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Toolbox Murders, The (1978)
Movie Review by The Mortician

Toolbox Murders, The (1978) The first 20-30 minutes of this movie are my favorite! I remember renting the flick on Beta back in '83 and watching it over and over again. The first half hour, anyway. I've been watching this movie over 30 years and have yet to see the whole thing! You see, after the first 30 minutes, it becomes a big snooze-fest! I've tried to watch the whole thing on many occasions, but somehow always just lose interest or fall asleep! But wow, the first 30 minutes have Cameron Mitchell walking around a cheap hotel or apartment complex, spying on hot naked women and dispatching of them with his tool, er, tools in his box! Nail guns, screwdrivers, and hammers are the choice of weapons, and the women are natural and hot. Plenty of curvy breasts, ass, and even bush on display, especially in my favorite scene, featuring porn starlet Kelly Nichols (AKA Marianne Walker) fully nude and masturbating in the bathtub (to the tune "Pretty Lady") before the killer dispatches her! Nichols is hawt in her role, expertly teasing herself WITHOUT REALLY EVEN TOUCHING HER NIPPLES, I've noticed in recent years- but that's okay, we get a better view of them that way! Yes, I've watched her in that tub for decades and pleasured myself while she pleasured herself, so...whaddaya gonna do? It's just a GREAT scene! Actress Marciee Drake gets topless and I think another gal does as well, and the kill scenes are well-staged if not ultra cheap. Mitchell wears a ski mask and hums to himself jovially as he dispatches the lovely ladies. This goes on for 30 min or so and then the movie turns into this drab Hardee Boys style mystery, with Cameron kidnapping this gal that supposedly looks like his daughter, who died in a car crash. He ties her to a bed (fully clothed, unfortunately) and the rest of the movie is dull dialogue, two guys searching for the kidnapped girl, and a boring ending that never lives up to the promise of the first 30 minutes! If only the movie would've continued in the fine tradition that it started with! Voyeurism, nekkid ladies, kills, more nekkid ladies, more kills...but noooo, they blow it with this ridiculous mystery for the remainder of the flick. So this is one of my favorite 30 minute slasher movies, but for discriminating wackos like me, no need to watch beyond the 30 minute mark. If only someone would remake this PROPERLY and just keep the sexy girls and kills going for 80 minutes straight, THEN we'd have a classic!

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