It’s time for #TrashOrTerrorTuesday
…when I examine a film that’s been languishing in my personal library to determine if it is #Trash or #Terror
– or more importantly, if it deserves to stay in my collection.
And so, out from the dusty shelves of #VHS tapes & DVDs comes…
Andre the Butcher (2005) by #PhilipCruz
A group of cheerleaders wreck their car and run afoul of a slaughterhouse worker turned supernatural killer.
“No matter how you slice it, he’s pure terror.”
I somehow wound up with two DVD copies of Andre the Butcher (2005). I bought one (at a video store blowout, I believe), and I guess somebody gave me one. I must’ve watched the one I bought fifteen years ago, or so, but I really couldn’t remember anything about it. So, I decided that it was time to put it to the #TrashOrTerrorTuesday test.
I did not remember that porn star/legend Ron Jeremy was in this, playing the former slaughterhouse worker turned supernatural killer, no less. Depending on your feelings about him, that could be either a plus or minus, I suppose.
The cheerleaders are largely unknown actors. April Billingsley, who played Jasmine, has gone on to appear in about 40 things since Andre the Butcher. Heather Joy Budner, who played Cookie, has only been in five things. Elizabeth Mullins, who played Kristy (the “fat” cheerleader who wasn’t all that fat), has no other acting credits in movies. She has apparently done a lot of theatre.
Maury Sterling, who played Hoss (an escaped convict), is a successful character actor with over a hundred credits.
Andre the Butcher is much more of a campy comedy than a scary horror film. I think that it aspired to being something like a Troma movie, or even a John Waters movie. It has sleazy intentions, but doesn’t really deliver much actual sleaze. There’s a lot of sleazy talk and implied sleaze, but not much that we actually see.
Andre the Butcher declares itself quite early on, when a cheerleader lifts her top to flash someone. Director Philip Cruz makes a joke out of the moment by having the words “NO NUDITY CLAUSE” appear over her breasts. So, they kind of have the moment, without letting us see it.
I was quite surprised when much later in the film, there were a couple of brief glimpses of naked breasts. They were, however, the breasts of a body double. So as far as I’m concerned, that’s almost the same as having no breasts at all.
Don’t get me wrong. There are plenty of fine movies – some of them personal favourites of mine – that don’t include any nudity. Andre the Butcher, however, presents itself as an over-the-top, sleazy, sexy, deliberately-in-poor-taste B-movie. And it does have its moments of pure campy fun. It just doesn’t quite commit to being what it seems to want to be.
So, what’s the verdict?
Andre the Butcher (2005) is Trash. It doesn’t have a scary bone in its body, so it can’t qualify as Terror. It’s almost the good kind of trash – and a person could certainly do a lot worse when looking for a few campy laughs, and a bit of implied sleaze. It’s no Trashterpiece, however, like The Vineyard (which I talked about in this very category not too long ago). It distracted me for an hour and half – for the second time in my life apparently – but I don’t think I will need to be visiting Andre the Butcher again anytime soon.
A group of cheerleaders wreck their car and run afoul of a slaughterhouse worker turned supernatural killer
— Angus Kohm (@AngusKohm) November 10, 2021