butcher, baker, nightmare maker (1981)

So, uh, er, wow. Have you ever heard of this movie? I hadn’t until the other day when I was searching ;drive-in movies; on Prime. I looked at the synopsis and it went something like “Something something something something in this lunatic cult classic” or something. The IMDB blurb has this to advertise: “An orphaned teenager finds himself being dominated by his aunt who’s hell-bent on keeping him with her…at all costs.”. Then, the IMBD approved user storyline – by someone named Huggo – gives us this:

Seventeen year old high school senior Billy Lynch was raised by his maternal aunt, Cheryl Roberts, with who he has lived since the age of three, when his parents died in a tragic accident. As never married Aunt Cheryl has not dated over that time, it has been only her and Billy in the big, old house next to the woods. Billy hopes to get a basketball scholarship to the University of Denver, where his girlfriend of one year, Julie Linden, will be attending. Aunt Cheryl, in her possessiveness of Billy, doesn’t let Julie into the house and doesn’t want Billy to go away to college. What those around her don’t know is that Cheryl is deranged and will do whatever it takes to keep Billy all to herself. What Billy also does not know is that there is an unknown third in his and Aunt Cheryl’s relationship, that third who is either the cause of or has exacerbated her derangement. Aunt Cheryl’s actions lead to Billy being implicated in a murder, Billy’s plea of innocence which is not helped by the narrow-mindedness of the lead police detective, hyper-masculine Lieutenant Joe Carlson. Billy, those close to him and anyone who gets too close to discovering the truth about Aunt Cheryl could be in danger at her hands in the process.—Huggo

dot dot dot – ok! and there goes half my post!

As this this started off, one of the first things I noticed was that this is directed by none other than William “I Keep Knocking Up Elizabeth Montgomery” Asher. OK – this can’t be anything more than a made for TV 80s movie along the lines of Bewitched, right? And then, two minutes into the thing someone’s head gets mashed off by a tree through a front window of a car. I’m listening! And – even though this things gets pretty boring for the next hour (at least) the end is kind of good and meets those early 80s r-rating parameters but, we should get down to the nitty gritty here because this should certainly not be considered a good movie or something worth going out of your way for.

Our Billy here is a guy named Jimmy McNichol who seemed familiar but I’m probably confusing him with one of the Cassidy brothers. He spends a lot of this movie with his shirts off and his shorts short and there’s even a shower scene with his naked body where he whips on a towel and turns around to confront his aunt and you can clearly see he was excited about something there. Note – he’s supposed to be seventeen but this was 1981 so, right? Also – if you were a horny kid in the early 80s and watched Newhart (not {only} The Bob Newhart Show) and always wanted to see Stephanie Vanderkellen’s teets – here’s your chance. With all of that – sure enough, a murder happens because someone won’t have sex with someone else and then it gets ugly.

Here’s our teen couple (I don’t think that’s a coincidental eyeball placement):

The cop looking into the murders is a racist and a homophobe and it’s weird hearing people talk like that. It’s really ugly and extremely offensive and there’s a lot of it so if you’re thinking ‘oh, an old slasher I haven’t seen’ – there’s that.

Oh – and around that, the aunt, who *spoilers* is the kid’s mom, licks some milk off of his chest and neck at one point and, attempts to give him some mouth on mouth kissing and, at another point, while trying to kill him, screams “I’M YOUR GIRLFRIEND NOW!”

Around all of that shit, you’ll run across a pickled head, a hand getting chopped of with a machete, rotary phone dialing, some realistic high school basketball and Bill Paxton. And lots of men with full moustaches. I don’t know who played the aunt but she had (or has?) crazy down – what a way to get into her part. I just looked her up and it looks like she was in a lot of shit.


As a bonus feature for this movie, I’ve put together a fancy graphic for you to help you fit all of this together. Have fun!

2 thoughts on “butcher, baker, nightmare maker (1981)

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