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Disaster Porn Saturday Night: Ghostquake (aka Haunted High)

After surviving an earthquake and aftershocks, Quentin (Jonathon Baron) Ortiz (Danny Trejo) and Whitney (Lauren Whitney Pennington) not only have to find a way out of the school, but fight demons along the way

After surviving an earthquake and aftershocks, Quentin (Jonathon Baron) Ortiz (Danny Trejo) and Whitney (Lauren Whitney Pennington) not only have to find a way out of the school, but fight demons along the way

With Halloween right around the corner and in keeping with the disaster/horror theme, comes a really good movie with subtle references to many disaster and horror movies.

History teacher Mr. Myers (Ricky Wayne) is in the middle of a lecture on the occult and paranormal stuff when he catches Quentin Smith (Jonathon Baron) sketching Whitney (Lauren Whitney Pennington) in his notebook just as the bell rings.

The creepy teacher stands in the doorway of his classroom as he watches Quentin at his locker, looking at some coins. Whitney asks him is he wants to help with the prom decorating (surely not a good sign) when a panicked Amber (Chelsea Morgan Thomas) asks Whitney if she'll help her with some homework.

Mr. Myers comes over to Quentin and tells him he needs to show him something in the boiler room and Quentin willingly goes with him.

In the boiler room, he confronts him by telling him that he knows the truth about his family and wants the coins. Quentin fumbles with them and after dropping them, he thinks that he's collected all of them, but Myers had one hiding under his shoe.

After Quentin goes back upstairs, a pentagram is drawn and Myers is killed, but upstairs, Whitney asks Amber if she felt a small tremor. Amber reminds her that she's not in California anymore and heads to the gym.

Later that night while still decorating in the gym, jock Dean (Gabe Begneaud) tells Amber and Whitney about what his father told him when he was a student at the school. Whitney reminds him that the sacrificing of students at the private school is nothing but an urban legend and after Amber complains about it being late, she tells her that if they keep talking, they won't get everything done before the prom.

Over in the music room, Kimberly (Stephanie Fischer) China (Danielle Greenup) and Dex (Brett Lapeyrouse) are rehearsing an original song for graduation with Mr. Garland (Griff Furst).

Breaking into the school are computer wizard Blake (Shawn Phillips) Stu (Jaren Mitchell) Rob (Sergio Figueroa) and Colt (Marc Donato). Even though Blake was ordered by the court not to go anywhere near a computer, Colt threatens him and has the other two boys come along since they want their grades changed as well.

They break into a vent that leads to the kitchen and once everyone (but Rob) is inside, the first earthquake hits, around the time that the librarian (Charisma Carpenter) is murdered by Alger Danforth's demon lover (Misty Marshall).

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Since earthquakes are uncommon in New England, Blake, Stu and Colt head for the office after believing that Rob chickened out and left. They don't know that the spirit of Alger Danforth (M.C. Gainey) just roasted him in the collapsed vent.

While the school doesn't have any earthquake plans in place, principal Spiro (Mike Kimmel) and coach Hoover (Dana Gourrier) decide to evacuate the school and check to make sure that there aren't any other students in the building. (This part in the movie really didn't make sense since it seems like it's pretty late in the evening, so why would there be a lot of students in the building?)

Following the quake, Ortiz (Danny Trejo) raises the spirit of his dead sister Marisol (Amanda Vaez Phillips) who was the last victim of Danforth's cult. She could be the only link that can destroy Danforth, but he's locked in the janitor's closet, as are all of the doors to the school.

Mr. Garland leads his students to a locked door and leaves them there so that he can try to find another way out of the building.

Danforth summons Spiro and Hoover to the science lab just before an aftershock hits and the pickled frogs fall from their jars and come to life on the floor. They fight the Frankenfrogs and Spiro is murdered shortly thereafter.

Kimberly, who has a massive crush on Mr. Garland goes to look for him and she finds him in a trance heading toward the showers. She follows him and taking the opportunity she starts to get undressed before she meets her fate.

Following another aftershock, China and Dex meet up with the prom committee and Danforth tries to take their souls but is unsuccessful, just as Blake and Colt find the group.

They find out that Danforth is Quentin's grandfather, and they think that he too is a serial killer and responsible for the murders that they've come across.

Quentin is possessed by his grandfather and does battle with Ortiz and now wants Whitney since he's found a host to keep him alive.

This is a fun movie but light on the disaster and whenever there's an aftershock, the actors just seem to move around and take cover while the camera shakes a little bit. The only "damage" is when a ceiling tile falls and Mr. Garland saves Kimberly, which adds more fuel to her romantic fire.

On the horror side, the kills are somewhat inventive, and they're done off camera, plus the special effects are pretty good as well.

The story is entertaining enough and as I said earlier, there's a few subtle references to classic disaster and horror movies. It might be a little cheesy, but it's a fun little movie.

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