Isaacs Picture Conclusions

THE TOOLBOX MURDERS (1977) FOUR TOP HATS

I’m REALLY behind on my movie writin’ (and I’m very sleepy) (and I’ve been toiling away, working on something veeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeery special for Monday), and since someone responded to a questionnaire indicating they wouldn’t like it if I didn’t post something on Wednesday, here’s one from the archives that only one person has ever looked at. This is also one of my very first (and favorite) posts (LOL look at those tags!!) so don’t laugh AT me. Since only one person has ever read this and was kind enough to leave a comment here it is:

Lemuel Severance

“It starts off with a bang – well, with a drill – then a hammer, and then a screwdriver, and then a nail gun.”
ALL THAT and…a doll beheading –
MUST SEE

What’s not to like about this thing? I remember, back when HBO first came out, staying up late after the mom went to bed and sneaking this movie in, turned down so low you couldn’t hear anything, hiding under blankets on the couch, scared out of my drawers, catching some nekkid women. Here we are twenty something years later and it’s out on BLU-RAY, in all of it’s glory. After watching this again, this movie is definitely weird, but thoroughly entertaining, if you like 70’s B-movie acting, 70’s sets (record players! Shag toilet seat covers! Bell Bottoms!), 70’s country music, lots of blood, nekkidness and general madness, then this is for you – i don’t know how you could not be entertained through the end. It starts off with a bang – well, with a drill – then a hammer, and then a screwdriver, and then a nail gun. We then have some generally odd 70’s exposition leading up to the sweaty, weird climax you didn’t see coming.  Go for it!

Our setting here is the El Patio del Sequoia apartments where only loose, drunk, lesbian, women who expose themselves live. Well – and the chaste, 15 year old virgin who lives upstairs with her mom and brother (she is important here). It is no spoiler to tell you that the madman who gruesomely dispatches these characters is the owner of the complex (if you didn’t figure that out the first time the cops are called then i am sorry), whose chaste, virginal daughter was killed in a car wreck “after she got into drugs and sex” (it is alluded). The owner then sets out to cleanse the complex of impure women by using the variety of tools at his disposal; and to kidnap the chaste young 15 year old upstairs to replace his dead daughter. After the kidnapping (the murders remain unsolved, you see) her brother and his pal, the actor who played Will in Land of the Lost, decide to earn some gas money by cleaning up the crime scenes. The brother’s pal is the nephew of the complex owner – coincidentally – also the man who is currently in possession of his sister, nicely tied up with ribbons in the owner’s daughter’s room, filled with dolls and hairbrushes. After a visit by the befuddled detective and a trip to the owner’s house, the brother begins to put two and two together and i’ll just tell you things get a little weird from here.

toolboxredux2

I haven’t seen the remake by the guy that directed The Texas Chainsaw Massacre but i want to check it out… (I actually have now HERE if you’re interested)

SPOILERS:

When brother alleges to owner’s nephew that owner is the killer, owner’s nephew douses him with gasoline, sings him a song and lights him on fire (to protect his family), He then enters the house, heads to the daughter’s room and confesses to the owner that he had been having frequent sex with his cousin. This puts owner in a rage because his daughter has been soiled. He (very sweatily) grabs a doll and tells his nephew he’s going to kill him. They head into the kitchen where nephew grabs the butcher knife conveniently lying on the kitchen counter. During their struggles, nephew accidentally beheads the doll which sends uncle into a sweaty, loud craze. Eventually the uncle is stuck in the gut with the knife and doll is covered in blood. I guess he wasn’t protecting his family too much… maybe he should have thought twice about burning someone alive, Oh well – we then take a break from the action so he can wash the doll free of blood, put on her tiara, head to the room to free his friend’s hostage sister and then, yes, force himself on her. If being held hostage by a lollipop sucking, sweating madman wasn’t enough, if being forced into sex wasn’t enough, when her brother’s friends admits to killing him, this does it and she stabs him with a pair of scissors. End!

41 comments

    • theipc

      It really is a lot of quaint, 70s fun…. you’ll love the part where the one kid sings to Will while dousing him with gasoline….

      Like

  1. I’m also really behind on my movie watching and writing, need to start dipping into the archives. But my old reviews suck lol. No one read them back then, maybe that’s the way it should stay lol.

    Excellent post Eric! Going back in time, geez 1977, wasn’t even born lol.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lem

    “It starts off with a bang – well, with a drill – then a hammer, and then a screwdriver, and then a nail gun.”
    ALL THAT and…a doll beheading –
    MUST SEE

    and…
    I always loved that title and poster!

    Like

  3. Sounds awesome. I actually only knew about the remake, I didn’t know there was an older film. I could never get past the title… but then I started thinking of what kind of things I’d have to kill people with when it comes to my own toolbox. Then I realized all I have is a pocket knife, some duct tape, and some used sandpaper. I could probably get creative….

    Like

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