Massacre (1989)

MassacreDVDCoverDirector Andrea Bianchi’s Massacre revolves around a bunch of murders happening during the shooting of a horror film called Dirty Blood. Dirty Blood looks like your typical Bianchi film, what with its murky visuals and murkier story line, but the bits and pieces of it we get to see being filmed make it apparent that it would probably be more entertaining than the real Bianchi movie we are actually sitting through!

Massacre doesn’t actually open with this film within a film gimmick though. The film is at least smart enough to start us out with a gruesome kill! With music that sometimes sounded like a junior high Goblin cover band playing it, a dude dressed up like the Unibomber meets up with a streetwalker, chops off her hand and then decapitates her. While the effects are very graphic, they are also very bad. (How could they have treated an innocent mannequin head like that?)

Captain Frank of the local police force  is getting a lot of heat from the chief who is under pressure to solve all these bad special effects murders. Frank assures the chief that he’ll get his man and that he’s hot on the trail of the killer no matter where it takes him. Especially if it takes him to the set of his girlfriend Jenny’s new horror film!

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And what a lucky break that turns out to be for Frank because all the people involved with making Dirty Blood are full of skanky secret desires! For instance, the assistant director Mira is a lesbian who spends most of her time trying to get Jenny into bed. There’s also a guy who is trying to get his wife to get Jenny into bed for a threesome. And the male lead watches with delight as the writer’s wife performs a little strip show for him through the hotel window!

Then there is Jenny who spends her time taking showers with Frank and taunting the lesbian assistant director by asking her to do typical assistant director tasks like attaching her stockings to her garter belt for her! Where do I apply for that job?

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Not much beyond all these dirty shenanigans goes on after the first hooker gets killed and if your thing is seeing Italian women in various states of undress and black lingerie, then you’ll probably be able to hang in there until the killing starts again.

The director of Dirty Blood shows that he’s smarter than Andrea Bianchi because he realizes that his horror movie sucks and just isn’t all that scary. This prompts him to stop shooting it in the middle of things and causes the crew to go back to the hotel where they can indulge their various alternative lifestyles. The director determines that what he needs to do to get his movie that big, scary vibe he’s looking for is a good old fashioned séance!

During the séance a medium tries to contact her regular spirit guide, but gets a wrong number and some spirit named Rack tries to bust a move on everyone!

This Rack guy is so persistent that he’s even busting up the hotel bar where Frank is hanging out banging back whiskey! Frank falls to the floor from all this ectoplasmic tomfoolery and then he hears screaming coming from the room where the séance was taking place.

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Frank kicks the door in and rescues everybody from nothing. The director declares his idea a success and is convinced this is the sort of spark they need to make a really effective horror film. And by golly if it doesn’t work because people involved with the film start dying! Twists and turns that make little sense and aren’t explained follow and the film naturally concludes with nothing resolved!

Massacre is as messy as a hooker with her head and hand chopped off and just about as appealing. This movie has absolutely nothing going for it – not style, not originality, not presentation. It’s one of the films along with The Murder Secret, Bloody Psycho, Escape From Death, and Hansel & Gretel that appear to exist solely so that Lucio Fulci wouldn’t have to be bothered to shoot any special effects scenes for his Cat in the Brain.

By turns drearily sleazy and sloppy, Massacre‘s ultimate non-payoff merely confirms that no one involved cared much about anything other than getting cruddy, hastily shot footage in the can for potential recycling Those eager to sample Bianchi’s violently scuzzy style would be better served checking out his relatively not as atrocious Strip Nude For Your Killer or Burial Ground: The Nights of Terror.

© 2014 MonsterHunter

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