is, Amy and most of the rest of the cast, were cast perfectly and one big stand out, they did not suck at acting.  Jason Jay Crabtree plays the killer or the “Sleeper”, he was great, with each kill, great effects and a great campus chase.  If this movie was released, the year it took place, the Sleeper would be up there with the Prowler, My Bloody Valentine and others.  I really enjoyed this movie and it is one of the better Indie Horror films I have seen since the Horror Syndicate began in 2016, which there are so many now.

Oh, yeah there is a disco dance scene and a great basketball montage.

One last thing I need to mention, the effects.  They were damned good, one slit neck with the claw end of a hammed was really brutal.  There were head smashes and very good hammer smashes.  Yes, while the Sleeper may not seem like it, it brings the gore.  Truly good effects in this one.

It has been 6 years since the release and it feels like there should be a sequel, perhaps set in 7 years later, in 1988 maybe.

IMDB.com has a rating of 4.0, IMDB raters must not like Indie Horror, come on!

I rate the Sleeper with a 7.8, this is a great Indie Horror film that needs more respect and a wider audience.  Check The Sleeper out, just fucking buy the damned movie.  Perhaps, we can get Justin Russell out there and make the long awaited sequel.

Click the image below to get your copy of the Sleeper.


About Ray Marek III 698 Articles
I have been watching horror films since I was 6 years old. The story, one Saturday night, my mom and I were watching movies and she fell asleep on the couch. We had the channel set on HBO and the movie we were watching ended and the next one, A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge. This was some time in 1986. I watched then entire film, I was sitting on the edge of my seat. When my mom woke, she asked me what just ended and I told her, “Freddy”. That was all I talked about for weeks and finally she broke down and rented more horror films for me. She rented, the Texas Chainsaw Massacre part 2, Re-Animator, Friday the 13th VI: Jason Lives and Halloween II. I watched all and fell in love with horror films forever. 5 Horror Films to Watch Inferno (1980) A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) The Beyond (1981) Friday the 13th VI: Jason Lives (1986) Horror of Dracula (1958)