Blood Hook (1986) Poster


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Silly, Horror Fun
BHorrorWriter13 September 2001
Okay if someone were to say this movie was "brilliant" or "exception", i would have to say they should get a CAT scan. This movie, however, if extremely silly, goofy and full of laughs. The dialog alone is enough to get people laughing.

Jim Mallon and Kevin Murphy of MST3K fame, worked on this movie.

The idea of a giant fishing-lure killer, using his victims as food for minnows is hilarious and off the wall.

Watch and love this b-movie gem

7 out of 10
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muskie madness baby!
AngryChair15 July 2005
The 80's were filled with tons of cheap, underground slashers following the craze of Friday the 13th and it's many "clones". But this fairly unknown low-budget movie may be the better of the "lost" slashers of the decade.

In sleepy Hayward, Wisconsin, folks are holding the annual Muskie Madness fishing tournament where it seems that someone is reeling in more than just fish off the lake. Someone with a big fishing hook is catching people!

Written and directed by Jim Mallon, best known for his work on the classic TV comedy Mystery Science Theater 3000, Blood Hook is a truly amusing little venture into the slasher conventions. You have all the elements - silly teens, rock music, bloody murders, backwoods weirdos - all used to put a tongue-in-cheek spin on the slasher genre.

The joy of this film is its nicely campy feel and it proves to be amusing because it doesn't take itself seriously. After all have you ever seen a killer thriller where the murderer literally fishes for his victims? This true low-budgeter gets by on it's dark humor, and it's a real effective style! Too bad it's an underground flick. At any rate, this quirky memorable little gem is well worth finding.

*** out of ****
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Musky Fishing at its best
Kevin VC28 March 2006
What better then a Movie involving a Musky fisherman going around killing This movie is a must see for any who fishes for Musky. Even some of the names in the movie will make some laugh. Finner, Fenner. The annoying family from Oak Park, Illinois is my favorite.... As old man Luedtke says, the lake isn't a playground. They even got the Giant Musky from the Freshwater hall of Fame in the movie... Definitely a must see for every Musky Fisherman out there. Besides the two guys from MST3000 did anyone else go on to anything else? Makes one want to go for a trip to Hayward and go fishing. I think they even cover most stereo types from the 80's.
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Probably one of the only Horror-Comedy combos, I have seen that works..
Warning: Spoilers
So we've had most possibilities by now, haven't we? We've had killer priests, clowns and soldiers. There have been maniac cops, medicine men and miners. Every single date on the holiday calendar has been well and truly terrorised and most possible massacre locations have been stalked. We've had a couple of baseball themed killers, a wrestlemaniac and even a psycho Greenskeeper. Are you really ready for a maniacal fisherman?

Released in 1986, Blood Hook manages to make the most of its low budget and pull itself away from the rabble to achieve something that was becoming almost impossible during the late eighties. It's a hard to come by genre entry that offers a slightly different pace and an alternative to the humdrum mediocrity that littered the category at this point in the cycle.

Wisconsin is preparing for its most important event in recent history. The annual fishing competition sees the town filled with tonnes of ambitious anglers from all over the country trying to get their hands on the $5000 prize for the biggest muskie. Unbeknownst to the revellers, they are about to participate in something far more interesting. Hunters will become hunted as an unseen maniac with an inconceivably strong spool of line is casting in to the lake for human trophies. In such a close knit community, who could be behind the fishy goings-on?

Blood hook is a movie that has sat on my shelf gathering dust since I picked it up in a bargain bucket in the mid-nineties. I was put off by the fact that it was a Troma release and that it had been billed as a horror comedy. Now we all know what a horrific combination that usually turns out to be. Luckily, Hook is nowhere near as bad as I'd expected and offers the right blend of the two opposing styles and doesn't only focus on cheap laughs. Director Mallon would find success later with his Mystery Science project and this is a healthy debut that proves that he has a dark sense of humour.

At first, Jim Mallon probably looked like the wrong choice for this splatter fest as he was always a much bigger fan of comedy than he was of horror. Even his first high-school feature - a parody of Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom, which aired on Public Access – was more in-line with the director's ambitions than Blood Hook would ever be. He turned out to be the right choice for this cheesball though as it's clear that he had researched the genre and enjoyed poking fun at its platitudes. His opus doesn't only mock the psycho slashers of the time but also has a pop at the eighties in general and some of the dialogue about rock music, crazy fashions and popular habits proves that by '86 the decade was already showing enough self-recognition for parody.

