For the past thirty years, a series of brutal murders have been occuring across the nation. What was part of a secret government program to cull the population had spun out of control. In spite of the government’s efforts to contain what they started, and as the murders drifted more into conspiracy territory and urban legend, the Fleisher family continues their bloody terror and the body count continues to rise.
Such is the plot for Meathook Massacre VI: Bloodline, a series created by Dustin Ferguson in 2015. What we have here is a new entry in a long tradition of films that have played homage to The Texas Chainsaw Massacre since the 70’s. You have a masked/deformed killer and a crazed family butchering victims for the sake of cannibalistic feasts and blood rituals. In this case we have the Fleisher family as they continue their legacy of feasting on flesh and passing their traditions down generation to generation.
The one thing I like best about Meathook Massacre VI is that it very much recalls the trashy shot-on-video, DIY style of filmmaking that would have found itself packaged in a large VHS box on the shelf. It’s as nasty as it is cheap, but that’s exactly its charm. While the franchise was created by Dustin, this is the first feature film directed by our very own Jerimiah Douglas! Jerimiah has collaborated in the previous incarnation of Rude Planet, and now he’s gone off and made a movie! How about that? When you see a dear friend get the job done, there is a certain pride you have for that. Keep in mind that this is very much a backyard production; as a result, the movie does have some first time mistakes. You’re going to find a bit too much exposition and some of the scenes could use some more camera coverage to allow for the editing to be more dynamic and lend to the action. That being said, from my own experience, I can attest that what Jerimiah has done making this movie is successful for what it is. Also knowing Jerimiah personally, I can attest that his personality shines through. The highlight for me is Aunt Deb, played by Deborah Dutch. She brings a darkly comic, sleazy performance that brightens the film up. If I have any real complaints about the film is that perhaps it is a tad restrained in its tone, even under its 66 minute runtime. When it comes to underground cinema, however, it is a solid debut.
I am not familiar with the Meathook Massacre films, but they are currently a part of the SoCal Cinema Studios subscription service, I urge you to check them out!