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2.3 out of 5 stars
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2.3 out of 5 stars
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on 11 July 2013
Everyone looked so familiar in this. If you are an avid horror movie fan you should feel at home watching this one. It is a Chainsaw Massacre rip off, better done than most. Te film takes place in 1969 as the proverbial young adults wind up in rural America.

The Staunton family was portrayed great. Kathy Lamkin as the head of the clan was superb. The 6 college kids left much to be desired. It wasn't that their acting was bad, it was just that the writer forgot to give them interesting character.

I guess the wheel chair guy had already been done. If you like watching bloody women getting tied down and having their clothes removed to their undergarments, this one delivers.
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Format: DVD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I am always sceptical when movies announce on the packaging things like "The scariest movie you've ever seen"....blah, blah. Unfortunately the past few years of US horror movies have been dire, they should really look at the Japanese horror movies properly. Anyway, I won't start ranting at bad US horror movies.

The most interesting point to note is....you guessed it....the movie was directed by a relation of George Romero and yep, he has obviously relied on that fact to automatically think he's a horror God, but he isn't, far from it.

45 minutes into the film you are still wondering what exactly is going on, typical scenario of a group of young people in a slightly unnerving location. Flashback images of something entirely unrelated and fluctuating speech volume make it hard to keep track of. To give credit, some of the usual cliche's don't occur such as the falling over when being chased. However, it has a strong taste of a poor rendition of Texas Chainsaw Massacre. 50 minutes in and there are some gory scenes and this must be where the main proportion of the budget was spent and as quick as that, it's back to being slightly bored.

Perhaps if you bought the film based on the name and the clever box design then you would be more disappointed. I wasn't bought by any of that possibly because of the large number of bad US horrors that get made, so the movie gets a 3 stars from me although would be more accurate as 2.5.
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on 1 October 2009
Format: DVD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This film is lazy, clichéd and dull. All of the characters do totally stupid things e.g. walking into a seemingly abandoned room and finding it full of surgical implements, blood spattered on the wall yet still deciding to wander in further to have a look!

The plot is basically - bunch of young adults get a ride from a stranger. Car breaks down, young adults seek refuge in weird old farmhouse. Farmhouse has nutters living in it who act odd and have a son who is like leatherface but without a mask. The nutter family gradually kill the young adults. That's it.

It's almost exactly like The Texas Chainsaw Massacre but much more tedious and drawn out. Most of the situations are practically sign-posted so anyone who has watched even just a few horror movies will be able to guess what happens next (with perhaps one exception).

What's really embarrassing is that the cover of the DVD I reviewed has a quote from original Dawn of the Dead director George A. Romero that says "This is as scary as it gets" - who directed this film? - Cameron Romero! George A. Romero's son!
Not only does having a quote from your own father on your movie completely render the quote as being utterly biased, but for George A. Romero to link his name to something so utterly rubbish should bring a tear to the eye of anyone who has enjoyed the original Night of the Living Dead and Dawn of the Dead.

That this film was made over 2 years before getting released straight to DVD says a lot. I say don't waste your time watching it.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 22 September 2009
Format: DVD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I can't disagree with any of the other reviews here to date, this film is very derivative so it largely depends to what degree this level of unoriginality irriates/bores the viewer. I personally have got a soft spot for psychopathic inbred hillbillies so tend to just like them regardless as long as they are competently handled.
Making his directoral debut, Cameron Romero (son of George.A) has done quite a good job; this has the feel of a newcomer cutting his teeth within the horror genre it has a raw feel to it, some bits are done very well and other parts don't quite come off.
A group of hikers (certainly not teens but I don't think the film infers that) off on a weekend jaunt get waylaid by a friendly stranger then ultimately come a cropper 'down on the farm'
The best parts of the film for me were when the slayings, dissections, dismemberments etc commenced, not because I am a 'gorehound' but because the director was clearly more in his own comfort zone and these scenes were very adept and handled with aplomb. The jury was out on certain aspects of his directorial style regarding his use of flashbacks and juxtaposition of imagery; I felt it neither added nor detracted from the story.
I thought the acting was largely good but never feel that qualified in evaluating an actors ability (I thought Danny Dyers role in the awful 'Straightheads' was good against near universal derision)I wasn't that convinced by the wheelchair bound grandma but the other matriarch of the film, the obese Kathy Lamkin, was very suited in that understated menacing 'hick' way as she was in her various Texas Chainsaw outings (modern versions) Buddy, for all intents and purposes the 'Leatherface' of this film was well cast also and I note he was also one of the Associate Producers of Staunton Hill. I felt a lot of empathy for the victims in this, somewhat tempered by the admission that I found the blonde lead to be staggeringly attractive and was rooting for her throughout.
I quite liked it, it's not the best horror you'll ever see or even the best example of its type but within the context of a directorial debut I would hope that the director has honed his skills with this one and will build upon it for his, hopefully, next horror.
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on 29 March 2013
Here's a run-down of dear old 'Staunton Hill'.

