Skip To Content

    I Rewatched "I Know What You Did Last Summer" As An Adult And Had So Many Thoughts

    The ultimate '90s teen slasher.

    Recently I've been revisiting some of the movies I was obsessed with as a teen/pre-teen. I started with Cruel Intentions, moved on to She's All That, and last week watched Can't Hardly Wait. The next logical step was to rewatch the movie that combined all of the stars of those movies – the ultimate '90s teen slasher, I Know What You Did Last Summer. Here's how that experience went down...

    Mandalay Entertainment

    1. I totally forgot this movie opens with that random guy sitting on the edge of a cliff, drinking. He’s Billy Blue, I think? He’s the guy they run over, right? Or they think they run over him, but it turns out to be someone else? His dad, maybe?


    2. This whole cast is perfect. Like, peak ‘90s teen dreamboats. They are all so pretty.


    3. Jennifer Love Hewitt’s character is a feminist! I think I missed that as a kid.


    4. Sarah Michelle Gellar is so good at playing a beauty queen. Her whole look is giving me major Buffy in her pre-slayer days vibes.


    5. I love how supportive of Helen (SMG) the others are. It’s so wholesome. Except for the commentary on her boobs.


    6. Her crown is so pretty.


    7. “It’s all about the hair.” Ah yes, set up the thing she loves the most just to cruelly take it away later.


    8. They’re all talking about their futures with so much excitement, if only they knew it was all going to come crashing down.


    9. ...is this whole movie a metaphor for the wasted potential and lost hopes of your youth?


    10. I forgot Johnny Galecki was in this! He seems like a Nice Guy™. Does he become the baddie in the sequel? I vaguely remember something like that.


    11. Barry (Ryan Phillippe) has serious anger issues.


    12. Why do they all have old people names?

    Mandalay Entertainment

    13. “Let’s move down to Dawson’s Beach.” I just had to google if that was meant to be a Dawson’s Creek reference, but this came out before the show started, so I guess it was just Kevin Williamson recycling names. 


    14. Is it even a teen slasher if they don’t sit around telling each other scary stories?


    15. Nice meta commentary on these stories being morality tales warning girls against pre-marital sex, right before they all have some pre-marital sex.


    16. This is such a cheesy moment between Julie (Jennifer Love Hewitt) and Ray (Freddie Prinze Jr), I can’t decide whether to smile or cringe. 


    17. I like how they’re obviously the SMART and SERIOUS ones because they’re both brunettes, while Helen (Sarah Michelle Gellar) and Barry are all about sex because, duh, they’re blonde. 


    18. Confession: when I was younger I guess I was more into blondes, because I totally shipped Helen and Barry and thought the wrong couple died. 


    19. Helen just called Barry “man meat”, which is also a term Williamson uses in Dawson’s Creek. I know this because it makes my ovaries shudder every time I hear it. 


    20. “I’ll let you do things to me.” Right in front of their salad, Helen?!


    21. Here comes the crash scene! It’s pretty well done. Especially the way Barry is like, “it’s not my blood”. So creepy!


    22. I enjoy that it’s the girls talking sense here.

    Mandalay Entertainment

    23. Barry really loves yelling. 


    24. “I’m not like the rest of you, I don’t have the family or the money to get me out of this.” I forgot there was a whole class divide between Ray and the others.

    25. Here comes Max (Johnny Galecki ). He really is the worst. 


    26. Ray is trying to act chill but he has clearly officially lost all chill.


    27. “Let’s just pretend he’s some escaped lunatic with a hook for a hand.” Sealed your own fate there, Barry.


    28. THE DUDE'S ALIVE!

    29. Helen is freaking out that he got her crown. Is that really the priority in this situation, Helen?


    30. Hahahahaha that shot of the hand with the crown slowly lowering into the water was hilarious.


    31. Wait! Barry’s jumping in TO GET THE CROWN.


    32. HOW IS THIS IMPORTANT RIGHT NOW GUYS?


    33. I guess it ties them to the crime. 


    34. But are they just gonna ignore the fact that this guy is, you know, STILL ALIVE?


    35. What the fuck.

    Mandalay Entertainment

    36. Movies taught me to expect making way more pacts with my friends than I ever have. 


    37. I low-key hate Barry. Why did I like him so much as a kid?


    38. (It was Ryan Phillippe’s pretty, pretty face.)


