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Chainsaw Sally Print E-mail
User Rating: / 7
Written by Elaine Lamkin   
Friday, 11 January 2008

Directed by: Jimmyo Burril
Written by: Jimmyo Burril
Produced by: Mark Redfield, Stuart Voytilla
Cinematography by: Mike Flanagan
Editing by: Sean Paul Murphy
Music by: Jamie Taylor
Cast: April Monique Burril, Mark Redfield, David R. Calhoun, Kristen Hudson, Alec Joseph, Gunnar Hansen, Herschell Gordon Lewis
Year: 2004
Country: USA
Language: English
Color: Color
Runtime: 85 Minutes

Distributor: Planet X Entertainment/Redfield Arts
Official Website:

“Meet the Girl of Your Screams.”

When I first heard the title of this movie, I thought “Oh boy.  Here we go…” and just expected another really bad, straight-to-DVD indie. But I was pleasantly surprised by “Chainsaw Sally”.  Although it IS obviously a very low-budget film, shot on DV and some of the actors even designed their own costumes, the film also has cameos from some horror legends.  Gunnar Hansen plays Sally’s father (AND we get to see him wield a chainsaw again) and “Two Thousand Maniacs!” director Herschell Gordon Lewis shows up as mild-mannered hardware store owner, Mr. Gordon.  I consider this a great homage to all of the early 1970s horror films and Jimmyo does a wonderful job.

The premise of the movie is that Sally (April Monique Burril) and her cross-dressing brother Ruby (Alec Joseph) witnessed the brutal murder of their parents fifteen years ago and have taken refuge in an old trailer just a few yards from their former family home.  By day, Sally is a meek, mousy town librarian but by night, she is a chainsaw-wielding avenger, going after anyone who threatens her little family’s existence.  Oh, and she and her brother are also cannibals.  Now enter a greedy, real estate speculator, Harvey Benton (David R. Calhoun) who wants to build what he calls, modestly, “Benton’s Quest”, on Sally’s family’s land.  But the current landowner, Steve Kellerman (Mark Redfield), wants to research the history of this land he owns but had never visited before Benton entered the picture.  And what better place to do research than a library…?  Benton has a slutty attorney, Cynthia Prescott (Kristin Hudson) working with him, who will do whatever it takes to get Kellerman to sign on the dotted line.  None of this sits well with our little librarian.

April Monique Burril, who, as Sally, looks and acts like a combination of a Goth Toni Collette (the mom in “The Sixth Sense”), Baby Firefly and a female Leatherface (she even does his “dance” in one scene which is a lot of fun).  She has some great lines (“Oops, dental records”) and really seems to be enjoying her part as being Sally.  Evan as “meek” Miss Sally the librarian, Burril oozes a sexy yet sinister aura.  As her brother Ruby, Alec Joseph is equally “out there” and has some great lines (as well as costumes and makeup).  Their home, a decaying Airstream trailer, has wonderful production design; early Halloween, I call it, with skeletons on the walls, fairy lights, 1950s-looking appliances and horror movie posters adorning nearly every square inch.  They even spend their “quality family time” watching old slasher movies on TV.  And the cellar they have built under the trailer…well, everyone has to have a “rec room”.

There are quite a few gory scenes where Sally wreaks her own particular brand of retribution (one was quite original and a bit gruesome), some nudity (although male viewers will be disappointed that the voluptuous Miss Burril only shucks down to her fishnets and bustiers) and one quick-cut sex scene.  An interesting bit of trivia is that Miss Burril’s own step-daughter, Lilli, plays Sally as a child witnessing her parents’ murder.

While Gunnar Hansen’s part is only a cameo in this film, rumor has it that he will return in the sequel, along with his “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” co-stars Marilyn “Sally Hardesty” Burns, Ed “The Hitchhiker” Neal and John “Grandpa” Dugan.  And I hope we get to see more of Mr. Gordon the hardware storeowner.

The cinematography is beautiful and the soundtrack really works with the film, being full of punk/rockabilly songs.  I want to see more of Sally and Ruby and I recommend folks try to track this indie gem down as it’s a lot of fun, especially if you’re a “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” fan.

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3.22 Copyright (C) 2007 Alain Georgette / Copyright (C) 2006 Frantisek Hliva. All rights reserved."

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