Hollywood Chainsaw Hookers 2001 Horror Movie Review
Horror movies Review
One of the few sleazy low budget horror movies that actually delivers on the promise of its title (and what a title!), this trashy treasure from Fred Olen Ray also has a classic exploitation cast, toplined by Scream Queen Linnea Quigley (her shining moment is the virgin dance of the double chainsaws!). You could obviously tell from the title that this film was not meant to be taken seriously, the 1988 cult classic definitely doesn’t avoid the campiness implied by its title. Prostitutes in Hollywood start to chop up clients, and private detective Jack Chandler (Jay Richardson) finds himself on their trail. Chandler ends up on this path when runaway Sam Kelso’s (Linnea Quigley) parents hire him to find her. It turns out she’s one of the chainsaw killers but she’s not the only one. Chandler discovers a cult run by none other than Texas Chainsaw Massacre’s Leatherface, Gunnar Hansen behind the crimes and tries to dig deeper into this crazy series of murders.
Over the last 20 years, I guess Hookers has earned a reputation as a “great” “B” movie. While the film wasn’t exactly great it was still a bit of fun. All the cast members involved realise that it’s a cheesy and tacky film, but they find its charm comes from its over the top nature. Hookers combines the horror and film noir genres as it creates a rollicking spoof - or at least that’s what it hopes to do. Its plot seems incidental to the action but then again you wouldn’t mind since the story just exists as an excuse for nudity and over the top violence, both of which it delivers. I think it was more like a parody of the genre. The script is ridiculously entertaining (or maybe even more entertainingly ridiculous), the dialog is totally over-the-top and most of the jokes/puns are truly fantastic. This was definitely one of Fred Olen Ray’s better films, it’s not like I’ve seen that many of his films but the ones that I’ve seen were pretty awful. If you are after a fun little comedy/horror film with the typical fix of nudity, corny one liners and gore which is genuinely funny and clever, this should be on top of your list.
This 20th anniversary edition is pretty neat, it’s a good edition with a decent amount of extras, since the older print was out of print for a while this edition will do for now and it seems like it had a better picture quality than the previous one. The picture appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this single-sided, double-layered DVD; the image has been enhanced for 16X9 televisions. Although I don’t expect much from a 20 year old low-budget flick like Hookers, the result was slightly disappointing though. Sharpness had issues as well. Some parts of the movie showed decent delineation, but much of the film seemed soft and flat. According to the disc’s commentary, the original source footage is missing and this print was the best the producers could do so now we know why it looks this way. We open with an audio commentary from writer/director Fred Olen Ray and writer TL Lankford. Both sit together for this running, screen-specific chat. They discuss cast and crew and shooting on a low budget with a very short schedule, sets and locations, the script and their collaboration, and a mix of other connected topics. This commentary provides a lot of fun and both guys were funny (wait till you hear what the guys have to say about Gunnar Hansen, priceless!).
Next comes a 23-minute Making of Featurette. It includes remarks from Ray and actors Linnea Quigley and Michelle Bauer. The show looks at the flick’s origins and path to the screen, cast and crew, budgetary and production constraints, stunts, the movie’s legacy and general stories from the shoot. In addition to the film’s trailer, we get a five-minute episode of Night Owl Theater. This was a promotional attempt by “Retromedia” and it was created a few years ago. Ray introduces a film and talks about a “free stuff” program discontinued in 2003. It does seem abit pointless but there’s a little skin, and we get to meet Fred’s wife Kim and her “big fake (...)”, so it’s worth a look ;-). This is a must see for B/cult/horror fans and probably Fred Olen Ray’s best film. I highly recommend this.