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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bob Vila's Favorite Film!
Back in the day Phil Donahue devoted an entire show to violent films and their alleged harmful effects, focusing mainly on The Toolbox Murders. This type of horror film was still quite new at the time, Halloween still being a year away and Friday The 13th three years away. I can understand how Phil and Co. thought this was appalling at the time, but any hardcore horror...
Published on December 25, 2004 by Stanley Runk

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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An Original....
Fan of good old 70's sleazy, slasher, drive-in horror movies? Then look no further, it's got enough T&A and blood to keep most slasher fans happy, can be brutal at times, has a much better over-all feel than the big budget remake/re-do. Would recommend this over the remake ANYDAY!!
Published on April 18, 2005 by GOREHOUND LARS


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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bob Vila's Favorite Film!, December 25, 2004
This review is from: The Toolbox Murders (DVD)
Back in the day Phil Donahue devoted an entire show to violent films and their alleged harmful effects, focusing mainly on The Toolbox Murders. This type of horror film was still quite new at the time, Halloween still being a year away and Friday The 13th three years away. I can understand how Phil and Co. thought this was appalling at the time, but any hardcore horror fan will say, "what's all the fuss about?" Actually I'm surprised they singled this out and didn't devote the hour to Last House On The Left. I guess Phil didn't watch that one. Imagine his reaction if he saw Cannibal Holocaust! Anyhow, as you'll read in other reviews, people really think this is a stinker. Most of these folks are young horror fans exposed to this film for the first time since it recently got a dvd release expecting an all out bloodbath coz of the film's reputation. Yeah, if you have those expectations I can almost guarantee you'll walk away disappointed. the actual "toolbox murders" occur from the getgo and go on for about a half hour or so, then we're done with the slasher flick portion of the film. The film totally switches gears at this point, right after the killer abducts a fifteen year old girl. Ya see, this guy feels he's doing God's work by killing women he finds immoral and dirty. All victims are from the same apartment complex, and do cool stuff like dance in lingerie right in front of the window. How come this never happens in my apartment complex? Although I did hear a couple going at it last summer. Anyhow, that's not important, back to the story. He kidnaps this girl to save her from these evils, but also becomes convinced that she is his daughter who had died some years before. I've seen this film a time or two before, so I know about the psycho-drama part of the film. Quite frankly, I enjoy it. Cameron Mitchell does an adequate job, looking like a psycho Tom Jones. Lots of acting bashing here, but the scenes showing him and the girl in a father/daughter type mind game aren't too bad and even a bit disturbing at that. Gore? Confined to the first half hour mainly. The murders aren't barf bag sick or anything, but unpleasant enough. Don't hold your breath for the infamous nail gun scene, coz it's nothing to write home about. The tub scene preceeding it is an attention getter, but if you see enough slasher films, the nail gun's not so shocking. It's only famous coz it's a nail gun, which is something that had never been used in a horror film before. I would recommend The Toolbox movies if you're a connoisseur of old horror and exploitation films. It's a minor classic in it's own right, so what could it hurt to say you've seen it? Once again Blue Underground's devotion to the restoration of crappy films comes through nicely here. This film probably didn't look or sound this good upon it's original release! Watch it in your underwear with a full stock of Funyuns for full effect.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dennis Donnelly's The Toolbox Murders, June 3, 2002
This infamous little slasher flick with the infamous little title is a full... of blood, violence, and nudity. It is everything you expect from something of this ilk.
Supposedly based on a true story, four women in an apartment building are brutally murdered by items normally found in a toolbox. The killer (and the film makers do not hide this fact) is Cameron Mitchell, the building owner. Mitchell is a religious [person]who recently lost his daughter in a car accident. He then begins punishing "sinful" women.
...The last third of the film sees the deaths of two major characters, and wraps things up nicely with the end credits crawl describing what happened to the "survivors" of this "real life" crime spree.
Although rated (R), this is some very violent stuff. The first half hour, when the majority of the crimes take place, is unpleasant. Two of the first four victims die,... including the now infamous murder of the model taking a bath.
The video copy I have of this is awful. The sound is scratchy, the colors bleached out...and it is fantastic. I felt like I was watching something on a screen at a drive-in,...The blood flows freely, and the murders are punctuated by some truly bizarre country and love tunes.
... The film makers... build up a subplot between Ferdin and Beauvy's mom and the standard driven police detective that never pans out, or is resolved.
Ferdin and Eure were mainstays on television in the 1970's... They do well,considering the material.
... Donnelly's direction is pretty basic, a camera shadow can be seen here and there. Gary Graver, the cinematographer, is known as Orson Welles' cameraman later in the great director's career. Graver seems to have made a career of this kind of film, his involvement usually sets you up for what to expect.
I cannot explain why I am recommending this film. Genre fans might appreciate the gore effects, and the reputation this film now celebrates. This is a serial killer film before the term "serial killer" was coined. The events are so watchable, however. This is not "Scream" or "Urban Legends," this is the type of film that no more motive than to scare and disgust its viewer. If that is all they wanted to do, they succeeded. I recommend this.
This is rated (R) for very strong physical violence, some sexual violence, very strong gore, mild profanity, very strong female nudity, sexual content, and adult situations.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An Original...., April 18, 2005
This review is from: The Toolbox Murders (DVD)
Fan of good old 70's sleazy, slasher, drive-in horror movies? Then look no further, it's got enough T&A and blood to keep most slasher fans happy, can be brutal at times, has a much better over-all feel than the big budget remake/re-do. Would recommend this over the remake ANYDAY!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars FOUR STARS FOR TRANSFER -- GRIND-HOUSE IN HI-DEF?!, March 4, 2010
By 
Robin Simmons (Palm Springs area, CA United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
A handyman goes berserk and murders women he judges as immoral or bad. He uses the tools of his trade: screwdrivers, claw-hammers, a nail gun, and a power drill. A simple plot for a grisly film that offers no real redeeming values. But although this notorious 1978 grind-house title was roundly banned, censored, vilified and damned - there are those who see it as a cinematic exercise not only of the First Amendment, but also an opportunity for the release of pent-up anger and frustration. But is it art? Or does it fuel the rage of psychopaths until they act out? What can one say about vicariously experiencing the torture and murder of women as entertainment? Can you say the same thing about Hitchcock's "Psycho"?

