Massacre County (aka Condado Macabro) Movie Review
Written by Joel Harley
Released by One Eyed Films
Directed by André de Campos Mello and Marcos DeBrito
Written by Marcos DeBrito
2015, 113 minutes, Not yet rated
Leonardo Miggiorin as Theo
Paulo Vespúcio as Investigator Moreira
Francisco Gaspar as clown Cangaço / Antonio
Rafael Raposo as Beto
Marcela Moura as Real Estate Agent
Larissa Queiroz as Mari
Fernando de Paula as clown Bola 8 / 8-Ball
There's no greater disparity in life than the quality of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre and that of subsequent horror movies which also have the word 'massacre' in the title. Most of which, you'll notice, tend to be unashamed rip-offs of Tobe Hooper's masterpiece anyway.
The latest in this long line of imitators is Massacre County, which skews so close in places to the mighty slasher movie that it could probably qualify as a remake. Holidaying at a rented mansion in an isolated woodland, a group of friends fall afoul of the local psychopath contingent – specifically an enormous skin-mask wearing madman and his chainsaw. Unfortunately, unlike Leatherface, Jonas takes his sweet while in getting down to business, leaving us with the most infuriating gang of youths since... well, Franklin in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.
Not since American Pie have I actively hoped someone didn't get laid like I hoped the young men of Massacre County wouldn't get laid. Specifically Beto, who might just be the most horrible slasher movie character I've ever seen; a grotesque caricature whose inability to even once act like a plausible human being makes the film a chore to watch. That Massacre County never, ever convinces of its characters' basic human existence wouldn't matter so much if it didn't force us to spend so long with the little bastards. 113 minutes is long for a slasher movie – and even longer when most of that is spent in the company of Beto and his friends. Not that they convince as friends either – the film fails to give us any compelling reason why these people would choose to spend time with each other, let alone permit a Viz cartoon like Beto access to their various erogenous zones. At least they're afforded more respect than Personified Fat Joke Vanessa – the butt of the film's most unsavoury jokes. But it's okay! Because it's all done in a faux-Grindhouse style, so it's supposed to be awful! (Exclamation marks denote sarcasm).
There's the bare bones of a good story there though, which makes its failures all the more depressing. It has an interesting setup and structure (involving a malevolent clown, who sadly is as irritating and horrible as everyone else) and a couple of genuinely smart ideas. It finishes on a twist so clever that it almost made me forget about how much I'd hated everything up until that point.