Carl Henry Jessup learns the hard way that you never want to make a deal with a devil. It never turns out good.
Let's talk about what I liked about this movie: it attempts to embrace the good old Grindhouse days. The computer program that they used to add the film wear and tear was pretty good. Probably the best I've seen. Not too much repetition in the flecking and scratches and the orange flare ups on the edges looked pretty authentic.
The lead, Paul E. Respass, did immerse himself in the role and came across as a cannibalistic madman with a soft spot. By the end, it's too late for him, but the actor brought a lot to the role. Theresa Holly, who plays his half-sister Rae Lynn, is drop dead gorgeous. Old school pin-up girl gorgeous. All in all the acting comes across as professional.
So, what we have here is a really good looking film with some excellent performances.
It's a shame that's all we get.
Some hillbilly up in the middle of nowhere killing people and eating them? I've already seen THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE. Hell, I've seen a couple of the sequels. Does this really need to get made again? Sure, there's a demon and some creepy shit going on here, but so what? It doesn't feel like the main part of this particular story and at a running time of 99 minutes it could do with some trimming.
Not scary. Not creepy. The gore effects are fine and look like a hundred other movies doing the same effects. It just doesn't bring anything noteworthy to the table and if you expect to sell a few copies of the DVD you really need that.
Now, a true shining part of the film is the part of Papa Jessup played by Ron Jason of LAS VEGAS SERIAL KILLER and ANGEL OF VENGEANCE fame. Any guy who worked with Ray Dennis Steckler and Ted. V. Mikels is okay in my book, but there wasn't enough of him in it. More like a glorified cameo.
Finally, the entire story is told by a fella just credited as The Storyteller (S.E. Feinberg). He opens and closes the movie with a trio of little kids sitting and listening to this twisted tale. He made me laugh both times and deserves a special mention in this review just for that. Especially at the end. I saw it coming and laughed anyway. Well done, sir.
The DVD comes with a making of documentary, a short film that I didn't bother with, a horror happens interview and three trailers for this movie. I knew I was in a little trouble when I watched the first trailer and thought to myself, "This seems like an awfully long trailer." If I'm bored by the trailer, what chance does the movie have? – Douglas Waltz
Douglas Waltz is a longtime ER contributor and the editor/publisher of the long-running zine Divine Exploitation (available from Amazon).
LEGEND OF THE HILLBILLY BUTCHER is available from Amazon.