Latest Reviews

  • Interview: Jonah Ehrenreich

    We have an exclusive Q&A with Jonah Ehrenreich, star of the film Hooked Up. Read More
  • The Bunker: Volume 1

    Five friends find a bunker in the woods filled with letters from their future selves saying they will destroy the world.  Now what? Read More
  • SNAFU: Heroes: An Anthology of Military Horror

    SNAFU: Heroes: An Anthology of Military Horror brings readers top-notch gore, action, and storytelling from four very distinct, talented voices.  Read More
  • SNAFU: An Anthology of Military Horror

    With zombies, monsters, giant bugs, ghosts, Bigfoot and more, SNAFU: An Anthology of Military Horror has something for everyone. Read More
  • Grindhouse: Drive In, Bleed Out #3

    Deputy Garcia returns in Blood Lagoon.  She's battled killer bees from Mars, but and now she takes on giant ticks.  Ewww. Read More
  • The Black Hood #2

    Officer Greg Hettinger's life falls apart around him in a haze of pills and violence, pushing him to vigilantism. Read More
  • Blind Woman's Curse

    If you see a cat lapping up someone's blood in the street, Zig suggests you take it home. Read More
  • Don't Go in the Woods

    Zig is surprised to see this guilty pleasure get so much love on Blu-ray. Read More
  • Hooked Up

    Hooked Up bills itself as the first film shot on an iPhone. RJ wonders if it's just a gimmick. Read More
  • Hexed #8

    Lucifer is pissed and she takes the battle right to Madame Cymbaline, not caring how many die in her path. Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10

Latest News

  • Carpe Noctem: The Kitchen Sink of Horror Comics? +

    Hashtag Comics announces new horror series mixing vampires, zombies, Lovecraftian monsters and more. Read More
  • Spread..Uhh…Spreads This April +

    Justin Jordan and Kyl Strahm’s sci-fi horror series gets its first trade paperback in April from Image Comics. Read More
  • Something to Scream About +

    Zig can't stop Screaming about this new line up coming from our friends at Scream Factory. Read More
  • Blood Feud Brings Deep Fried Horror This October +

    Oni Press announces new series from Cullen Bunn, Drew Moss, and Nick Filardi that mixes horror and humor in the Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3


Chop Shop Movie Review


Written by Eric "The Hitman" Strauss


DVD released by Maverick Entertainment



Written and directed by Simuel Denell Rankins
2003, Region 1, 90 minutes, Not rated

Rob Rose as Joe
Mark Schell as Billy
Michelle Lozano as Frankie
Yayao Hsueh as Ling
Martina Marie as the narrator
and introducing Shannon Michaels as Lisa Stewart




Chop Shop is a low-rent version of I Spit on Your Grave, a grindhouse rape-and-revenge flick with racial overtones that pits a young black woman against a trio of redneck mechanics and their token Asian.


Unfortunately, there's a whole lot of buildup to not a lot of payoff, unless a grimy mechanic dancing in his tighty-whities at gunpoint is your idea of a money shot.


The repeated rapes of Lisa Stewart, while certainly reprehensible and violent, are hardly graphic or gratuitous, and the vengeance sequence doesn't even fill the final third of the movie.


Meanwhile, Chop Shop is betrayed at every turn by its low budget, causing rampant problems with lighting and volume levels that render sights unseen and words unheard.


That's not to say there aren't some strong points to the film. Writer/director Simuel Denell Rankins takes every opportunity to shoot lead Shannon Michaels' long legs from any possible angle. And Michaels is more than just a nice body, playing a maniac with gusto, even if her transformation from victim to violator takes too long and the script fails to flesh out her character enough to provide any empathy.


There are a couple of interesting twists, one involving Michelle Lozano's body-shop secretary Frankie — Stewart's last, best hope for salvation from her rapists — and the other at the very end (of course).


Other than that, however, the script really fails the film. There's almost no setup or character development, and several angles are introduced but never pay off.


There's a journal, which Stewart carries everywhere — even while jogging; even while jogging angry.


There's a documentary-style presentation, including an ongoing interview of another young woman.


And of course, there's the racial element (Chop Shop is distributed under the Maverick Urban label), which manifests itself in Southern accents and a random Confederate flag license plate.


All of them might have meant something. None of them wind up meaning anything.


That's really the trouble with Chop Shop. Outside of some decent gore and not-unimaginative kills at the end, there's really nothing for it to hang its hat on.



Video, Audio and Special Features:


Audio/video and special features will not be graded, as this is a screener disc.





Video: n/a
Audio: n/a
Features: n/a






Watching Chop Shop was a frustrating experience, and not just because of the constant need to adjust the volume. The rape sequence takes up half the film but, surprisingly, little action occurs. Then the "transformation of Lisa" sequence takes another 20 minutes, and, not surprisingly, little action occurs. When the vengeance finally comes down on the rapists in the last 25 minutes, there's finally some life to the film, but by then, it was tough to care.


(Weapons of Choice: Mitsubishi 1080 series 42" TV, Sony DVP-CX995V DVD player, Bose Lifestyle 25 Series II speakers, Apple iBook G4 and, in certain situations, Panasonic 27" TV, Panasonic A110 DVD player and Bose TriPort headphones.)


Want to comment on this review? Head over to the Horrortalk Review Forum.

© 2007 No use of this review is permitted without expressed permission from




  • 1