Thanks to some alluring characters and good feature pacing, the film never gets boring and there are enough red herrings to keep you guessing until the killer is revealed quite early in the runtime. Even though a set up involving a maniac catching unsuspecting victims with a treble hook sounds like it should be quite rightly awful, the director resists the temptation to fall in to the realms of stupidity and if you ignore the physical impossibilities, it's even quite creepy at times.

There are a few themes running through the movie, which if further developed could have added exciting depths. The most prominent of these involved the numerous war veterans scattered amongst the story who all seem to have been affected (some more seriously than others) by their tours of duty in different wartime periods. There's a point towards the revelation of the killer's identity where things head towards a Jacob's Ladder-like conspiracy, but they are never completely developed and they fall by the wayside in favour of cheesy thrills. It's almost like there was enough here to build a decent and intriguing slasher film (much like Delirium, which had a similar structure but failed with development), but the director's natural instinct led him more to towards the comedic slant. This is most evident in the final battle with the maniac (two anglers aiming rods at each other no less) and I love the classic line, "You wanna take him like he took the rest? You wanna take him with a treble hook at night, don't ya?" Paul Drake's campiness was brilliant throughout.

I wouldn't really say that Blood Hook was a gore film, but there are some interesting effects on display towards the conclusion. The corpses floating in the water were quite effective and a mix of efficient acting and good directing made the victims actually look like they were suffering during the murder sequences.

The performances are OK for this level, I quite liked the campiness of the actors and they all had moments to shine. Some of the cinematography from Marsha Kahm was lush and the movie's competently directed. There must've been a fairly decent budget for the filmmakers to work with and so I wonder why they accepted distribution by Troma? The film was initially titled Muskie Madness during production, which is perhaps a better suit than Blood Hook, but part of the agreement was the name change and I guess that they thought more of the Troma branding and global network.

Obviously a sense of humour is needed for this one. A killer with a rod and reel strong enough to catch screaming teens is nothing but tongue in cheek, but it's actually a quirky little slasher with something different to offer. You won't hate yourself after watching like I did with its cousin Blood Lake.

Just make sure that you have the right frame of mind!
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Terror for the fresh water fishermen.
Chuck Straub29 January 2005
"Blood Hook", Terror of the fresh water fishermen. It's a typical slasher movie of the 80s. A group of kids go somewhere. They meet an assortment of strange characters. One by one the characters get killed off in a bloody way. Bad acting, a poor plot, and ridiculous situations permeate this movie. All the usual stuff for a rip em up movie such as this. This blood and guts spilling movie takes place on a fresh water lake among a group of fishermen during a fishing tournament. That may be unique, I don't recall seeing a fisherman slasher movie before. Someone kills off people with a huge treble hooked lure. That's what makes this movie a little different. Fishermen might get a kick out of this one. This is something to watch with your fishing buddies after a day of fishing. Sometime when your not in the mood for a really serious movie anyway. Another thing different about this movie is that Jim Mallon directed it. This is the same Jim Mallon that directed Mystery Science Theater; a show that pokes fun at badly made movies. "Blood Hook" would be a prime candidate for that show. I saw "Blood Hook" on a DVD I rented called Troma Triple B-Header containing three movies, "Blood Hook", "Blades" and "Zombie Island Massacre". Low budget, low quality, simple stuff. I got what I expected and a few unexpected laughs to go along with it.
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musky Madness!
Bub_the_zombie27 May 2007
Giant Musky Bait = Murder Weapon = Cheesy Fun.

This is the cheesiest of all 80's slasher attempts. It's even cheesier than Slash Dance or Killer Workout.

I put off watching the flick for years. I guess there was a reason for that. When I finally popped the tape into my ancient vcr, I giggled under my breath, but couldn't bring myself to a full laugh.

The synth score is really catchy and adds an uneasiness throughout the film, even tho you know there's absolutely nothing eerie about it.

Only die hard cheese fans will find something enjoyable about someone casting a large musky bait onto someone until they die. Very sappy.

