The movie starts off in a house in the middle of the woods. A pregnant woman is shown watching the news and the newsman is talking about the mysterious Riverton Ripper and that he has killed 12 people already. They have footage of the Ripper in disguise as he kills a woman and a zoomed in image shows his blade with the words “Vengeance” engraved on it. The pregnant woman is obviously afraid.
Meanwhile, downstairs we see a man named Abel working on a rocking horse (important later). The pregnant woman asks him to come to bed because the news is scaring her. He says okay and she goes back upstairs. As he prepares to go upstairs he trips and falls and sees a blade underneath the table he was working on. The blade has the words “Vengeance” written across it and he looks in shock.
Cut to a scene in his bathroom. He stares into the mirror in shock that he is the killer. We find out he also suffers from schizophrenia and there is a dark voice telling him not to call his psychiatrist to tell him of his discovery and that if he does he will kill his wife and child. (Reminder: this is Abel talking to himself) Suddenly his wife appears behind him and scares him, telling him it’s time for bed.
Abel however cannot sleep and wakes up in the middle of the night. He sees his wife is asleep facing the other direction so he quickly calls his psychiatrist. He tells his psychiatrist everything and that his “other self” said that if he told him he would kill his family. The psychiatrist tells him he will call the police and that’s when Abel looks over and realizes that his wife is dead, and apparently the baby died too. He screams into the phone.
The police arrive and Abel’s daughter (3 years old) sees him in the bathroom trying to stab himself with the knife. The police are banging on the front door trying to break in. Abel’s daughter goes into the bedroom and sees her mother lying dead on the bed. Abel is behind her and raises his knife when suddenly he is shot by Officer Paterson (Frank Grillo). Abel falls to the ground. Paterson grabs Abel’s daughter while the psychiatrist and a paramedic inject Abel with Morphine. Abel’s daughter tells Paterson in a blank tone “get away from me.” They escort her out the room. Paterson tells the psychiatrist he is disgusted with Abel. The psychiatrist tells the paramedic to go get Nurse Hellerman (Jessica Hecht) on the phone. The paramedic leaves to do so.
Abel talks in his regular voice to Paterson and apologizes sorrowfully. The psychiatrist asks Paterson to forgive him as Abel reaches his hand out to him. Paterson gives in and grasps Abel’s hand. With the opportunity, Abel quickly snatches the gun from Paterson’s waist and kills the psychiatrist and shoots Paterson twice. Just then, another paramedic Jeanne Baptiste (Danai Gurira) walks in and Abel prepares to shoot her too but Paterson quickly shoots him 3 times. He had an extra gun on his ankle.
Inside the ambulance are Paterson, Jeanne, Abel, and the paramedic driving. The paramedic is talking to Nurse May Hellerman about the situation and that they think they have the Ripper. When he tells her the name of the suspect she looks shocked and drops the phone. Abel is out from the morphine and Jeanne is talking to Paterson and he tells her about Abel having multiple personalities. Jeanne says that her grandmother always said that people didn’t have different personalities but different souls. The difference being “souls live on.” Paterson asks her to pass him his jacket and when she reaches over Abel to do so, Abel awakens and slices her neck. She falls back on Paterson and the ambulance swerves and hits a stump, sending it tossing and turning into the woods. A squad car that wasn’t too far behind pulls up to help and Paterson jumps out the back to look for Abel. He goes by the river and sees that the gurney Abel was lying on was tipped over and Abel was gone.
16 years later…
We see a group of kids standing by the river. Among these kids are Jay Chan (Jeremy Chu), Penelope (Zena Grey) who is basically a wannabe nun, Brittany (Pauklina Olszynski), Brandon (Nick Lashaway), Jerome (Denzel Whitaker) who is blind, and Alex (John Marago). The kids all count up to 12 and the town’s light go out. Brandon explains that they are all here to celebrate for a good reason and a bad reason. Good being that it is seven of their birthdays today: Jay, Penelope, Brittany, Jerome, Alex, himself, and Bug (Max Thieriot). Bug shows up late and stands next to Alex who is basically his best friend.
Brandon explains that the spot they are in is the same spot where the Ripper went missing years ago. They even made a shrine out of the ambulance that he escaped out of. Brandon also says that every year one of them must kill the Ripper and send him back to where he came if he ever returns. Tonight just so happens to be Bug’s turn. Suddenly out the side of the woods the Ripper emerges (Alex informs Bug that it’s just a puppet). Bug is still fearful of the puppet however, and he cannot bring himself to attack it. Suddenly, the cops show up. The kids scatter and run off their separate ways. Alex, Bug, Jerome, and Jay all stay together and hide behind a log from the police. Jay tells Bug that he has nothing to worry about and that he walks over this creepy old railroad tracks above the river to get home every night and his grandmother always tells him to spit in the river and the Ripper won’t get him. They all decide to call it a night and leave one another.
