High School Hellcats

I watched the two movies in last week's post because I was in the mood for something ridiculous - I should have just watched this.

High School Hellcats (1958) starring Yvonne Lime, Bret Halsey, and Jana Lund. It's "part of a series of exploitation films about juvenile delinquents produced during the 1950s by American International Pictures" and I think this is actually the first time I've watched an exploitation film. It seems like Netflix has a ton of them on instant at the moment, so I'll probably watch a few more (if they'll be as strange / absurd as this one is).

These are the Hellcats - a girl gang that somehow manages to be horrifying and lame all at the same time. The one in the sweater that makes her look like a strawberry is the leader.
This is Joyce - the "heroine" of this majestic picture. She's new in school and quite innocent, but she's feeling ever so neglected by her parents (her mom's always playing bridge instead of cooking dinner and her dad won't let her do anything and sometimes dramatically slaps her). Due to her lack of support at home, she gets sucked into a new family - THE HELLCATS! AHHHHH! The horror.
Here's queen of the Hellcats telling Joyce to wear slacks to school the next day. "Everyone will!" - yeah right: everyone wears skirts like they're required to, Joyce gets in trouble and ends up skipping class. This little stunt is step one in Joyce's Hellcats initiation. 
Their teacher. Played by the same woman who voices Drizella in Cinderella.
The second-in-command Hellcat. She's a little off her gourd.
There's the slacks I mentioned. She can't go home after she leaves school, so she goes to a diner.....
.... and meets this handsome romantic prospect (he's the good influence, the Hellcats are the bad). Of course, she could also just hang out with some non-Hellcat-girls, but that option is never considered or presented.
SHE'S SO NEGLECTED! FORCED INTO A GIRL GANG DUE TO PARENTAL NEGLIGENCE! My eyes were practically swimming in tears of pity. I can still feel the salt residue on my upper cheeks.
The gang holds their meetings in an old run-down movie theater.
Time for initiation round two....
She's in!
And this one is not so pleased about the gang's newest member. The jealousy begins to (not-so-surreptitiously) boil behind that grumpy grimace. 
Meanwhile, romance blooms (even though he loathes his ladylove's pals).
All dressed up and off to a party.
Little does she realize that they're holding the party illegally in an innocent stranger's home.
Little does she know that the party will end in MURDER!!!!!

(Grumpish pug girl shoves the leader down the stairs - not the most surefire way to off someone, but I guess it works out for her.)
Joyce: innocent, but not so innocent that she goes to the police. Nope. Just leaves the party and the corpse at the bottom of the stairs. 
Nutso thinks that Joyce DID go to the cops though. Uh oh.
She leaves a note for Joyce telling her about a meeting. DON'T GO JOYCE! IT'S A TRICK!
Crazy girl attempts to knife Joyce to death in order to avoid police capture.
Unfortunately, she ends up plummeting to her death over the balcony of the Hellcat's movie theater. RIP. Thus Joyce escapes the Hellcats, her teacher calls up her parents and gives them a light lecture, the parents realize that their SHEER ABUSE caused their daughter to cross over to the dark side, and they repent by letting Joyce and her boytoy into the house. All is right in the world.

Moral of the story - better to be a Pink Lady than a Hellcat.
See all the previous movie posts here.