Legend Of The Hillbilly Butcher

HillbillyORDER DVD

With a title like that and a deliberately faded, washed out look that is reminiscent of some recently discovered grindhouse gem this is a film that is going to leave some people very disappointed.

You see this is essentially an art film disguised as horror, or maybe it’s vice versa but either way it isn’t what you expect.  And I for one have to admire director Joaquin Montalvan for trying to expand the slasher genre.  Whether it actually works or not is another thing.

Our story begins with granddad telling the kids a little bedtime story about local ‘long pig’ butcher Carl Henry Jessup who lives out in the woods, contemplating life, remembering the good old days, longing for his dead parents to be with him, making moonshine and occasionally butchering trespassers.

Seems daddy was a butcher too and Carl Henry is following in his footsteps.  So you’d expect a carve up right?  Well you do get that but this is a slow moving film, at times introspective and while the killings do come, complete with good old fashioned blood capsules and squibs they aren’t the core element to the story.  You see Carl Henry misses his parents so much he makes a deal with a demon by the name of Sam Bakoo, a demon who looks like a cling wrapped arts student but a demon none the less and once the deal is done things get a bit squirrely for Carl Henry.

He may be a loner but his kinfolk Raelynn comes and cleans and cooks for him on a regular basis and he has buddies out in the woods who share a drink and stare into space on the odd occasion so he’s not always alone, except when he’s down in the cellar preparing the meat that is.  Trouble is now that he’s unleashed Sam Bakoo there’s a new visitor, a young girl by the name of Jessie who appears to warn Carl Henry about his bargain but then starts messing with Carl herself.  First she helps one of his still live victims escape from the cellar, then she takes away all the meat, every last scrap, leaving Carl Henry more than a little perplexed.  And when Raelyn discovers his secret stash of heads, skins and finger bones, well then things really get messy.

I won’t give away the ending but let’s just say Sam Bakoo doesn’t play nice.

With a great soundtrack to add to the atmosphere, the faded, crackling look to the film, some twisted and subtle humour and a stirling job by Paul E Respass as Carl Henry and Theresa Holly as Raelyn this is a flick that will not be to everyone’s liking, the pace being too slow for the cheap thrill gorehound for a start, but if you are prepared to let yourself go with the flow and have the patience you will be rewarded with a film that is prepared to step outside the box.

Special Features:

Making Of Documentary, Short Film: Straight Razor, Horror Happens Interview, Trailers.

  • Director: Joaquin Montalvan (USA, 2014)
  • Studio: MVD Visual 
  • Runtime: 99 mins 

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