79 user 33 critic

The Mangler (1995)

1:10 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $9.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

A laundry-folding machine has been possessed by a demon from Hell, causing it to develop homicidal tendencies.



(short story), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
1 win. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

In a very old textile mill, with a serious rat infestation, the workers discover a horrifying secret deep in the basement.

Director: Ralph S. Singleton
Stars: David Andrews, Kelly Wolf, Stephen Macht
Sometimes They Come Back (TV Movie 1991)
Drama | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Based on a short story by Stephen King, a man and his family return to his home town, but he is then harassed by teenagers that died when he was a kid.

Director: Tom McLoughlin
Stars: Tim Matheson, Brooke Adams, Robert Rusler
Mortuary I (2005)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.9/10 X  

A family moves to a small town in California where they plan on starting a new life while running a long-abandoned funeral home. The locals fear the place, which is suspected to be on haunted ground.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Dan Byrd, Denise Crosby, Stephanie Patton
The Dark Half (1993)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A writer's fictional alter-ego wants to take over his life...at any price.

Director: George A. Romero
Stars: Timothy Hutton, Amy Madigan, Michael Rooker
Fantasy | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A reporter is on the trail of a vampiric murderer who travels by plane.

Director: Mark Pavia
Stars: Miguel Ferrer, Julie Entwisle, Dan Monahan
Night Terrors (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.2/10 X  

A young girl travels to Cairo to visit her father, and becomes unwillingly involved with a bizarre sadomasochistic cult led by the charismatic Paul Chevalier, who is a descendant of the ... See full summary »

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Robert Englund, Zoe Trilling, Alona Kimhi
Sleepwalkers (1992)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  

A mother-and-son team of strange supernatural creatures move to a small town to seek out a young virgin to feed on.

Director: Mick Garris
Stars: Brian Krause, Mädchen Amick, Alice Krige
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

A historic Hollywood hotel houses a supernatural evil. It's been subdued for decades, but when renovations start, a series of murders take place.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Angela Bettis, Brent Roam, Marco Rodríguez
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Claire Craft, Helen Leary, Theo Morrison
Eaten Alive (1976)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

A psychotic redneck who owns a dilapidated hotel in rural East Texas kills various people who upset him or his business, and he feeds their bodies to a large crocodile that he keeps as a pet in the swamp beside his hotel.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Neville Brand, Mel Ferrer, Carolyn Jones
Crime | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A mysterious new shop opens in a small town which always seems to stock the deepest desires of each shopper, with a price far heavier than expected.

Director: Fraser C. Heston
Stars: Max von Sydow, Ed Harris, Bonnie Bedelia
The Funhouse (1981)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Four teenage friends spend the night in a carnival funhouse and are stalked by a deformed man in a Frankenstein mask.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Elizabeth Berridge, Shawn Carson, Jeanne Austin


Cast overview, first billed only:
Daniel Matmor ...
J.J.J. Pictureman / Mortician
Vanessa Pike ...
Demetre Phillips ...
Lisa Morris ...
Lin Sue
Vera Blacker ...
Mrs. Adelle Frawley
Ashley Hayden ...
Danny Keogh ...
Herb Diment
Ted Le Plat ...
Doctor Ramos
Roger Martin
Derrick Gates
Gerrit Schoonhoven ...
Aaron Rodriguez
Nan Hamilton ...
Mrs. Ellenshaw


When an accident involving a folding machine at an old laundry occurs, detective John Hunton decides to investigate. What he finds is the owner of the laundry, Bill Gartley. Meanwhile the folding machine has acquired a taste for the flesh of human beings, but is there more to Bill Gartley than meets the eye, and does he know what monster hides behind the machine? Written by Action Dan <actiondan@talk21.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


There is a fate worse than death See more »


Horror | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for gory horror violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| | |


Release Date:

3 March 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Alianza macabra  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$1,781,383 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Tobe Hooper filmed a large chunk of the film but left and was replaced by Anant Singh. See more »


[first lines]
George Stanner: What are you doing? Not up here. Get back down there. Jesus. Morons.
See more »


Referenced in Scream: The Inside Story (2011) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A Humorous-Allegory of the Evils of Capitalism
13 April 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"And did the Countenance Divine Shine forth upon our clouded hills? And was Jerusalem builded here Among these dark Satanic mills? "