    39. One year later! Here we gooooooo.


    40. Julie’s hair is stringy and straight, I guess she’s emo now.


    41. I think I had a hat just like that. Nagl.


    42. Did her dad just die? Does this subplot go anywhere?


    43. The first note! Creepy.

    44. Oh man, those cushions are so ‘90s it hurts! What was it with that decade and putting suns on everything.


    45. Helen looks so cute with that headband.


    46. I definitely wore shiny silver nail polish in exactly that shade.


    47. I feel like maybe she didn’t give the acting much of a go if she’s back at home a year later. Although the psychological trauma may have played a part in that.


    48. “Julie, we were so careful.” Were you though?! Like, you literally left the guy there ALIVE.  

    Mandalay Entertainment

    49. Ooft, Ryan Phillippe in that white singlet with those dog tags? You could not get hotter than that, according to my 11-year-old self.  


    50. “‘I know what you did last summer.’ Oooh. What a crock of shit.” It’s weird the lines I was obsessed with as a kid. I remember reciting this one to my friends and cackling with glee. I guess coz the word “shit” is in there.


    51. “You two should check out a mirror once in awhile. You look like shit run over twice.” I also thought that terrible line was truly special. The “shit” factor strikes again.


    52. “You’re a prick.” You tell him, Helen!


    53. Oh, the guy’s name is David Egan? Wait, who is Billy Blue, then? 


    54. I love Helen’s sunglasses. They’re kind of like the ones Sarah Michelle Gellar wore in Cruel Intentions, as well. 


    55. Wait, is Max the bad guy in THIS movie? That doesn’t seem right,


    56. HI RAY! Ok wow he looks so hot in that black singlet, with the messy hair. 


    57. I seriously did not appreciate Freddie Prinze Jr’s hotness enough when I was younger.


    58. I know she’s married to Freddie now, but I remember wishing at the time that Sarah Michelle Gellar was dating Ryan Phillippe instead, purely because of this movie. 


    59. “I don’t want to know you.” You’re breaking Ray’s heart (and mine), Julie. 


    60. Young me was sleeping on these two, honestly.

    Mandalay Entertainment

    61. Wait wait wait MAX is gonna be the first one murdered? 


    62. HE JUST GOT HOOKED RIGHT THROUGH THE CHIN.


    63. Shit, I forgot about this. 


    64. Why is he being killed though? Because he randomly drove past them that night?


    65. Oh shit is the shower scene coming up? That is one I DO remember. 


    66. Boom! Sexually awakening right there. 


    67. “Max, you’re fucking dead.” Why yes, yes he is.


    68. I remember loving Helen’s outfit with the bright green top and the blue necklace. So basic.


    69. Lmao @ this high-tech “net search”. 


    70. Oooh this information about Susie dying two summers ago is jogging my memory. The guy they run over was related to her, right?


    71. Anne Heche is the creepy sister! Why does she have a southern accent when literally no one else in the movie does?


    72. Oh YEAH Billy Blue was Ray, and he secretly visited her. It’s all coming back to me now.


    73. Wait, did he flirt with the creepy sister? She just said they were “sweet on each other”. 


    74. I just jumped out of my seat when she banged on that window.

    Mandalay Entertainment

    75. Helen telling Julie that she misses her is making me so sad. Forget the boys, this is the relationship I care most about in this movie. 


    76. Wow Helen’s dad is so rude. 


    77. Does she not have a mother?


    78. Oh SHIT the bad guy is walking right into her house!


    79. That is the most intensely drunk can of Diet Coke I’ve ever seen. 


    80. I know exactly what is gonna happen here but I’m still nervous.


    81. “Hey, is the washed-up dried-out has-been having a moment?” Wow Helen’s sister is a real bitch. 


    82. “You and your hair. It is so pathetic.” That is a rude line on multiple levels. 


    83. One of my greatest fears when I was younger was that someone was gonna cut my hair off in the middle of the night. It started because of Drop Dead Fred, but this movie certainly didn’t help. 


    84. How did she sleep through that, though? 


    85. Julie’s finally wearing her blue twinset, what an iconic look. 


    86. Oh THERE’S Max! Wait, so he was killed just for a prank on Julie? This killer is so extra. 


    87. Freddie Prinze Jr really isn’t in this movie much hey.

    Mandalay Entertainment

    88. How did the killer get the crabs – and the dead body – out of Julie’s car so quickly?


    89. “What are you waiting for huh?!?!” Ah, the most re-enacted scene in the whole movie. 


    90. It’s July 4th! THAT’S what he’s been waiting for. 


    91. “I’m not interested in what’s right anymore, I wanna do what’s smart.” Okay, Julie. 


    92. You know Julie suddenly cares about living again, because her hair is more bouncy and curly. 


    93. Meanwhile, Hook Guy gave Helen a pretty damn good hair cut. 


    94. I was SO OBSESSED with the dress she wears for the parade when I first watched this. The colour! The cut! The cowl! The diamanté straps! It's perfect.

