Mardi Gras Massacre (1978)
Directed By: Jack Weiss
Starring: Curt Dawson, William Metzo, Gwen Arment, Laura Misch Owens
Synopsis: A killer is loose in New Orleans during Mardi Gras, killing prostitutes and the police are doing all they can to track him down.
Thoughts: Like most horror fans, I am intrigued by the Video Nasty list and often use it as a source for obscure horror movies to search out. This was the exact reason for Mardi Gras Massacre landing in my collection recently.
Mardi Gras Massacre certainly embodies a gritty 70s horror flick. I didn’t think it was nearly as disturbing as something like Last House on the Left, but there was no mistaking its era. There are large amounts of gratuitous nudity and plenty of gore. The FX were very reminiscent of Herschell Gordon Lewis, which is part of the reason that the movie isn’t quite as disturbing as it tried to be. If you would take todays FX and put them in this movie, it would never get a wide distribution.
The over the top gore is part of the charm here. If you are looking for a genre masterpiece, keep looking. The acting is atrocious and the storyline is paper thin, but for some reason, Mardi Gras Massacre worked for me. It was about what I was expecting when I sat down.
I can see why this one landed on the Nasty list. Like I said, there is a lot of nudity, most of it full frontal and while the gore/kills were pretty hokey, Weiss didn’t use any cut shots, it all happens on camera, most of it close-ups (although into obviously fake victims).
If you are a fan of 70s horror or have an interest in the Video Nasty list, check this one out. It won’t appeal to everyone, but if you know what you are getting in to, and you still sit down to watch it, I imagine you will enjoy it.