Taglines: Some kids are dying to graduate…
During a high school track meet at Midvale High School, female runner named Laura Ramstead (Ruth Ann Llorens), is pushed by the crowd and her demanding coach. Apparently, Laura collapses after crossing the finish line and is announced to be dead upon examination.
Days later, Laura’s sister Anne Ramstead (Patch Mackenzie) returns from the US Navy to visit her mother (Beverly Dixon) and her stepfather Ronald (Hal Boker) in town. After being dropped off from a truck driver, she notices a girl named Paula running into a wooded area, who is then killed by an assailant wearing black gloves and having a stopwatch.
At the school, the assailant steals a photo of the track team and crosses out Paula’s face after circling Laura’s face. Meanwhile, Anne arrives home, planning to leave after graduation day, and discusses with her mother about Laura’s demise. After, Anne unpacks her belongs upstairs including a gray sweatshirt and a pair of black gloves.
Track member Sally (Denise Cheshire) is walking through the woods and encounters Anne, who is heading for the auditorium as a special guest for a graduation rehearsal. Later, Anne goes to visit Kevin (E. Danny Murphy), who is Laura’s boyfriend. Kevin shows Anne a photo album of Laura, and Anne gives Kevin one of Laura’s track medals in which he thanks her for. Track team mean girl Dolores (Linnea Quigley) seduces a teacher in the music room.
The next day, an unfocused Sally goes to the locker room after trying to concentrate with her gym bar routine, where she is killed by the assailant wearing a fencing mask and ends the stopwatch after 30 seconds. Later, Principal Gugilone (Michael Pataki) slices an apple with a knife, where he puts it in his desk drawer containing a stopwatch and various knives. Inside the school, Anne speaks to Coach Michaels, who is frustrated on being blamed for Laura’s death, when in reality a blood clot in her heart killed her.
Gradution Day (1981)
Directed by: Herb Freed
Starring: Christopher George, Patch Mackenzie, E. Danny Murphy, Michael Pataki, Carmen Argenziano, Beverly Dixon, Denise Cheshire, Vanna White
Screenplay by: Anne Marisse, Herb Freed
Cinematography by: Daniel Yarussi
Film Editing by: Martin Jay Sadoff
Art Direction by: Chris Henry
Music by: Arthur Kempel
Distributed by: Columbia Pictures
Release Date: May 1, 1981