Cut to Jay walking through the woods and onto the railroad tracks to head home. He stops in the middle of the bridge and spits into the river. He looks back and sees a strange figure walking towards him and he begins to walk faster. When he looks back again the figure is running; it’s the Ripper. Jay tries to escape but it’s useless as the Ripper slams him into a pole on the bridge, stabs him repeatedly and tosses him into the river, killing him.
Next we see Bug awaking in the middle of the night from a nightmare. He goes to take a shower. When he comes out he sits at his desk and begins to construct something for his project at school due the next day.
The next morning, we are treated to a montage of scenes of each of the “Riverton 7” (now the Riverton 6 since Jay died) preparing for school. Alex is watching TV and eating sunflower seeds when his abusive and drunk stepfather tells him to go to school, punching him in the ribs as he leaves. Bug is at home and sees his mom left him a cell phone in the bathroom. Alex is waiting for him in his bedroom after climbing through the window. Next we see Penelope praying to God to keep them all protected especially Bug because she feels that today is “the day”. She leaves to go to school. Next is Brittany who is talking with Brandon on the phone about giving Bug a “3” and giving Alex an “8” (important later). Brandon then tries to talk Brittany into giving him oral sex but she tells him off saying she’ll have her dog bury it in the backyard and she hangs up.
Outside we see Alex and Bug walking through the woods. Bug has a giant burlap bag. There is a stuffed Raven sitting atop a tree outside of Bug’s house and Bug says it’s there for protection. As they arrive to the school they discuss Bug’s crush on Brittany, saying he wants to tell her.
A security guard outside the school stops Bug and Alex and takes the bag saying it’ll be waiting for them in their 6th hour class. Bug and Alex walk away. Meanwhile we see Fang (Emily Meade) who is basically a gothic version of Regina George from Mean Girls, Brittany, Chandelle (Jerome’s sister) and another girl sit on a bench outside the school. Fang shows Brittany a piece of mail that Penelope left in Bug’s mailbox that she stole and she wants Brittany to keep it. She then tells Penelope to talk to the security guard. Brittany does so. Alex and Bug realize it is a distraction and turn around to see Brandon waiting for them. He punches Bug lightly saying he gets a “3” and punches Alex harder saying he gets an “8”. Brandon then leaves but Alex says something smart about his mother so he comes back but just when he is about to attack, Penelope appears and tells Brandon she knows that he got the principal’s daughter pregnant because she’s in her prayer group and she’ll tell the principal. He threatens her but she says “he’ll have to be worried more about Hell than a prison.” Brandon walks away. Penelope asks if Bug got her note to which he says no. She then tells him “Pray for our souls Bug” and kisses him on the cheek. She then leaves.
Bug and Alex enter the school and they talk about what Penelope says. Bug repeats what she says in the EXACT same way she said in a creepy tone. Alex seems unbothered by it. They then proceed to go to class.
When they get to their science class, Bug and Alex have to present their project. Alex sees what Bug has been working on and it’s a giant costume that looks like a condor. Alex slips it on and playfully flaps around the classroom while Bug explains the condor’s habitat in a creepy menacing voice. Suddenly, Penelope sees what looks like the Ripper moving around in the woods outside the window. She ignores it and continues to watch Bug and Alex’s presentation. Brandon makes a smart remark and Alex stops in front of him and stares him in the eye through the condor mask. Bug tells him that if a condor’s wings are touched bad things will happen. Brandon plucks a feather off and suddenly Detergent sprays out the front of the costume and onto Brandon. Brandon attacks Alex and then a second spray (this time brown and stinky) sprays all over Brandon. The teacher breaks the fight up and gives Bug a pass to the bathroom.
He goes to the bathroom and looks into the mirror. There he sees Jay float past the mirror. When he looks away and back at the mirror he discovers that Jay is no longer there and Alex surprises him. They leave the bathroom together and Alex explains that Brandon is pissed and they joke about it. Next they talk about how Bug can find out if Brittany likes him. They also can find out how to bring down Fang since she is like the head of the school. Since Bug has a new phone they decide to plant the phone in the girls bathroom to hear Fang, Brittany, and the others conversation since the girls meet in the bathroom at a specific time every day. Bug complies. They have Jerome draw any girls currently in the bathroom out. Then they plant the phone just in enough time for Fang and the others to show up. The girls are in the bathroom smoking when Fang brings up Bug asking if Brittany likes him. It’s obvious she does but since she’s afraid of Fang she says no. Fang says good because Brandon is better for her. They leave the bathroom.
