Movie Review: ‘Totally Killer’ Is A Fun-Filled Horror Flick

October 9, 2023

Written by Kelli Marchman McNeely

Kelli Marchman McNeely is the owner of She is an Executive Producer of "13 Slays Till Christmas" which is out on Digital and DVD and now streaming on Tubi. She has several other films in the works. Kelli is an animal lover and a true horror addict since the age of 9 when she saw Friday the 13th. Email:

Prime Video has now released the time-traveling slasher Totally Killer. I watched it, and I have some thoughts about the movie, directed by Nahnatchka Khan (Always Be My Maybe, “Young Rock”) and starring Kiernan Shipka (“Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” ).


Totally Killer follows Jamie (Shipka), whose mom, Pam (Bowen), is terrorized by the resurgence of the Sweet Sixteen Killer—a masked maniac who slaughtered a group of teenage girls in the ‘80s. With the help of her friend Amelia (Kelcey Mawema), she travels back in time to 1987 and teams up with the teen version of her mom (Holt) to try and stop the killer.


Equal parts horror and comedy, the movie sets out to capture the unique charm of the 1980s. And as someone who was there, I can definitely say they nailed it. It was a time when social sensitivity was lacking; there was no such thing as getting “triggered,” and nobody cared if you chained-smoked in the car with kids who weren’t seatbelted in. The good ol’ days.


The action-packed fick has great pacing with just enough time between action scenes to get to know the characters and to further the story. And when it is time for the killer to go to work, it is brutal with each victim putting up a fight before being stabbed sixteen times. Speaking of the killer, the mask design was a great choice. I like that it has a human face that’s just blank enough to give a feeling of anonymity while being recognizable enough that it could become a popular Halloween mask.


Shipka’s character, Jamie, is both hilarious and badass, facing off with the killer multiple times and putting up one hell of a fight. She makes a great final girl.


For those of you who are gorehounds, you should know that there is enough blood and guts to keep you happy without going overboard.


Each actor nailed their roles of stereotypical 80’s characters or present day people including Olivia Holt (Cruel Summer), Julie Bowen (“Modern Family”), and Randall Park (“Fresh off the Boat”). The casting couldn’t have been better.


Time travel movies are tricky, with many coming across too convoluted or are just too shallow to get it right. Totally Killer is time travel done right, giving viewers a story that’s easy to follow.


Spoiler: When it comes to the killer, it didn’t take me long to know that there is more than one killer. I saw one coming from a mile away however, I didn’t see the identity of one of them coming. It was a nice surprise.


Totally Killer is a fun flick that I highly recommend. Lucky for you, it’s out now from Blumhouse and is streaming on Prime Video.



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