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Toolbox Murders (2004)

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

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Luis Saucedo (as Marco Rodriguez)
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Christopher Doyle ...
Coffin Baby (as Chris Doyle)
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Stephanie Silverman ...
Alan Polonsky ...
Philip Sterling (as Allan Polonsky)
Charlie Paulson ...
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Storyline

In Hollywood, the young teacher Nell and her husband, the resident Steven Barrows, move to an old building called Lusman Arms. Some sixty years ago, the place was glamorous, but presently is completely decadent. Many dwellers have disappeared along the years. While her husband is working in the hospital, the lonely Nell hears some weird noises and becomes afraid of the place. While jogging, she is introduced to (and becomes close to) her neighbor Julia Cunningham, and they schedule a hike together on the next day. Julia never shows up, and Nell looks for her in the building, finding a hiding block behind the wall, where an evil being, which was born from death, lives with many dead bodies. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

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Every year, thousands of people come to Los Angeles to pursue their dreams. Some succeed. Some go home. And some just disapear. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence and gore, language, some sexuality and brief drug use | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

9 September 2004 (Israel)  »

Also Known As:

The Toolbox Murders  »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of the production companies financing the film dissolved during filming, forcing Tobe Hooper to shut down production with only 2/3 of the movie actually shot. Numerous continuity errors, plot holes, and narrative flaws are the result of Hooper hastily editing together what he had filmed into a complete movie in order to try and recoup financial losses and so that the actors' and crews' work wouldn't go to waste. In the commentary track for this film with Tobe Hooper and the writers, they state that this did not happen. See more »

Goofs

A box of detergent appears and disappears from a washing machine between shots. See more »

Quotes

Chas Rooker: It's not about what can get in; it's about what's already here.
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Crazy Credits

Every years thousands of people come to Hollywood to pursue their dreams. Some succeed. Some move back home... And some just disappear. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Video Nasties: Moral Panic, Censorship & Videotape (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

California (Back To Hell)
by Shithead
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User Reviews

Tobe Hooper is Back, Baby!
2 November 2004 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

After a fifteen year long string of awful horror movies and forgettable TV shows, director Tobe Hooper finally roars back to life with this fun, scary and intense horror thriller.

When I first heard Hooper was remaking TOOLBOX MURDERS, I thought he had hit a new low. The director of THE Texas CHAINSAW MASSACRE is making a remake of a movie that was in many ways a rip-off of CHAINSAW? I didn't think I'd bother.

Then I started hearing some internet buzz that the movie was actually pretty good, so I picked up the DVD at a horror convention. I was pleasantly surprised. It's a throwback to Hooper's earlier movies like CHAINSAW, EATEN ALIVE and THE FUNHOUSE, with a similar atmosphere of dementia and claustrophobic terror. The performances are excellent and the screenplay is very good (written by the same team that wrote Hooper's previous film, CROCODILE). Also top notch are the expressionistic cinematography and editing.

Hooper's previous movies reeked of TV movie blandness (possibly due to his having slowly moved into that realm over the years), but TOOLBOX MURDERS has a healthy dose of grindhouse grit to go with the slick, professional quality of his hired hand work. The result is a movie that is as technically well-made as SCREAM or WRONG TURN, but with the guts of a 70s drive-in shocker.

While the killer finds some creative ways to kill people with various hardware items, and the action takes place in a single apartment building, this movie has little to do with the original TOOLBOX MURDERS. It's actually more similar in plot to Lucio Fulci's HOUSE BY THE Cemetery. However, despite its remake status and its borrowing plot points from a few previous movies, it has a surprisingly fresh and original feeling to it.

I'll go out on a limb and say Tobe Hooper's TOOLBOX MURDERS is one of the better horror movies I've seen in quite some time. It leaves the CHAINSAW remake in the dust. It's better than most so-called horror movies I've seen in the last few years.

I highly recommend this to horror fans, but especially to admirers of Hooper who thought he would never crawl out of his rut. Well, he's back, and with a vengeance!


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