Title: I Know What You Did Last Summer
Released: 1997

Source Material
Title: I Know What You Did Last Summer
Author: Lois Duncan
Published: 1973


After reviewing campy teen thriller I Know What You Did Last Summer, I thought why not check of the movie version? It’s been over a decade, maybe it’s time to revisit. Also, it streams instantly on Netflix, so it was hard to say no. If you’re interested in watching it yourself, I came up with a handy dandy drinking game that would have made this movie much more enjoyable.

The Official FYA I Know What You Did Last Summer Movie Drinking Game

Take a drink any time:

  • You see a hook/a hook is mentioned
  • Freddie says something very earnestly
  • Ryan says something mean
  • David Egan is mentioned
  • Someone screams 


  • For the duration JLove’s midriff is on screen

With those rules in mind, let’s get to the movie!

We open our movie with panoramic shot of the ocean and rocky shore. Pretty, but ominous, obviously. Scary sounding late 90s alternative rock music begins playing. Scroll up to man sitting alone at the edge of a cliff. He appears intoxicated and is wearing very sexy waders. He looks like a poor man’s Rider Strong. Which, is confusing, because isn’t Rider Strong kinda the poor man’s Rider Strong? Maybe not in 1997. He plays with a mysterious silver keychain thingy. Somehow this keychain thingy will be important later.

Ooooo fireworks! Change of scene! We’re in the town and it’s a fourth of July celebration. It just occurs to me this is set in some coastal New England fishing village, as opposed to someone in the generic Southwest like the book.

Small town beauty pageant. Sarah Michelle Geller is in the competition. Jennifer Love Hewitt, Freddie Prinze Jr. and Ryan Phillippe are in the audience. The boys are talking about how large Sarah’s breasts are. This is weird and confusing because JLove is sitting right by them and she obviously has the more impressive breasts, no? Sarah wins, natch.

Now we’re on to some very large outdoor bar sponsored kegger. Darlene’s Boyfriend is offering JLove a shooter. She rejects and naturally, he is angry because somehow being JLove’s childhood friend means he deserves both her time and vagina. Clearly his character exists to be some sort of future red herring, possible murderer, definite misogynist.

Our four heroes are hanging out on the beach. Telling urban legends. About a man with a hook. Foreshadowing, perhaps? Aww Freddie earnestly believes in the story. JLove says please, it’s a fictional story created to warn young girls about the dangers of having premarital sex. Oh great. I love it when ‘feminism’ is considered a character trope. I still personally blame Saved By The Bell/Jesse Spano for making girls of my generation refused to call themselves feminists.

Freddie is earnestly talking about how much he’ll miss JLove. He says “did you know the success rate of high school sweethearts, it’s higher than any other type of relationships?” That can’t possibly be true. JLove asks for evidence, and I’m not positive, but I believe he points to his heart. Possibly his boner. Either way, I can taste my dinner in the back of my throat. JLove and Freddie precede to participate in some of that premarital sex I’ve been hearing so much about.

The ‘beach’ part of this seems like a terrible idea.

My husband is weighing in now. He thinks it’s a big deal that JLove and Sarah are in the same movie. I do not, because I don’t think either were very famous yet. He is now arguing that they were and that after he saw Can’t Hardly Wait*, he thought JLove was the hottest woman in the world. How long do you get to annul a marriage again?

*The internet tells me that IKWYDLS came out before Can’t Hardly Wait. I win. Always.

Now that Freddie and JLove have copulated, it’s time to go home. Responsible and earnest designated driver Freddie drives Ryan’s car. Drunk asshole Ryan distracts him. Large thud. Whoops, looks like they hit a human. None of them seem to want to go to jail for that pesky manslaughter thing. Obviously the solution is to dump the body. They think this will wash all the evidence away. Five seasons of Bones has proven to me how unlikely that is! Uh oh, Darlene’s boyfriend drives by. I see blackmail in the future.

Our four heroes take said body down to the water. The not-so-dead body wakes up and grabs at Sarah. Instead of being happy he’s alive, they beat at him some more and dump him. Not very nice at all. Angry drunk Ryan makes them agree to a pact, not to tell anyone. To take it to their graves. The camera zooms to a now abandoned silver keychain thingy. Am I to believe this body was poor man’s Ryder? Because the body looked about 40 years older than the sad drunk cliff sitting man.