Is it worth a watch? Hell yeah. Grab a beer, kick back, and prepare to see something like you've never before seen.
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Surprisingly Watchable
Warning: Spoilers
Let's start with a caveat: I have never been a big fan of Troma, something that surprises people who know my interest in cult horror. TOXIC AVENGER is a classic and I will always have a soft spot for STREET TRASH if only because I asked Ralph Bakshi if he had any thoughts on it's making during a visiting lecturer symposium, having thoroughly confused it with STREET FIGHT. But Troma is guilty of having made the same mistake that the Austin Powers movies made, which is that the idea of parodying the horror genre is redundant since horror movies are inherently preposterous in the first place.

Likewise, folks always look at me in a dumbfounded manner when I confess that I have never sat through an entire showing of "Mystery Science Theatre 3000", ever. I've never been a big cable TV watcher and if I do decide to tune in for anything it usually involves nudity or sex. Why else would one bother with it? If I want to watch some really bad movie and hear a couple of yokels make wise cracks about it I could just have the guys over for a few beers. It's a great idea for a show, but life is short.

So right off the top we jettison the two main draws to this video (Troma, MST3K) and by golly if it doesn't still work. I remember when Muskie Madness was all the rage in the mid 1980's but do not remember this film. The box art on the old rental tape I nabbed was what sold it to me. The lurid thrills promised by that image are not to be found on the tape, but what IS there is a remarkable bit of satire crossed with a Summer Camp Horror idea about city types going to an Adirondack resort that is hosting a Muskie contest. A serial killer is at work, thinning down the ranks of the contestants & local denizens by means of a giant fishing lure. He stalks the lake in his rowboat picking people off, reeling them in and stringing their bodies together like a rope of fish, keeping them under his dock until he can grind them down into mush that he feeds to his bait shop minnows.

The most evocative image in the film is the human corpses strung through the mouth like a string of lake trout, but the real reason why the film works is that the writers & actors produced a very convincing if somewhat cartoonish community of characters that works in the same way that an episode of The Simpson's works. If we didn't believe in the characters the show would just be a bunch of one-liners, and the same idea is going on here. There are very human traits at work, and the traditional barrage of Troma schlepp is avoided in favor of a sense of personal identification. The movie isn't laughing at the backwoods upstate dorks, but rather having fun with their whole culture of bait shops, contest legends, personal grudges, local dialect and community power structure. One of the rival fishermen delivers a monologue on fishing for Muskie that is actually on the same par with Joe Pesci from JFK, making us understand how someone could kill to be regarded as the best Muskie fisherman in the whole state.

And if it sounds like I am responding too cerebrally to this movie, relax: I also love this movie because of Sandy Meuwissen's "Bev D.", a spunky, short haired mid 80's exercise nut with a body on her that God crafted with his two hands. She is sexy beyond belief, and even uses one of the downstate knuckleheads for empty sex that is sadly staged offscreen. That this is the only movie she made is extremely mysterious: I'd love to see more of her. A lot more, actually, and it's nice to see that someone at Troma had the good sense to back this movie & include her in it, since she is about as close as I'll be coming to a summer crush this year.

7/10, and yes, it really is that good.
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A Lost Gem From The 80s, or something like that.
Kris Langley26 October 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Classic. Seriously. This movie is going to be remembered by anyone who sees it.

I'm not saying it's GOOD, because it isn't. The first time I saw this movie, it was at a party where people would show up to make fun of bad movies--almost like MST3K without the segues. That was twelve years ago.

If it isn't a classic, why do I remember most of the lines? Why do I know the tune the Red Echoes sing? Why do I know the significance of turning down your radio (referred to as "the G**D*** headache machine")? Why do I know how deadly a treble hook can be? And why would I go looking at Bass Pro Shop for a treble hook? Go rent this movie if you can find it. Hell, BUY it. Just try and see it without forgetting what you just watched.
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Good Stuff
drhackenstine27 November 2005
Warning: Spoilers
The guys who did Mystery Science Theater did this one. Looks like a movie that they would have ripped into. This is a good slasher film. It differs from the basic slasher flick, since the whole thing is about a fishing tournament, and the killer picks off victims using a fishing rod, with a giant treble lure. The atmosphere is top-notch, the characters descent, and the story unfolds nicely. There is a certain cheese factor involved in the story telling, but it doesn't make the story dumb or too goofy. Some nice splashes of blood, a good body count, and a tight pace make this a good find. Worth seeking out. Three Stars.
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