Camereron Mitchell stars in this cult sickie (for some, that's high praise). Look for former child star Pamela Ferdin and adult film star Kelly Nichols aka Marianne Walter.

This classic exploitation film still shocks and can be "enjoyed" now in a true hi-def, uncensored transfer that has been newly remastered from the original negative.

Extras include a amazing audio commentary with producer Tony DiDio, cinematographer Gary Graver and actor Pamela Ferdin. The story of the making of the film is more interesting than the film itself. A featurette aptly titled "I Got Nailed in the Toolbox Murders" is a memorable interview with adult star Marianne Walter.

Few film posters have so clearly advertised the intent and content of the movie it heralds - and delivers.

This film is not for everyone. Maybe not for anyone but exploitation film scholars, misogynists and psychiatrists.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome!, January 7, 2008
This review is from: The Toolbox Murders (DVD)
A sadistic and religious murderer takes matters into his own hands and tries to rid "The Filth" from women using his trusty toolbox. After the death of the murderer's daughther he then becomes angry towards all women and uses items such as a nail gun, hammer, drill, screw driver etc. to kill them and leaves the police clueless as to who the killer is, The killer kidnaps a young teenage girl and pretends that she his daughter. And a bunch of other crazy gumbo.

The film has an interesting feel to it and gruesome murders, the movie was criticized as a woman-hating piece of filth by femminest and critics alike but it was a popular hit at drive-in theaters and grindhouse theaters. It's a very sleazy and gory as hell slasher flick that plays also as a character study and does have funny elements such as a funny song that plays during the murder of a woman in the tub with a nail-gun. The film became a cult hit among horror fanatics and gorehounds alike and predates "Maniac" and "Driller Killer".