ONE YEAR LATER. College! JLove puts on her best acting skills to show us all how sad and damaged she is from being forced to dump a body. Oh good, she has a sass-talking Person of Color roommate. I bet the producers patted themselves on the back for that one. POC roommate drives JLove home for the summer. Her work is done here.

The saddest sack that ever sacked.

JLoves movie mom comes out to hug her. Fictional mom is very well endowed and I’m starting to think that is why she was casted. In case we weren’t aware already from the continous sad pout, JLove is depressed because we see her picking at her food. Only happy, non-murderers get hungry! Turns out JLove’s grades weren’t very good her freshman year. Her mom pulls the ‘your father would be rolling in his grave’ line and instantly wins my worst mother of the year award. I hope she’s one of the first to get hooked.

I took this screenshot just for the hat and the teddy.

The ominous hand-addressed letter arrives. Wait, WHAT, her address says North Carolina. So…not New England? Apparently. The letter says I Know What You Did Last Summer and I like to think someone slut shaming her for having sex with Freddie Prinze Jr. But probably not.


I remember thumb rings. 1997!

JLove visits Sarah at the local home goods store to show her the note. Apparently Sarah’s beauty-queen dream of becoming some sort of did not work out so well. They go visit Ryan of the perpetual wife-beater, who is as big an asshole as ever. Ryan decides the note was from Darlene’s boyfriend and proceeds to threaten. I doubt it’s him, but he is awful and deserves a good scare. An ice hook is involved. Please, keep beating us over the head with this ice hook motif. They go visit Freddie, who passed on college and is now a fisherman. JLove is still pissed at him for his involvement in the whole dumping a dead body thing. Girl, get over it. She is also wearing overalls.

Back to Darlene’s boyfriend. HOLY jesus he just got hooked! I’m confused as to why he was killed. He had nothing to do with the hit and run. Granted, I don’t feel bad because I’m 90% sure he will some day murder prostitutes for fun. But it still doesn’t really seem fair.

That seems a bit uncomfortable.

Cut to Ryan boxing at some oddly empty gym. Gratuitous sweaty boxing shots, followed by gratuitous showering. I am starting to see what in this movie appealed to my 12 year old self. Ryan finds a note in his locker. Mysterious killer man has stolen his car keys and Ryan runs after him. This is a highly intelligent choice, because the man proceeds to run Ryan over with his own car. Ha!

Cut to the hospital and insured Ryan. Obviously our killer is just fucking with our intrepid heroes at this point. I suppose, what’s the fun in an elaborate revenge plot if it is all over too early? JLove wants to go to the police, natch, but Ryan refuses. I think everyone is taking this pact thing a little too seriously. This isn’t Harry Potter and this isn’t an Unbreakable Vow here, but apparently I know little to nothing about murder pacts. Our heroes think that maybe the person behind this is a relative of the guy they killed. Not a bad conclusion.

JLove and Sarah go visit Dead David’s (name of the guy they killed) and meet his sister. His sister is Anne Heche! They are no closer to finding out who is revenge killing on behalf of Dead David. They are also terrible detectives and liars. It depresses JLove to see the family she helped destroy. She proceeds to takes this out on everyone else because she’s a biiitch.

Anne Heche and her dead brother appear to be channeling their inner Cathy and Chris.

Back at Sarah’s house. Her alcoholic dad is watching television. Her heinous older sister is reminding her of what a beauty queen has-been she is. A has-been? At 19? That’s a bit harsh. Also, movie! Don’t make me feel sympathy for these characters! Our mysterious killer waits until Sarah is sleeping and cuts off her wig. Poor, sad ex-beauty queen.

The next morning JLove drives over to comfort poor, wigless Sarah. On the way she hears rattling in her car. She pulls over and opens her trunk to find dead Darlene’s Boyfriend! And, umm, a bunch of crabs! She gets Ryan and Sarah only to find the body and the crabs gone. Which, uh, you’d think the truck would be at least a little dirty. Or wet. You know, from the crabs and leaky dead body. This killer is clearly a goddamn mastermind of fuckery. Maybe he is A’s mentor? Her fuckery sensei.

So much midriff.

