A few college girls are having a slumber party and go to rent a video at a local dealer. The girls cannot agree on a film, so one of them asks for help. The clerk states that she has just the thing and disappears into the back room.
Meanwhile, one girl sees a box-less tape lying on the counter and reaches toward it. Just then, the clerk comes out from the back and tells her not to touch it and hands her an older film. The girl asks about the first tape, and the woman tells her that it is just a home movie. The girls agree to rent the tape that the woman suggests. While they are checking out, the girl who asked for help swipes the "home movie" tape.
Back at their house, the girl tells the others about the tape she swiped and they laugh, telling her that she is dumb for stealing some woman's home movies. Still, they ask her to play the tape. She puts the tape in and then the power goes out -- but the television stays on.
The video starts playing and shows a black woman being burned for practicing witchcraft and hoodoo. She utters a curse that all who witnesses her death will face the same fate in two-day time. The VCR begins to make skipping sounds and then cuts off. As promised, the girls died exactly forty-eight hours after watching the tape. They all met their demise at the end of the 48th hour exactly where they stood: one drowned in the pool, another broke her neck when she fell in the ice rink, and still another quickly passed on sitting in the passenger seat of a car, as her mother drove her to their family reunion.