Just when you thought it was safe to drive a motor home in North Georgia...
Review: Motor Home Massacre
|That's a sexy, sexy motor home.|
Motor Home Massacre delivers in true camp style what it's intended audience expects; nudity; profanity, drug abuse and buckets of blood. It starts out strong with a scene involving a tent being hoisted into the air with some ropes and a machete welding killer subsequently slaughtering the girl inside of it from underneath.
Unfortunately it's a good forty minutes or more before anyone else bites the dust. In the mean time, we get to meet the standard horror movie characters, but this time the token black guy has been replaced with the token white guy who thinks he's black. Stand out members of this "Scooby Gang" include Nelson Bonilla as an obnoxious bullying prankster and Justin Geer as the put upon nice guy who seems a bit uptight at first until he discards his vest and yellow tie and suddenly has an extreme character change. But don't worry, the vest and yellow tie do return briefly in two scenes for a hilarious continuity goof.
The four guys and three girls head up to the hills in a large motor home for a camping trip. Bad idea. Following this there is a nice montage as the motor home drives down the highway and towards the characters impeding doom.
Along the way, of course, the group makes a pit stop at an old country gas station where pickled pigs feet are sold for $1.50 and a bumpkin-fied sales clerk tries to make the cast laugh as he tells them a gruesome story about the events from the night before. Events I might add, he has no way of knowing about in detail, but that's okay because the flashback story leads to an erotic tent scene that almost makes you forget about logic. Throw in some gratuitous nudity and you've got yourself a watchable flashback.
By the time the gang leaves the gas station it has already gotten dark, I suppose the sales clerk's flashback story must have taken a few hours to tell. Once they arrive at their destination, the real trouble begins. They come across a crime scene and a mysterious park ranger detains them. I guess a couple of teens murdered in the woods would only raise the suspicion of one lone officer.
They soon meet another equally enigmatic character played by Tanya Fraser, who may or may not be involved with the killings. Soon the audience gets what they came for as another actress goes topless, the gang smokes some pot, and the crazy killer starts chopping everyone up.
In an homage to Edward D. Wood Jr., some scenes that are obviously supposed to take place at night were shot during the day with a blue tint added in post, or maybe someone forgot to white balance the camera. Overall, the shot choice, lighting and the editing work well. But the over-the-shoulder shots are reversed and the camera crosses the line in one scene that takes place outside of the gas station. This could probably be fixed in post by flipping one the images or by just using one of the two shots.
It seems there was little budget for effects, but the FX artists did a competent job with what they had to work with. Some of killing scenes could have benefited from the less is more philosophy of editing. A good example of this is when a character's back is ripped open and the effect looks good, but when you linger on the shot for about ten seconds it becomes less believable. Also, one death scene unnecessarily becomes an acid trip when a trailing effect was imposed upon the shot in post.
Motor Home Massacre never takes itself too seriously and this works strongly in it's favor, it's kind of a cross between Friday the 13th and Scream. There are some truly darkly funny moments, especially one scene near the end involving a frying pan. It works on a basic level and the cast seems to be having fun. For anyone who chooses to watch a movie titled Motor Home Massacre, if you expect the well-paced mindless slaughter of a group of misbehaving kids, you'll get what you're looking for. Did I mention that two actresses take their tops off?
Dave R. Watkins is a actor, writer, filmmaker and horror movie fan living in North Georgia.
Motor Home Massacre
Rating: (2 out of 4)
Directed by: Allen Wilbanks
Written by: Allen Wilbanks
Starring: Shan Holleman, Nelson Bonilla, Justin Geer, Tanya Fraser
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