The DVD has a wonderful transfer and nice sound to it with extras that will satisfy.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not As Scary As Mitchell's Facelift, April 8, 2004
By 
John Ashley Nail (Decatur, GA United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Toolbox Murders (DVD)
Most of the controversy surrounding "The Toolbox Murders" revolved around charges of misogyny rather than extreme gore. To that end, the infamous "nail gun scene"--which was featured on "60 Minutes" and "Donahue" as an example of violence against women in film--is unsettling for its blend of eroticism and cold brutality, making the movie flirt with a snuff mentality. It's also one of the more groundbreaking scenes in splatter movies and the most effective scene in "The Toolbox Murders." Otherwise, the movie isn't any different from a whole host of other gore movies. It's better than most, with OK performances and a fair amount of technical proficiency for what it is, but there are few moments that are going to make much impact on today's jaded horror fans. Most of the murders occur in the first half of the movie, and while they're bloody, there have been more graphic scenes on "ER." In the movie's second half it pretends to be a mystery, even though you know who the murderer is within the first five minutes.
The DVD includes an 8-minute interview with Marianne Walter, who played the victim in the nail gun scene and who later, under the name Kelly Nichols, became "an adult film actress." (First the nail gun scene and then a porn star--Ms. Walter was just giving the feminists fits!) The commentary, by producer Tony Didio, director of photography Gary Graver and a VERY PERKY Pamelyn Ferdin, has some enlightening moments, but it gets redundant after about 30 minutes.
Ultimately, though, about the scariest thing in "The Toolbox Murders" is star Cameron Mitchell's facelift.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 70s sleeze in High Definition!, January 22, 2012
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The original Toolbox Murders was a bona-fide guilty pleasure back in the 70s, and it remains so to this very day. What happens when a handyman goes on a murderous rampage through an LA apartment complex, taking out "immoral" women? Plenty of blood, gore, and nudity that's what! For what it is, The Toolbox Murders is an exercise in inventive slasher movie perceptions. It offers some decent examples of bloody brutality, yet also manages to be as cheesy as it is sleezy. In those regards, it's worth seeing if you've never seen it before, or have only seen the Tobe Hooper remake that came out a few years back. Blue Underground managed to produce another standout Blu-Ray disc, which features the film in a silky smooth transfer and intriguing extras including an insightful commentary track, a documentary/retrospective, and the usual assortment of trailers and TV spots to round things out here.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars toolbox terror, November 6, 2004
This review is from: The Toolbox Murders (DVD)
Far superior in every way to Tobe Hoopers new version, Cameron mitchell stars as the balaclava wearing drill/nailgun weilding maniac who for the first 20 minutes or so lovingly despatches a host of maidens with a different tool in his box everytime. This film is very grisly and is still unavailable uncut in most places, apart from the states of course. After the opening sequences the film becomes a bit mundane and plods along extremely slowly developing into a kidnap drama with a psycho twist but Mitchell is superb and strangely - for an ex-cowboy - extremely believable as the tormentor, the rest of the acting is pretty appalling as you would come to expect from these types of movies but the gore scenes at the begginning are quite shocking, especially the nail-gun scenario. Blue underground havedone a great job of cleaning up the image and is a very worthwhile addition to the horror genre.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Dull Slasher Flick, August 15, 2009
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This review is from: The Toolbox Murders (DVD)
The Toolbox Murders (1977) is a misleading movie. The first thirty minutes are non-stop carnage and t & a. It makes you think that you're watching a good exploitation/slasher film. However, after that first half hour the movie takes a completely different direction. It becomes a dull psychological drama. There are no more toolbox murders. No more nudity. Just a bunch of boring dialogue that's often lame as well. Also, I have to point out that this movie was remade a few years back by Tobe Hooper. Hooper's movie is far better and really isn't anything like this one. You should watch that one instead since I would give that 4/5. I can only give this one 2/5, and that's just for the first thirty minutes. After that, you should just turn it off if you value your time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hammy Cheeeze..., July 17, 2010
This review is from: The Toolbox Murders (DVD)
THE TOOLBOX MURDERS is a wonderfully cheeezy 70s movie w/ a boffo beginning, a rather looonng, dull middle, and a semi-interesting finale. It starts out as a bloody murder story, then morphs into a bizarre Hardy Boys-type mystery, and winds up w/ more gooshy deaths! It must have seemed shocking to see women killed by various tools in 1978. Alas, by today's standards this is routine at best. Still, if you like 70s horror, and Cameron Mitchell (THE DEMON) doesn't remind you too much of Bill T. Shatner, then TTM could be a nice diversion...
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The Toolbox Murders
The Toolbox Murders by Dennis Donnelly (DVD - 2003)
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