    95. Lmao Barry is literally riding in the parade.


    96. Aw that was a cute moment between them. 


    97. Barry probably just accidentally killed another old guy by crash-tackling him. 


    98. I feel like those slickers are kinda common around this town, no?


    99. Yep, everyone is wearing them. 


    100. Oh shit she’s spotted him for real.

    Mandalay Entertainment

    101. Julie, I thought you said you wanted to do the smart thing. Telling creepy Anne Heche what happened is not the smart thing. 


    102. Ding ding ding she’s finally putting it all together. It was Susie’s FATHER that they hit! He murdered David Egan, too! I can’t believe I forgot this plot. 


    103. It’s so cruel how they bring Barry and Helen together again, just in time for her to watch him be murdered. 


    104. This scene is so well done, and absolutely chilling. 


    105. How was there not more blood up there, though?


    106. And they take away her crown! That’s what she’s really crying about. 


    107. “You little shit-stick Mayberry-ass reject, there’s been a murder, and you’re gonna fry in hell if you ignore it.” Sarah Michelle Gellar’s delivery of that line was so good. 


    108. Of course they’re not listening to her, she’s a woman. 


    109. THAT’S HIM YOU TERRIBLE COP. 


    110. Sarah Michelle Gellar is REALLY good at screaming. 


    111. She broke through that car window like a professional survivor. 


    112. Benjamin Willis is not a very iconic name for a murderer. No wonder I couldn’t remember it.

    Mandalay Entertainment

    113. This bit where Helen is banging on the door of the shop, trying to get away from the killer, always scared me the most. 


    114. I’m not mad Helen’s sister was killed, she was the worst. 


    115. GET OUT OF THERE HELEN. 


    116. Sarah Michelle Gellar has been screaming for at least 17 minutes.  


    117. Why are killers in these things always so unbothered? Like they’re so above running. 


    118. Why is she so surprised that he just took the stairs? 


    119. Helen just jumped out of a building! She really deserved to survive.


    120. She gets so close to freedom! IT’S SO MEAN.


    121. But she’s not going down without a fight. Buffy would never.


    122. I’m actually really upset rn. 


    123. I can’t believe they tried to make us think Ray was the killer lol. 


    124. Julie you fool! THAT’S THE BAD GUY. 


    125. When did this guy have time to get all these photos developed?!


    126. Why didn’t he kill Ray?

    Mandalay Entertainment

    127. How does Julie survive this?!


    128. Jennifer Love Hewitt is not quite as good at screaming as Sarah Michelle Gellar 


    129. Ray is coming to the rescue! With no weapons or anything! 
That seems smart. Ahem.

    130. This boat is like a Tardis, it’s giant inside.


    131. Is the slicker the key to the killer’s super powers? Because suddenly without it he’s being beaten by Ray’s punches, despite still having a huge-ass hook in his hand. 


    132. Don’t distract Ray, Julie! That’s how you’re gonna get him killed!


    133. Put the barrel back in front of the door, goddammit. 


    134. Oh no, she’s breaking up the twinset.


    135. Yeeah coz that ice is really gonna stop him from opening that door, Julie.


    136. Hahahahaha those mannequins of Sarah Michelle Gellar and Ryan Phillippe are baaaad.


    137. How was Hook Guy so good at getting around whole buildings to chase after Helen, but now he can’t even navigate his own damn boat with ease? 


    138. Now THAT was a good scream, Julie.


    139. Ray is literally swinging in on a rope to save the day. I can’t believe I wasn’t in love with him when I was younger.

    Mandalay Entertainment

    140. How is the killer so bad with this hook now?!


    141. “When you leave a man for dead, make sure he’s really dead.” They will promptly ignore this advice.


    142. Oh I forgot his hand gets chopped off! So he literally has a hook for a hand in the sequel?


    143. Awww, Ray and Julie are back together. 


    144. It’s one year later again and you know Julie is doing well because not only did she mention she’s on the Dean’s list, but her hair is SUPER curly and bouncy now. 


    145. “You, mister, can ravage me in two weeks.” *11-year-old me googles what ravage means*


    146. Jeez, how hot did she have that water to fill the room with so much steam??


    147. “I still know” and bam there’s the sequel title right there.


    148. Get out, Julie, get out nooooowww.

    149. Eeek!

    150. I think this ending turns out to be a dream in the sequel, right?


    151. What a ride.
 I am surprised at how much I still loved this movie.

    TV and Movies

    Get all the best moments in pop culture & entertainment delivered to your inbox.

    Newsletter signup form