Next, Bug begins to talk to Alex and say how he needs to get his phone back. During the process Bug blanks out at one point and begins to precisely mimic everything Alex does which freaks Alex out. He slaps Bug to knock him out of it and Bug goes to the girls restroom to get his phone. While there he see Brittany’s purse. Brittany is outside in the hall trying to get past Alex because she forgot her purse. Bug accidentally drops his phone in her purse while trying to close the stall. Brittany comes in and opens up the stall to see Bug, she screams.
Meanwhile, Penelope and the principal’s daughter are alone by the indoor pool. They are praying together when suddenly Penelope hears a clanking noise. The principal’s daughter is wrapped up in prayer so Penelope goes to investigate. She goes into the boiler room and follows the noise asking if “anyone’s there”. Suddenly she sees someone run past and out the opposite door. She runs out the room and back by the pool. She sees that the principal’s daughter is gone. The Ripper grabs her from behind and slits her throat. He then begins to stab her repeatedly as her blood pours into the pool.
Next we see Bug in the principal’s office with his mom May (the nurse from 16 years ago). The principal tells May about her son’s behavior. Bug then repeats what Penelope said earlier about “the principal’s daughter being pregnant”. The principal is stunned but May tells Bug to just leave. Bug leaves out. The principal then begins to discuss how there are no medical records on Bug and that he is on a lot of medication. He then says he has scheduled for Bug to take psychological classes next week. May dismisses this and leaves out.
Bug is seen sitting in the school courtyard. He is distraught over the fact that Brittany doesn’t like him. Brittany then walks past him and they have small talk but she shows no affection and leaves. Brandon appears and gets ready to beat up Bug, but Jerome quickly stops it and tells Brandon that he’ll tell Chandelle who will tell Fang that Brandon is acting out without her consent. Brandon leaves them alone. Jerome tells Bug that he’s a “hero” and he doesn’t have to worry about a thing. He then walks away. After he leaves Bug begins to freak out and talk to himself in the tones of Brandon, Jerome, Penelope, Brittany, and Alex repeating everything they said to him.
Then we see Bug sitting on a log in the woods. He sees Brittany walking down the street outside of the woods. He quickly runs away. Brandon approaches Brittany from behind and continuously tries to coax her into having oral sex. She still shoots him down calling him a “crotch-dog”. He threatens her by saying he’ll tell Fang about her behavior. She sighs and says okay but to come in the woods in 60 seconds. She goes into the woods. Brandon, not believing her, skips a few numbers and follows her. He sees her running from him and he calls her a “bitch”. He continues to chase her through the woods and then she comes upon the ambulance shrine. She finds Penelope lying up against the ambulance, dead. She screams and continues running. Brandon stops when he sees Penelope as well. He gets a call from Brittany. She thinks he killed her just because she threatened to tell the principal about him getting the girl pregnant. Before he can protest Brittany hangs up and calls the police. Brandon runs through the woods, knocking over Bug’s stuffed Raven in the process. He stops when he gets another phone call. He answers thinking its Brittany and apologizes nonstop. Suddenly a deep, dark voice responds and he realizes it isn’t her. The Ripper attacks him from behind and stabs him in the stomach repeatedly, killing him.
Meanwhile, Brittany limps through the woods, having fallen earlier. She ducks behind a small stump and looks around to see if she’s being followed. Suddenly, she hears a cell ring and sees to see Bug’s cell in her purse. She uses it to try and call the police but the line is busy. Then she tries to call home but suddenly the Ripper lifts her up and guts her viciously (lots of blood everywhere). Elsewhere we see Bug burying something while simultaneously we see Brittany’s body being dragged away.
Bug arrives home where his mother has been waiting with his cake. She sits it on the table and he sits down, makes a wish, and blows out the candle saying he wished he hadn’t screwed up earlier and that she could be happy for him. He then tells her about how he feels about Brittany. Suddenly, Fang comes downstairs and makes a smart remark to Bug. We discover that Fang and Bug are brother and sister.
Meanwhile we see the police and CSI discover the bodies of Brittany, Brandon, Penelope, and Jay by the river. Paterson and Jeanne cannot believe what they are seeing but deduce that the Ripper must be back.
