Archie (Scott Grimes) is having a tough senior year. His dad died and left his half of the family mortuary to Archie’s druncle, who is played with vulgar verve by Gomez Addams. Uncle Gomez has to pay for Archie’s college as part of the business agreement, but only if Archie can manage not to get himself fired from the funeral home before graduation.
On top of that, the local badass jocks (one of whom is played by a rug pee-er from The Big Lebowski) and their bitchy cheerleader girlfriends keep tormenting Archie for the crime of being smart. And as anyone who ever went to high school can tell you, there is only one thing worse than a bunch of snotty prep assholes who play pranks on you.
That one thing? The reanimated, murderous corpses of those same snotty preps. Yep, after the big dance they wrecked their Porsche into a truck full of that good old 80s zombifier, industrial waste. After Archie embalms them, lightning strikes the funeral home and brings his old enemies back to life, so he gets to spend the rest of the night running away from/trying to destroy them with the help of his one friend, the beautiful but tomboyish girl (that chick who put her pearls in the microwave in Pump Up the Volume) from the service station down the road. It’s an all-out late 80s darkly humorous gorefest for your ass.
Besides being a sucker for the old love story between the geek and the tomboy, which plays out here sort of like Some Kind of Wonderful Zombies, I really like that Night Life doesn’t do the usual thing with horror and pranks. Archie is neither killed by the pranks, nor does he become a murderer because he’s butthurt about them. No real surprises to be found here, just a fun, grossout, coming-of-age B-horror movie. You know you want to see it.