Directed By: Fred Olen Ray
Starring: Gunnar Hansen, Linnea Quigley, Jay Richardson
Tag line: "They charge an arm and a leg!"
Trivia: While shooting a scene for this film, Jay Richardson accidentally head-butted Linnea Quigley. Neither actor broke character and they finished the scene
In most cases, everything you need to know about one of these late ‘80s horror cheapies can be found in its title (Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-a-Rama leaps immediately to mind), but when it comes to director Fred Olen Ray’s Hollywood Chainsaw Hookers, it only tells you half the story.
Jack Chandler (Jay Richardson), a Los Angeles-based private eye, has been hired to track down a teenage runaway named Samantha (Linnea Quigley). But Chandler’s investigation takes him deeper into the underbelly of L.A. than he first anticipated. In fact, all the evidence suggests that sweet little Samantha has fallen in with a very bad bunch of people, namely a religious cult (one consisting primarily of ladies of the evening) that specializes in human sacrifices, all of which are carried out with that most sacred of instruments, the chainsaw! Led by the enigmatic “Master” (Gunnar Hanson), this group has been responsible for a number of recent murders, each more grisly than the last. To close the books on this assignment, Chandler realizes he’ll have to infiltrate the cult, even if doing so ultimately costs him an arm or a leg… or both!
You expect certain things going into a movie titled Hollywood Chainsaw Hookers, and sure enough, Fred OIen Ray delivers them. Aside from its L.A. setting (which covers the “Hollywood” part), the film features a bevy of gorgeous hookers (including scream queens Linnea Quigley and Michelle Bauer, billed here as Michelle McLellan) in various stages of undress, as well as some serious chainsaw action; in an early scene, a shapely brunette (Bauer’s character) lures construction worker Bo (Jimmy Williams) back to her apartment, where she puts on an Elvis record, does a quick striptease, and carves her unsuspecting “guest” into little pieces with a chainsaw.
Of course, you can’t have a chainsaw movie without Gunnar Hansen, aka Leatherface in the classic 1974 horror flick The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (though, truth be told, this is far from the big guy’s finest hour).
But the movie is more than a nudity-fueled splatter fest; Hollywood Chainsaw Hookers is also a nifty film noir spoof, with Richardson doing a better-than-average job as the gumshoe / narrator of the story, delivering lines that, on occasion, are pretty darn witty (late in the movie, after being knocked unconscious and taken to an undisclosed location by some of the Master’s minions, Jack, in his dual role as narrator, observes: “If my head wasn't hurting so much I'd have sworn I was in heaven. Heaven for guys who like big tits”), and what it lacks in gore effects (which, in most cases, is limited to a few spurts of the red stuff flying around the room), it more than makes up for in dialogue.
If occasionally clever low budget horror fare is your cup of tea, then Hollywood Chainsaw Hookers is certain to quench your thirst.