Back in the early ’80s, my dad talked about having caught the end of a movie on Showtime where a guy wearing a giant pig’s head and another guy (who was not wearing a giant pig’s head) fought each other with chainsaws. This was shared in a “Can you believe what kind of crap gets made?” manner. I wasn’t a fan of horror movies at the time and had no interest in seeing the chainsaw duel.
Several years later, as a horror movie fanatic, I wanted to know what that mystery flick was. But pre-internet it was difficult to research stuff like this. You could just type “pig head chainsaw fight” into Google and get your answer. I ended up seeing the image on the cover of a back issue of Fangoria and had my answer: Motel Hell.
I rented it, watched a little bit of it, had to return it before I was done, and then somehow left Motel Hell as a massive gap in my horror movie viewing credentials for the next thirty years. Every once in a while I’d say “How is it possible that I’ve never seen Motel Hell?” and then I’d resume living a life where I’d never seen Motel Hell.
Yes, the Plaza Theater in Atlanta is playing Motel Hell this week, so I saw it on the big screen! And I loved it. It is one WEIRD movie. It’s hard to imagine it getting a wide theatrical release, but not only was it in theaters across the country, it was the #1 movie at the box office the weekend it opened! I was expecting the satire to be more in the vein of something like Mother’s Day, so the detours into pure silliness were a surprise.
And the Plaza Theater is playing Killer Klowns From Outer Space, which I’ve seen millions of time but never in the theater. So I did a double feature. The non-clown comedy relief is truly painful (I mean, really, really, really bad) but everything clown-related is awesome.
Now back to work on Bang Up…