Blood Night: The Legend of Mary Hatchet *½
Sometimes when you rent a cheap horror DVD you’re pleasantly surprised, it’s rare that you unearth a gem, usually you get what you expect. With Blood Night you get what you expect, in fact the quotes on the cover leave you in no doubt: “The kick-ass splatter film of the year” and “Gratuitous violence and gore”. That’s exactly what it is.
Blood Night: The Legend of Mary Hatchet to give it its full title starts with Mary Mattock, nicknamed ‘Hatchet’, killing her parents after having her first period. She is sentenced to life in a mental institution where she spends her time naked; she’s raped by a night shift guard and gives birth to a still-born baby. One night she escapes from the institution and kills nurses, orderlies and beheads the guard who raped her before eventually being shot dead by two Policemen. All of this is shown before the opening titles, all 12 minutes of it, for a 78 minute movie that’s a fair chunk of premise.
20 years later a group of teenagers get together for a séance and party on the anniversary of Blood Night. The characters are basically a slasher movie check list, there’s the town nutter, Graveyard Gus (Bill Moseley) who knows all the stories and has seen Mary’s ghost; the sporty guy, the geeky guy, the party guy, the hot chick, the couple who head off early to have sex, you know what’s coming… Mary turns up and proceeds to chop off heads and generally kill the teenagers in fairly bloody ways.
The surviving kids escape from their party and run into Graveyard Gus, he drives them to the old mental asylum, informing them that Mary is searching for her dead baby. If they reunite mother and child Mary should be able to rest, however when they dig up the child’s grave they discover that the coffin is empty. Searching through the asylum records they discover that the child didn’t die, a girl, she was adopted by a local family..!
This is the type of horror flick where you have to check your brain at the door or spend the movie picking holes in the quality of the script, direction, performances, effects and all manner of production flaws. No one sets out to make a bad movie and lack of budget isn’t an excuse anymore. A good idea works no matter what, good direction and performance shine through, and there is no excuse for splatter effects given the great work done on a budget in the past. It could have been an entertaining, nasty little slasher flick but the ‘stylistic’ camera angles and horrible CGI additions to the gore ruin what chance the movie had on that score.
Quality: 1 out of 5 stars
Any good: 2 out of 5 stars