An aspiring wrestler gets pushed to the limit and goes on a killing spree in this indie horror film featuring many legends and superstars in the ring.
Randy Sanchez is a groundskeeper who dreams to follow in his father’s footsteps and become a professional wrestler. Once a great employee, he’s been slacking off lately due to his aspirations and a bit of a crush on one of his clients, Becky. Becky’s boyfriend Owen has issues with gambling and owes $15,000 to Becky’s brother, friend, and loan sharks. When Randy attempts to talk to Becky about his dreams, Owen sees it as flirting with her and tells Randy his services are no longer needed for now.
When Randy gets the chance to try out at a local wrestling school, he is ridiculed by the school’s owner and is laughed out of the ring. He ends up losing his job as a result of the tryout. When he attempts to talk to his father, his father ridicules him as well. This pushes Randy to a breaking point like no tomorrow. Randy strangles his own father and sporting his old wrestling gear, goes on a wild killing spree against anyone who gets in his way. Meanwhile, Owen and Becky find themselves captured by the loan sharks. What will happen when Randy shows up at the house as well?
Professional wrestling and horror can make for quite an interesting combination. We’ve been treated to El Mascarado Massacre aka WrestleManiac in 2006 and there have been films like River of Darkness and Monster Brawl, which meshed the sport and film genre as well. This year, we were treated to the psychological horror film Powerbomb and now, we have this film, which originally debuted in the festival circuit last year, but is finally getting a wide DVD and On Demand release. While the film may not have the best acting, it does rely on meshing pro wrestling choreography with amazing practical FX with a story of a man’s obsession with both his love of the sport and a young woman who has quite a jerk boyfriend with an addiction.
The film has a cast of pro wrestlers and legends, led by Richie “The Cuban Assassin” Acevedo, who for the first half of the film, plays a likable character in Randy. However, while he has this obsession with wrestling and has a thing for Becky, played by Rosanna Nelson, Randy is seen as someone who is shy, yes a bit disturbed, but seems as someone who just wants to live a dream. However, as he is the target of relentless ridicule and bullying, of course, there will be that pent up frustration and it is when his father tells him what a disgrace he was, that’s the scene where Randy transforms into the killing beast. He even goes as far as going full-on Texas Chainsaw Massacre to design a title belt on the faces of his victims to boot! Kudos goes to Marcus Koch for creating this very delectable belt.
To keep the film going, there is a major subplot involving Becky and her tumultuous relationship with Owen, played by Julio Fernandez. With Owen owing a massive debt to loan sharks, he finds himself threatened on every level and it seems he tends to take out his anger on Randy as a means for him to not be a “third wheel” while Rene Dupree, the former WWE superstar of La Resistance, plays Becky’s PTSD-stricken brother, who will do anything to protect his sister, even if his motives are sometimes questioned.
There are appearances by many legends and wrestlers. In his final film performance before his passing, Nikolai Volkoff plays Randy’s father, who becomes the catalyst for Randy’s ultimate killing spree. Jim Fullington, best known to ECW circles as The Sandman, plays the character of Kendo while Tony Atlas plays Hercules, one of the loan sharks’ heavies. These and other appearances from wrestlers allow Acevedo, who also serves as the film’s stunt coordinator, to execute wrestling moves and mesh it with the horror elements that the film is meant to attract and boy do they do a good job here.
The SFX team, which include editor-director Brad Twigg himself, do an amazing job with using practical FX with a nice little montage of Randy’s killing spree after he kills some of those who bullied him before. It gets to a point where he will kill anyone in his sight for a good five minutes, meshing wrestling with the gore. There is even a nice little homage to a kill scene from one of the greatest horror films of the new millennium, a little film called Hatchet. Toshiyuki Hiroaki’s score even helps drive the film,as seen in one particular confrontation. Here, we hearg a Jon McCallum-esque influence as it felt like Hiroaki wanted to use the synth-score to give the film a Troma-like quality.
WrestleMassacre may not have the best in terms of acting, as with most indie horror films, but man seeing wrestling mixed with practical FX gore makes this one to check out for the fans!
WFG RATING: A-
Wild Eye Releasing presents a Fuzzy Monkey Films production. Director: Brad Twigg. Producers: Brad Twigg, Richie Acevedo, and Julio Fernandez. Writers: Matthew L. Furman and Brad Twigg. Cinematography: Juan Sanchez. Editing: Brad Twigg.
Cast: Richie Acevedo, Rosanna Nelson, Julio Fernandez, Rene Dupree, Brandy Mason, Nicholas Yoder II, Jimmy Flame, Tony Atlas, Nikolai Volkoff, Jimmy Valiant, Jim Fullington, Luba Hansen.
The film will be released on DVD and VOD on June 16, 2020.