- Teens get lost - Tick
- Run down petrol station/convinience store - Tick
- Petrol station attendant chews tobacco - Tick
- Petrol station attendant is racist - Tick
- Black character rises above it though - Tick
- Friendly chap offers a lift in his conviniently massive truck - Tick

- You won't believe it but the truck breaks down (clever huh?) - Tick
- The characters argue a bit before rendering the truck beyond repair - Tick
- Luckily there is a farm house nearby though - Tick
- A storm rolls in despite it being sunny all day (when it rains it bloomin' pours doesn't it?) - Tick
- Nobody is home - Tick
- Teens think its a good idea to simply sleep in the stables (a bit like that day I got home and someone was camping in the front garden - you carry on!) - Tick

- There was a family at home after all (maybe the crackled radio was on too loud) - Tick...no, double Tick
- Family consists of a wheel chair bound old lady, an overweight younger lady and a young man called 'Buddy'- Tick
- They are religious - Tick
- 'Buddy' has more than a few issues...he likes toy dolls, ladies underwear and dismembering people - Tick
- The aforementioned 'friendly chap' foolishly calls Buddy a 'retard' which sours the mood - Tick

- 'Buddy' soon begins to kill them all off - Tick
- Underneath it all 'Buddy' is the victim though people (deep I know) - Tick

.....and the biggest one of all....wait for it....that chirpy local chap who was meant to be helping out? Well he was in on it all along, as was the petrol station bloke......you son of a b**ch!

So if you've been in space for the last 30 years or maybe have just awoken from an amazing, three decade lie-in you're gonna absolutely love 'Staunton Hill'.

Here's hoping there's someone, somewhere who fits the bill.
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VINE VOICEon 25 September 2009
Format: DVD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I was expecting something a bit like the movie "Wrong Turn" when I read the summary for the movie, but what I got was closer to "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre" in basic plot, but without the cannibalism.

It was a pretty formulaic horror movie, and although it was set in 1969, it had a very modern feel about it. Some of the dialogue was peppered with reference to the freedom marches and other things that were going on in the late sixties, but the script was mostly run of the mill.

The deaths were gruesome and I must say realistically done. If you are a gore fan you will love this. I know it had me screwing up my face a few times lol.

There were strange flashbacks running through parts of the movie of an operation on a young girl, which made more sense by the end. I had my suspicions about one of the characters early on in the movie so the ending came as no surprise to me.

The gore gets a 5/5 from me, it was horrifically and well done. The actors were just there to be the grist for the mill as none of them seemed to have any special acting talents, except how to die.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 28 September 2009
Format: DVD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
It starts off relatively promising - the aesthetics of the movie are very well done, and certainly there's a measurable sense of menace as the protaganists find themselves alone in the farm where the main bulk of the action takes place. Sadly, that's where the promise ends. It's a rambling, incoherent take on standard shock horror principles, with no new ideas or interesting diversions from the standard formula.

The characters are one dimensional, which is especially jarring because so much effort is made to make them more so... it just falls horribly flat. 'This is the angry young back man', 'this is the nuanced modern woman', and so on. The characters don't emerge naturally, they arrive with their own little character histories pinned on their heads for all to see.

It's not scary, either. There are a couple of scenes that are relatively unsettling, but on the whole it fails to chill, or thrill. I'd recommend avoiding it, even if you are a fan of the genre. You're only going to be disappointed.
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on 20 June 2013
I am always a little wary of films marketed as by "the son of..." which almost implies it's only been made because their dad was a legend.

This film though, was excellent. Many horror films spend the first half of the film establishing the characters but in these films, the characters are such a bunch of drinking, drug taking, sexually promiscuous and obnoxious people I get bored waiting for some maniac to start bumping them off.

The characters here were nice, decent, likeable characters. I actually wanted to get to know them, and as a result when they met their grisly ends, their deaths were far more distressing to watch than is usually the case with entries in the genre.

The gore effects were exceptionally good, and the characters felt very real and well drawn out. Perhaps it was a little uneven in tone but I found very little to dislike. I look forward to Cameron Romero's next one -- I'm sure he will make one. Be warned though -- it's not an easy ride.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 5 October 2009
We did not enjoy this film at all. I suppose enjoyment is not necessarily something you would look for in what is basically another "video-nasty" style film of the Hostel and hills-have-eyes genres. It was rather nastier than I expected but, the ideas in the plot were slightly original in the way they developed, but I think the poor execution meant it seemed also quite predictable with the "big reveal" being rather obvious by the time it comes round
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HALL OF FAMEon 23 September 2009
Format: DVD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Staunton Hill certainly looks the part, from the cover art, and George Romero's quote 'This is as scary as it gets', to the great locations. unfortunately it is a poorly cobbled together rehash of a hundred other slasher movies which completely fails to make it mark.
The poor production values are glaring throughout, there is no consistency in the scenes whether from poor lighting or camera work, resulting in a completely different look while switching from characters in the same scene, almost as if switching from clean modern look to grainy old film, it all looks very amateur. the sound is also appalling, occasionally just picking up indistinct mumbles from the characters, this would not be such a burden except the first 45 minutes of the movie in which nothing happens relies entirely on the barely audible dialog.
Some of the acting is passable, and a couple of the actors despite such awful material do shine, otherwise this would be a well deserved one star review.
The movie plot seems to be very much based on the look and feel of the original Texas chain-saw massacre, but lacking in any of the tension and horror, with a few elements of Touristas and other movies thrown in for good measure.
A very amateur effort, poorly directed, which meanders into ineffectual horror at such a late point in the movie you cant help but wish it all over sooner.
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