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Three on a Meathook (1973)

R | | Horror | 1973 (USA)
Four girls go on a romping weekend at a lake, and have car problems on the way home. A nice local boy takes them back to his farm, where he lives with his father. Something ghastly happens,... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Charles Kissinger ...
Pa Townsend
James Carroll Pickett ...
Billy Townsend (as James Pickett)
Sherry Steiner ...
Sherry
Madelyn Buzzard ...
Becky
John Shaw
Marsha Tarbis
Carolyn Thompson
Kiersten Laine
...
Debbie
Hugh Smith
Thomas Todd
Smith Haynie ...
Young Billy
Alice Summers
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Storyline

Four girls go on a romping weekend at a lake, and have car problems on the way home. A nice local boy takes them back to his farm, where he lives with his father. Something ghastly happens, but the father helps his son as he has in the past. When the boy meets a girl and begins falling in love, the father worries about a repeat performance. Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

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A Padlocked Shed, Hooks of Cold Steel -- a Maniac on the loose See more »

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Horror

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R | See all certifications »
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1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

3 on a Meathook!  »

Box Office

Budget:

$20,000 (estimated)
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to director William Girdler, the truck Billy drives in the film wasn't working on the night when the scene where Billy picks up the four girls was shot, so crew members had to push the truck into the shot to make it appear that it 'drove' up. This is also the reason why we don't hear the motor running during this scene. See more »

Crazy Credits

The motion picture you have just seen is completely fiction. Any resemblance to a place or person, whether living or dead, is purely coincidental. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Get-Man (1974) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Fiendish grindhouse nastiness!
18 September 2006 | by (Beverley Hills, England) – See all my reviews

As the title suggests, Three on a Meathook is a grainy and grisly slice of seventies American horror, although it offers slightly more than similar genre films. The film is apparently based on the classic and influential story of Ed Gein, although aside from the rustic setting, mother themes and the fact that people die; this one strays a lot from the story, and actually takes more influence from Gein-inspired classics such as Psycho. It's obvious that the film was shot on a very low budget, as it doesn't feel completely finished, and that along with the bare locations, bad acting and short running time ensure the budget limitations shine through. The plot revolves around a father and son that live on a farm. The film opens with four girls breaking down while on a camping trip, and after taking up the son's nice offer of a bed at his farmhouse, they decide to stay there. However, they all wind up dead and the son is dismayed when he finds out that he is the killer! His father helps him clean up the mess, but when he brings another girl home; it looks as though history is going to repeat itself.

As you might expect, there's a fair amount of gore here - although perhaps not as much as in other similar films. Still, what there is in terms of gore is well done, and Three on a Meathook features some excellent kill scenes, most of which are misogynistic. The film constantly hints at a twisted ending, and indeed the mystery behind the murderer is so obvious that I'm convinced the audience is supposed to guess that straight away - but luckily, William Girdler's film has more in reserve, and the twist that comes at the conclusion is a definite surprise...although it does hint at how much more shocking the film could have been if it had been incorporated properly into the story rather than just being rolled out at the end. The acting is nothing special, although the director obviously rates his lead stars James Pickett and Charles Kissenger as they both went on to star in two more of his films, The Zebra Killer and Asylum of Satan, both of which may be worth tracking down. The climax to the film is an obvious nod to Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho, and overall; while this is not exactly great cinema, grindhouse fans will definitely find a lot to like.


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