William Blake, "Jerusalem", 1795

"We all have to make sacrifices!" --from the Mangler-screenplay, 1995

Coming from Stephen King's 1978 collection of shorts, "Night Shift", Tobe Hooper brings us his very different-take: a parable of 19th Century, proprietary-capitalism and the nightmare of the American-workplace. This film is what labor-conditions were 100-years-ago, and what they could easily become again if we aren't too-careful. Since the discovery of a slave-sweatshop in El Monte, California a few-years after the release of this film, it isn't so fantastic. Maybe some of us were too-comfortable to "get" this film in the Clinton-era. Most people don't get this film at-all, even just watching it on its surface-levels. It's a real hoot! Yep, you can watch it with a beer, and you can watch it with an open-mind thinking about its deeper-meanings, or you can do both. And--shocker!--ALL of them are FUN.

Tobe Hooper has said for-decades he wanted to do comedy, and he comes close here, which helps this film from being too-oppressive. Ithink Hooper understood the story better than Stephen King--it seems King worked in a clothes-pressing plant like this one in the 1960s, which gave-rise to it, but Hooper has always struck me as politically-radical in his approach-to-horror. The best horror usually has a real subversive-edge, and this is what makes this a good one. Sure, it's hokey, but it has its tongue firmly-planted in its cheek, it is jokey. It also has some sub-themes in the lines, "There's a piece of me in that machine--and a piece of it in me." It speaks well of how people are spiritually-contaminated by our system. The disease is greed.

If it wasn't for Ted Levine ("Buffalo Bill" in Silence of the Lambs) as the bedraggled town-cop John Hunton, Robert Englund would literally steal-the-show here. Tobe uses some great low-shots and wide-angle lens compositions (ala "Citizen Kane") that lend the film a great comic-book look, and make Englund shine as a despicable-villain. The irony is, mill-owner Gartley is also a victim of the machine, even robbing him of the ability to walk. He's also half-blind, which makes-sense. The characters are pretty well-drawn, and we learn that Detective Hunton has some baggage left-behind from the death of his wife in a car-accident, years-earlier. The town is run like a virtual-dictatorship by Gartley, who basically represents the "robber-barons" of the 19th century (as well as today), completely-uncaring about the safety and welfare of his employees. A man who has lost his humanity. Sound familiar?

Eventually, an accident occurs where the niece of Englund's character spills her own blood on the "Mangler", a clothes-press that must be 100-years-old. Another shop-employee spills her belladonna-laced antacids into the guts of the machine, and it begins taking-victims...and parts. Oddly, all the people Bill Gartley "owns" (the Mayor, the Police Chief, Doctors, etc.) have missing-fingers. Of course, the premise of a demoniacally-possessed machine is fantasy, which is what makes the story a parable, but it's fun. Over-time, Detective Hunton finds that the Gartley dynasty has been-sacrificing their own young to the infernal-machine for a century, and now they're "spreading-the-love". Don't all employers? Some require the blood of a virgin!

So, people have been wrong about this one. It's a minor-classic of a bad-decade for horror. The genre has its fallow-periods where interest isn't as-high, and 1995 wasn't exactly a banner-year for horror-buffs. And quit-comparing every film a director does to their most well-known ones, it's emotionally-retarded. This is a solid horror-film, and if it had been presented in the proper-context, would have been better-appreciated. The short-story is good, but this is better, and Stephen King sure isn't Edgar Allan Poe or Lovecraft ferchrissakes. The New Line DVD is great, it has a perfect widescreen-transfer, and even includes the gore that was cut with split-screen comparisons to the theatrical-version. A great horror-film, and a respectable one for Tobe Hooper. Now you can all go and rewatch the original "Texas Chainsaw Massacre"--just don't touch-yourself so-much this time. We all have to make sacrifices, after-all. Ignore the other reviews, those people are snobs.

23 of 29 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
the greatest movie of all time?? toddthebod
Does this film warrant a 1/10 from 27% of people? Discuss... ghiaguy1974
what a horrible movie aslauenwhite
to anyone who has the dvd iheartkyle1218
What is with the pills? flairfan4
Similarities between The Mangler and Graveyard shift kobejonez
Discuss The Mangler (1995) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: