The Thrill Killers


Action / Crime / Horror / Thriller

Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 36%
IMDb Rating 5.7 10 411

murder gore producer escaped mental patient motorcycle chase

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Plot summary

Uploaded by: FREEMAN
November 12, 2022 at 12:30 AM

Top cast

642.83 MB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 9 min
P/S ...

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Gafke 8 / 10

Pretty nifty

I may as well admit something right up front: I will never give a totally negative review to a Ray Dennis Steckler film. I LOVE Steckler's films! They're so corny and cheesy, full of good intentions and a lot of fun. Thrill Killers is no exception. Though it is, by far, Steckler's darkest and most serious film, it's still a wild and weird good time.

Steckler himself plays Mad Dog, a psychopath who roams the streets of L.A., killing at random and often for no reason whatsoever. Mad Dog's brother, in the meantime, has escaped from an insane asylum with a couple of buddies. Also in the meantime, sexy Liz Renay has an argument with her struggling actor husband and flees into the hills to see her sister, who runs a roadside diner. Still with me? The psychos and the sexpot all meet up at the diner, and of course, all hell breaks loose.

There's some really great stuff here: Carolyn Brandt is chased through an empty house by an ax-wielding maniac whilst the radio plays the story of Little Red Riding Hood. The world's phoniest looking decapitation is also here, as well as posters of Stecklers previous films plastered all over the walls of the diner. There's also a great chase scene, with Steckler making a run for it on horseback! But not before Liz punches him right in the face and knocks him on his bony butt in a scene that made me laugh out loud. It even has a happy ending.

This film is pure Steckler, which will attract as many people as it will repel. You either like his films or you don't...and I love them. This is one of his very best.

Reviewed by Scarecrow-88 8 / 10

The Thrill Killers

Ray Dennis Steckler directs and stars as bug-eyed maniac with a buzz-cut("I hate people!People are cheap!")whose brother is one of three lunatics having escaped an asylum for the criminally insane.

Gary Kent(..this is the third film I've seen of this guy and all three have him cast as a psycho, such as "Girls in Chains" and "The Forest")is the claustrophobic nut with a knife, with a short fuse. Herb Robins is squirrelly Herbie, never relinquishing his axe(..which is used on an innocent couple with plans to fix up a house where the deranged nuts are hiding, startling them), always desiring to bury it into somebody.Keith O'Brien is Keith, Steckler's brother. Steckler is Mort "Mad Dog" Click, and no one is safe in his presence(..he shoots a Latino traveling salesman for his car, and stabs a dancehall hostess in her rattrap apartment with a pair of scissors, on the verge of attacking a kid in her yard if mama hadn't intervened).

The movie opens as an indictment of Hollywood, using the troubles plaguing actor Joe Saxon(Joseph Bardo), whose career isn't developing well. His wife, Liz(Liz Renay), wants out of Tinseltown, a former actress who understood all too well the difficulties of securing projects in Hollywood. The film soon moves out of the city and into the mountainous desert of Topanga Canyon as the trio of loonies surprise Joe, Liz, Liz's sister Carol(..played by Steckler's wife-of-the-time, Carolyn Brandt)and a movie director scouting locations, pinning them temporarily in a diner(..which Carol runs and the director wishes to use as a setting where a murder occurs, to add a hint of irony to the proceedings). Soon Keith calls brother to come pick him up as the trio soon run into trouble with Joe whose heroism ruins their escape plans( does Carol who adds a special ingredient to Keith's coffee).

The film is far more coherent and exciting than Steckler's more notorious cult hit, "The Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living and Became Mixed-Up Zombies!!?" Here you have three major chase sequences. The first has newlywed couple Linda(Laura Benedict)and Ron(Ron Burr) besieged by the insane trio, with ill results, neither able to escape, innocence destroyed. The second has Gary pursuing Liz with Joe not far behind, soon resulting in a climb up a mountain, concluding in a rather suspenseful struggle with one plummeting to his death. The third is a doozy..Mad Dog survives several policemen, engaging in gunfire as he sneaks from behind them, soon shooting a cowboy(..stealing his hat!), hopping on his horse and riding down a nearby dirt-road with a motorcycle cop in hot pursuit! What's neat is Steckler's acknowledgment that the scenes with him as Mad Dog were actually not written in the script, used to pad out the movie! And, they were probably my favorite scenes! This, I think, would make an ideal double feature with The Sadist, Steckler one of those filmmakers who was ushering in a different kind of cinema as the studio system's foundation was shaken with an underground independent movement on the rise. While obviously tame compared to more abrasive, ultra-violent fare in the 70's, The Thrill Killers is a film which one might look at as a pioneer in how shock-cinema would later evolve.

Reviewed by funkyfry 8 / 10

Underrated psychothriller with great in-theatre promotion

Fun cheapie in black and white, fairly well photographed. You're lucky if (like me and others out here in Oakland CA) you got to see it in a theater with Steckler himself and his cronies (including the weary Will Viharo) running through the crowd with axes on cue with the "hypnovision" process on the screen. Weird murder movie plot similar to the later "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" (which owes this movie a lot) has a family of maniacs and their friends on a killing spree in a desert ranch area (looks like somewhere up Coldwater Canyon). The finale has director Steckler on horse evading a cop on a motorbike who can't seem to catch up! Priceless.

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