MASSACRE UP NORTH *** Canada 2001 Dir: Paul Stoichevski. 100 mins
The only directing credit for Paul Stoichevski, this Canadian shot on video slasher movie was largely shot in the late 90’s, released in 2001 and then missing, presumed dead until a 2016 release courtesy of British Columbia-based Canuxploitation specialists Shivers Entertainment.
The movie’s production problems extended to a leading actor who dropped out, with Stoichevski stepping in as the killer who, having been horribly disfigured during a family get together (“Don’t play next to the barbeque, Leslie!”), grows up to be a brutal yet sympathetic psychopath, sometimes killing folks in a medieval knight costume. An enthusiastic opening – a bizarre interracial coupling that ends with bloody boobies – sets the tone and the movie oddly predates Rob Zombie’s HALLOWEEN in its structure, capturing Leslie’s miserable, persecuted childhood before returning to his adult antics in the second half. It’s overlong and less successful when it shifts into dumb police procedural territory, but the gore is fun – particularly during a pre-HOSTEL castration torture interlude and a good old fashioned electric drill to the cranium in Fulci-inspired close-up. Reflecting the era to which it pays homage, Stoichevski is fond of offing folks during shagging sessions, and the women have a tendency to be topless when getting slaughtered.
Review by Steven West
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