Sunday, January 2, 2011

Cannibal Campout

Cannibal Campout (1988)
Dir: John McBride (Woodchipper Massacre)

Once in a great while upon sifting through the endless 80's shot on shitteo films you will stumble upon one that is actually decent. Surprisingly enough Cannibal Campout delivers on this front, which truly shocked me knowing that the director of this film made one of the worst films I have ever seen in WoodChipper massacre, Which was basically a precursor to Don't tell mom the babysitters dead. With that said let's get to this film.

   From that opening written statement it becomes apparent right from the get that we are going to be treated to a Texas Chainsaw Massacre rip off and essentially that is what this film is, but it is a fun one to watch.
A group of college kids head to Redston for a camping trip and upon arriving at the trail leading to their camping destination The kids are stopped by a car occupied by two strange men who approach their van and aggressively attack the bunch after their advances towards the girls of the group are not exactly welcomed. At this point one of the aggressors pulls out a knife and attempts to stab the driver as the gang quickly drives off and continues to their camping spot understandably shaken up.
As the group set up camp we see two of their school mates arriving in the woods as well, in hopes to prank the guys after telling them of people turning up missing in Redston before they left for their vacation, But honestly these are just Gore fodder to pad the body count. These two sub-plot performers are quickly disposed of. One by Machete at the hands of the "LeatherFace" of the redneck group, This one dawning a fighter pilot helmet. The effects in this film are done rather  well considering the budget that was obviously lacking in this film, So it is a pleasant surprise considering McBrides other works with the killings done mainly off screen to detour from actually having to know how to put the gore set pieces together. The second prankster is killed by a surprise sledgehammer shot to the head from another one of the evil rednecks who bursts out from under a floor of a cabin the young man snuck into.
Shortly after the first two killings we learn the objective of these rednecks , as they are a family of cannibals whom hunt for food in the woods of Redston.

So the film moves pretty swiftly from this point given that the film is only a little more than an hour long and the main group begins to get picked off one by one until we are left with the final three which consists of two men one of which is portrayed as the films hero for the most part , his best friend and the pregnant girlfriend.
The Crazy family captures the remaining trio and ties them up then proceed to kill the guy whom we are lead to believe would be the hero and they feast on him in a gruesome scene while forcing the surviving two to watch and then join in on the feast. Again the effects on this scene are done extremely well for a film of this quality.
During this scene the last male of the campers starts to mouth off at the cannibal boys and he is given an Axe to the face for his troubles.
Now with just the woman left , one of the cannibal brothers decides he wants a bit more than just dinner from this victim and unties her in attempt to coax her into sex either willingly or not, at this point she is able to stab him and make a run for it through the woods until she is caught by the Helmut wearing madman and she unmasks him revealing that he is in fact deformed, looking an awful lot like the Toxic Avenger.
Then in a bit of a twist and downer ending the sole camper left, The pregnant woman is of course treated to a backwoods abortion as the Mad family rips the fetus from her body and she really does not put up any sort of fight in this struggle which I found a bit strange.
After that disturbing visual, The Gang of redneck Texas Chainsaw knockoffs go on to hunt for more food. Or do they? I will leave you to find that out if you dare to check this little Trasher out.
I gotta say that as far as shot on shitteo movies go this one is pretty well done. the acting is god awful but it is to be expected when the director not only wrote and acted in the film he also obviously hired his friends to play the other roles as a cost cutting measure.But acting aside this TCM knockoff will please the gore fans out there as from beginning to end the blood and guts are plentiful, I mean it is easy to see that the set pieces were all done on a extremely frugal budget they were put together with love for the genre and the director had gorehounds in mind when making this film. I would say that the filmmakers involved incorporated the H.G. Lewis method of gore which is the more red and meat we see the less we viewers pay attention to the actual cheapness of the effects and it works in this film well. Hot dogs and noodles for entrails covered in ketchup but it looks good enough on the low quality film and lighting to pass and be effective. I enjoyed this film for it's utter cheesiness and the movie has got heart and I really was dreading this film going in knowing that the director was responsible for the piece of complete shit that was Woodchipper massacre , which honestly should have had a different name because there was no massacre to be seen in that film. With all that said this film is released on dvd as part of the Retro 80's series and so far from the ones I have seen this one is definitely the best yet, and I don't honestly see any shining brighter than this little stinker. Will this film go down in anyones list of personal classics? probably not but, it is a fun watch and worth checking out for fans of gore films.
Gore:7 (for the budget provided this is the films strong suit)
Story:4 (Basic Redneck family eating innocent campers ala Texas Chainsaw Massacre)
Characters:5 ( Horribly acted and mostly annoying,but oddly endearing)
Nudity:2 (one set of saggy ugly chick boobs)
Overall: 5.5 out of 10

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