Bug and his mother go into the kitchen and Fang goes back upstairs. When she comes back down she has a giant box with her. It has a red bow at the top and she says that she isn’t all about giving but figured “what the heck?” Bug opens the box and sees a rocking horse (the one from the beginning of the film). May becomes angry and tells Bug to go upstairs and to leave the horse. Bug says no and takes the horse and goes upstairs. May begins to yell at Fang calling her stupid and ungrateful. She also mentions how hard it has been to keep Fang posing as a 16 year old when she’s actually 19! Fang says she’s tired of holding in these lies and May smacks her and walks away. Fang shouts, “Fuck you!!!” and goes upstairs to her room; Bug stops her in the hallway and asks her what’s wrong. She then begins to beat the crap out of him. He constantly bugs her about it until finally she begins to drop hints. “Do you know who your father was?” “Do you notice that there aren’t any pictures of him around the house?” “Do you know who Abel was?” She then tells him to “take a closer look in the mirror, Bug!” And she slams her door shut in his face.
Next we are treated to a series of flashbacks as Fang stares at a model dollhouse.
Fang was the little girl 16 years ago. She saw her mother die and she has blamed Bug all these years and has hated him all these years because while she had to remember that their father was the Ripper and while she had to remember seeing her dead mother, Bug didn’t have to because he was lied to and told that May was his mother. She then proceeds to smash the model dollhouse with a bat while crying. Finally relieved of the anger she had building up inside. Bug knocks on her door and just as she opens it, preparing to beat him some more, he comes in with the rocking horse and smashes it to pieces. The two stare at each other and are finally at peace. Bug goes to his room and his mother talks to him in the hall. He says that he knows she isn’t her mother but in his eyes she will always be and closes his door. As she cries in the hall, Fang gets a phone call from Chandelle. She comes into the hall and tells her mother that the police found Penelope, Jay, Brandon, and Brittany all by the river, dead. Fang exclaims that “he’s back” and soon Jerome, Bug, and all of them will be next. They decide to go to the church. Fang goes out to the car to wait and May goes to get Bug but sees that his window is open and he’s gone. She goes downstairs.
Meanwhile Bug climbs from under his bed and Alex frightens him when he comes through his window. Bug tells him about what Penelope’s note said. He also tells Alex that the Ripper is his father. Alex proclaims that he found out when his mother died so he already knew. Bug begins to act suspiciously saying that Penelope said that either the Ripper really is back or that his soul went into one of the 7 kids born that night. After playing mind games on Alex he acts normal again. Alex, however, breaks down admitting that he had just killed his stepfather. He says he punched him back and he fell down the stairs, breaking his neck. Bug offers to go get him some water.
When Bug leaves to the bathroom he sees Penelope’s reflection in the mirror and she points down to the sink where Bug finds the Ripper’s blade. He then hears a rattle downstairs. He goes to check it out and sees that Alex is gone. When he gets downstairs he sees the backdoor open and a strange figure standing outside. It turns out to be Paterson who tells Bug to drop the knife and kick it over. They found Bug’s phone with Brittany’s body. Bug explains that he dropped it in her purse and to ask his mom. Paterson says that’s why he’s arresting him and points to the side. Bug sees May lying dead on the floor. He breaks down in tears. Just as Paterson prepares to arrest Bug, the lights go out and the Ripper attacks from behind and kills Paterson.
Bug and the Ripper struggle back and forth. Bug smashes a vase on top of the Ripper’s head and runs into the kitchen to look for a knife. Suddenly Fang pulls Bug into the pantry and quiets him down as they watch the Ripper walk past. They think he is gone, but the Ripper breaks through and pulls Bug out. They once again struggle back and forth when a bang is heard upstairs. The Ripper stops and runs up the stairs. Bug grabs a giant knife and Fang tells him “give him a 20”.
Bug goes upstairs and walks into his room where he sees blood on his windowsill. Then he sees a bloody handprint on his closet and when he opens it he sees Jerome fall out with a stab wound on his stomach. Jerome explains that he climbed on the roof and was knocked out. And when he got inside he heard the killer coming upstairs and his in the closet but was stabbed. Bug says Jerome saved his life and Jerome tells him he can do it because he’s a hero.
Alex suddenly returns through the window and is shocked to see Jerome dead. He is also shocked to find out that so many people died while he was gone. Then Bug notices that Alex is bleeding on his hear, possibly from being hit by a vase! That’s when Bug discovers the truth. He explains that with Bug hiding under the bed that gave Alex plenty of time to go downstairs and kill his mother. He also says that when he went downstairs and saw Paterson Alex quickly killed Paterson and attacked Bug. And finally he ran up the stairs to kill Jerome. Alex reveals himself to be the killer and begins to talk in Abel’s distorted voice. He tries to make a deal with Bug, saying that they can frame Jerome and can both walk away from this as two heroes. Bug denies the deal and just as Alex is about to kill him, he stabs Alex with a butcher knife sitting on his table, killing him.
Bug walks outside after hearing sirens. He expects to be arrested but instead the town and news reporters are running up to him thanking and congratulating him. Fang told the police EVERYTHING and therefore Bug is hailed a hero. He and Fang embrace one another.
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