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Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Review: Hacksaw

Director: Anthony Leone

Screenplay: Anthony Leone

Year: 2021

An old building is scheduled to be demolished, and a couple is heading that way to see it before it's gone. There is an urban legend that says that inside the building dwells a serial killer known for mutilating his victims. The couple will find out that the story of the killer is not just a legend. 

"Hacksaw" begins with a brutal and bloody torture scene that is hard to watch. The special effects are impressive, considering the low budget this movie had, and make every second feel painful. This scene effectively raises the excitement on gorehounds about what it holds, but there is nothing but a disappointing surprise. 

Once the opening scene goes by, we are introduced to the protagonists Ashley (Amy Cay) and Tommy (Brian Patrick Butler; “South of 8”), with whom we will be for most of the movie. The acting from both is fairly good, and they convey realistic couple chemistry. However, we are with them for so long without anything happening besides the ordinary couple conversations that not even the actors’ good work is enough to make the scenes easier to swallow. 

Mixed with the protagonists’ scenes, there are scenes from a badly acted TV (or Youtube) show. Not only are these scenes boring, but they don't have any relevance to the plot and seem to have been included just to stretch the runtime. This is evidence of the lack of creativity to stretch a story that had no business being so long.

Now that I have mentioned the runtime, this movie goes for approximately 68 minutes, and it still feels too long. Only the opening scene and the last minutes offer something interesting, while the rest are only fill-up scenes. This movie would have been more effective as a short film, without most of the fill-up and better highlighting the gruesome deaths in the beginning and end.

"Hacksaw" suffers from having two good ideas that will get the attention of gorehounds, but it was forcefully turned into a full-length film, and it was not stretched out well. For a runtime that barely goes above the hour mark, it feels long and slow because of a large amount of fill-up irrelevant to the plot, which neither is entertaining. Two brutal death scenes and not much more is what we get from this movie.

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