Review : Toolbox Murders (2004)

Toolbox Murders, directed by Tobe Hooper and released in 2004, is a remake of the movie of the same name from 1978.

Nell and Steven, a young married couple, move into an apartment building who used to be a hotel house for actors. When renovations start, suspicious murders take place. Nell soon discovers that evil forces may be responsible for the residents’ gruesome murders.

Toolbox Murders has a heavy Texas Chainsaw Massacre vibe. The image is very grainy which gives Toolbox Murders an old school look. Through the entire film, I felt like Tobe Hooper was trapped in his own trademark style (at this point, I have to confess a fact that will certainly make you raise an eyebrow : I greatly dislike The Texas Chainsaw Massacre).

The characters were mostly over-the –top and purely designed to be killed. Nell, the main character, made some questionnable decisions. She is scared of her own shadow and yet goes looking for danger which felt out-of-character. The scenario also seemed ridiculous at times, especially with the addition of black magic. Halfway through the movie, the tone changes from a serious slasher to a silly gore-fest.

However, despite not bringing anything new to the genre, Toolbox Murders was still an entertaining slasher. I especially enjoyed the variety of the kills and the weapons used. The killer uses a different weapon for each murder which added to the entertainment value as none of the kills are boring or repetitive.

I did enjoy Toolbox Murders, it was a good slasher but after watching it, the only thing I really want is to find and watch the original.


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