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DUNGEONS & DRAGONS: HONOR AMONG THIEVES




Meatcleaver Massacre

Comparison:

  • Original Version
  • Theatrical Version
Release: Feb 14, 2024 - Author: brainbug1602 - Translator: Muck47 - external link: IMDB

The theatrical version was compared with the original version.

Student Mason is annoyed by his professor Cantrell, who has just given a lecture about the powerful demon Morak. Along with his friends Sean, Dirk, and Phil, he decides to break into Cantrell's house in the evening, but the situation spirals out of control. Mason knocks Cantrell unconscious, and Cantrell's wife and both children are killed. Paralyzed and unable to speak, Cantrell manages to summon Morak to exact bloody revenge on his behalf.

Hollywood Meatcleaver Massacre is an absolutely insane film. The film's title is obviously inspired by The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, although no one in the entire film is killed with a meat cleaver. The "Hollywood" in the title comes from the fact that the film's plot takes place in Los Angeles. In terms of content, it's a kind of supernatural home invasion revenge movie with a rather simple plot. For rather flimsy reasons, Mason feels disturbed by Professor Cantrell, which leads to his family being killed and Mason summoning the demon from the hospital, who then kills the men one by one. Detective Wexler is assigned to the case, guessing more or less in the dark until he unexpectedly realizes that Cantrell is behind the murders.

Even more mysterious than the supernatural demon are various elements of the plot. For example, the men wear poorly sewn triangle emblems on their jackets without the meaning being explained. Why Sean, Dirk, and Phil even hang out with the jerk Mason remains unclear, just as Mason's intentions to kill during the attack. The demon Morak then turns out to be a kind of bearded Bigfoot slime monster and is as ridiculous as it sounds. Contrastingly, there are a few very well-made surreal dream sequences. Out of sheer necessity to include some exploitation elements, Phil is seen going into a brothel. Maria Arnold appears as a prostitute in this scene.

The film has a prologue and epilogue with Christopher Lee. According to Christopher Lee, he originally created these for another producer who sold them on without his knowledge. Lee was completely surprised to see himself in Hollywood Meatcleaver Massacre and to have his name used for promotion. He planned to take legal action, but was advised against it as it would be costly and time-consuming. Evan Lee, the director's name, is a pseudonym. Keith Burns started the film and was then replaced by Ed Wood.

Two versions on UK Blu-ray

On October 23, 2023, the film was released by 101 Films in the UK on Blu-ray. Alongside the theatrical version, the Blu-ray includes the original version of the film, which differs solely in the introduction and conclusion by Christopher Lee. One should definitely watch the theatrical version, as Christopher Lee's explanations are very amusing and most likely completely fabricated. Nevertheless, Lee manages to sell them to the audience with the necessary seriousness as believable.

Runtimes:

Theatrical version: 84:12 min.
Original version: 77:06 min.

[00:00:00][00:00:00]

The theatrical version has an intro with Christopher Lee, sitting in a study on a chair. He stands up and sits at the desk, talking about the soul's ability to leave the body and recounting events from various cultures. He tells of Guntram the Rich, who, while sleeping, left his body in the form of a snake and found a treasure. Alongside these benevolent tales, there are also said to be evil spirits.

Lee: "What you are about to see, you may find hard to believe. It is a tale of the supernatural, an experience of the occult, beyond the miracle of mere prophecy and surely the prophets were gifted for seeing clairvoyance. The concept of a journeying soul is as old as Man, a ghostly spirit that leaves or returns to the body of its own volition. Sleep or trance being the temporary. Death being the permanent absence of the soul. By that reasoning, the ancient Japanese would only allow their Mikado to be barbered during sleep, while his soul was away and could suffer no injury from wayward scissors. Often the soul is conceived as a bird ready to take flight, yet among some Finns, the soul frees itself from the sleeping body in the form of a bat. The Franks told a curious story of King Guntram the Rich, who one day rested his head in the lap of a faithful servant to nap under a tree. Suddenly, the servant saw a tiny snake crawl from the king's mouth along the grass to the bank of a stream. The servant drew his sword from its scabbard and laid it across the stream, providing a bridge for the slithering creature, who crossed over and after some time returned to reenter the King's mouth. On awakening, the rested king told his servant of a marvelous dream he had just dreamed. How he crossed a great river over an enormous iron bridge and stumbled upon a hidden treasure. The astonished servant blurted out what he had witnessed, and the coincidence so intrigued the king and his servant that they thereupon set forth across the stream, recalling directions of the dream. And thus did Guntram the Rich discover, in reality, the fortune of gold, silver and precious gems with which he built the castle of Habsburg. A harmless story at worst of benevolent spirits, but what of evil manifestations, the invocation of evil spirits and the manipulation of their demonic powers, enlisting supernatural help to destroy an adversary? Even the gods could not dissuade vengeful demons like the Furies, the Erinyes, coal-black, dog-headed hags with bats' wings, bloodshot eyes and snakes for hair. Mad goddesses who avenged crimes of parricide and perjury wielding torches and brass-studded whips. Those same Furies that hounded Oedipus to death and pursued Orestes beyond the point of madness, even to hell, where they continue to torture their victims eternally. Could there possibly be even more destructive spirits? Judge for yourself."



TV: 3:53 min.


[01:17:06][01:21:00]

After the credits, Christopher Lee is seen again in the study. He mentions examples of cultures where seemingly supernatural phenomena occur. He talks about two shamans who competed in a meeting and influenced the weather.

Lee: "Fantasy or reality? Do such powers exist? Need there be further proof than that provided by shamans and witch doctors, whose influence over physical phenomena has been tirelessly investigated and substantially verified, from the Egyptian Mata-ka-dows to the Alaskan Angakkuqs, who have displayed the uncanny ability to control the wind, and cause drought, famine, and pestilence. They could send showers of vermin and sink ships at sea, or cause mysterious outbreaks of fire. They could influence men to love or hate, or even to go mad with hallucinogenic delusions. And if the shamans could so influence our presence then what control have we over our future? One day, at a shaman convention they held at the Hilton Fuzhou, an Angakkuq priest with disdain for the east, up and challenged a Mata-ka-dow. The other conventioneers gathered to watch the two shamans compete, and made bets on the side as to which could provide the utmost miraculous feat. The atmosphere soon turned electric, and the Angakkuq first showed his skill by making it snow out of caverns below, then defrost overflowing uphill. Then the Mata-ka-dow quickly countered with an abracadabracal trick, just by murmuring words turned that wet snow to curds, which formed oceans, quite milky and thick. Then the Angakkuq hocused and pocused till golf ball sized pebbles of sand bounced crazily down, inundating the town,and rebounding all over the land. "Mere child's play," the Mata-ka-dow cried, and sparked off a squall from his tears. But not one to cry, the Angakkuq guy made a monsoon come out of his ears. And when Mata-ka-dow made it thunder, his opponent responded with quakes. And if one caused a flood leaving acres of mud, then the other imbued it with snakes. The hours the two shamans competed causing blizzard and bluster and blight, as the onlookers cheered each phenomenon weird. And the contest went on through the night. Until earlier the following morning, when it seemed neither could be outdone, the Angakkuq blew the light of the moon, and the Mata-ka-dow burst the sun."



TV: 3:12 min.