At this point, Ryan irrationally decides the killer is Freddie. I mean, really? You think your old best friend ran you over with a car? Freddie is much, much too earnest for any of that. JLove decides she will go back to brother-lover Anne Heche and find out more information. Upon further investigation, turns out Dead David received a similar threatening letter. He had accidentally killed his fiancee(?) exactly one year before in a car accident(?) So the murder is clearly dead fiancee’s hook-loving father. And obviously the man they hit with their car wasn’t David (no WONDER he no longer looked like poor man’s Rider Strong) but the man who made Dead David dead. It’s all coming together! What a small crazy world! But on the plus side, now JLove can start eating again because she no longer need to feel bad about hit and running that guy. Because he’s 1) not dead and 2) like totally a jerk.

Cut back to Fourth of July town celebrations. Sarah is riding in a sea shell on a parade float. Because beautiful people get to be in parades. On to the beauty pageant where Sarah must relinquish her crown. Ryan watches from the audience and is totally hook murdered right before our eyes. Obviously no one but Sarah sees this and the police won’t believe her. Because she is a hysterical young woman and we all know that hysterical young women are NOT to be believed. Don’t you worry though, as is want to happen in horror movies, all nonbelievers will be punished with an untimely death.

Like the goddamn birth of Venus.

Idiot policeman is murdered and now Sarah is officially on the run. Sarah runs to the store where she and her sister work. Her sister is there, working late, and continues to fight valiantly for the title of Worst Sister, ever by taking about 30 goddamn seconds to open to the door for her being-chased-by-a-murderer sister. And then is an asshole and doesn’t believe her. Don’t worry, she will be gutted for her arrogance. God, I hereby promise, that if anyone I know tells me they’re being hunted by a murdered, I will believe them, until evidence proves otherwise. Sarah proceeds to amaze me by running from this slow moving killer and making no attempt to defend herself or hurt him. But then, it wouldn’t be a scary movie if people weren’t idiots. If they did what they were supposed to, the movie would be over in 10-15 minutes. Which would be a damn shame.

JLove uses the power of the internet to confirm who the killer is. It’s Dead David’s Dead Fiancee’s fisherman dad! She finds Freddy to go tell him. And then, for reasons I won’t even go into because they are so stupid they hurt my brain, she decides Freddy is the killer. EVEN THOUGH SHE JUST FIGURED OUT WHO THE KILLER IS. And proceeds to run from Freddy. And get on a BOAT with a random fisherman. Who happens to have a kill shrine devoted to her and her friends. I am actually so enraged now. The fact that JLove gets to be this stupid and survive is a crime against nature. The only one who should live is earnest Freddie.

All of this, of course, leads to a 15 minute clusterfuck of mind-numbing proportions. Obviously JLove runs around screaming, finds an excuse to wear less clothes and distract poor Freddie who is trying to save her against her own best efforts. At some point the murder says Let me give you some advice, when you leave a man for dead, make sure he’s really dead. That’s actually some good advice! I mean, if you were to take anything away from this movie, it should be that.

This is the face of a girl who does not deserve to live.

Some how through all the ridiculousness, they manage to sever fisher-murderer’s hand. And he falls into the water, where he most obviously does not die. Didn’t he tell you to make sure he was dead, like a minute ago? Why don’t these people learn?

Cut to being back on the docks, with the police dicking around and checking out the crime scene. Freddie is earnestly holding JLove, while they are wrapped in a survivor blanket. He says I love you Julie, no one understands me the way you do. She says I understand your pain. Wait, what? Not quite an I love you too, but I guess he’ll take it?

ONE YEAR LATER! Back at college! JLove is bubbly and happy as seen by her shinier hair and jauntily hung bath towel. She is (presumably) talking to Freddie on a very large cell phone. Life is good! Except in the shower, she sees this:

Srsly? That’s how you’re going to go out?

And the fish-murderer jumps through the glass…and….end scene. That’s it. That’s how they’re leaving it. A goddamn cliff hanger. I want my five dollars back that I paid in 1997! Really, that is just the worst.

If you made it this far, congratulations! Your prize is that you get to sign into your Netflix account and add this to your instant queue. We’re all winners.

Megan is an unabashed fangirl who is often in a state of panic about her inability to watch, read and play all the things.