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By James Whittington, Sunday 26th January 2020 Edge of the Axe Arrow Video Certificate 18
I must admit, Edge of the Axe is one of those late 80s slashers that passed me by when it was originally released. Maybe because I was tired of the genre by then, maybe because the concept of it being a Euro/American horror just didn't appeal to me, or just maybe there was something better to rent out that week! Anyway, this cut on its original release in 1989 due to the amount of axe on show but thanks to Arrow video we can now view uncut with all chopper moments intact!
The rural community of Paddock County is being rocked by the crazed exploits of an axe-wielding psychopath, who stalks the night in a black trenchcoat and mask. As the victims pile up, the authorities attempt to keep a lid on the situation, whilst computer whizz-kid Gerald and girlfriend Lillian seek to unmask the killer before the town population reaches zero.
Pedestrian in pace but with acting way above the usual for such a movie, Edge of the Axe is a hack n' slash movie that brings nothing new to the genre but when it gets going is fun. The set-pieces are well sign posted but well executed (ha ha, get it?) with the effects standing up more than I was expecting. The lead characters are your usual horny teens and the killer never breaks into a run when stalking.
The electronic score sounds at time as if someone was bashing two metal bin lids together and dates the film, saying that there are some wild country tracks to get your foot tappin'. Oh, and there's some wonderfully cheesy sax music for all you romantics out there!
Barton Faulks stars as computer nerd Gerald, a mysterious young man who gets with a stare to as weird as his clothing choice with Christina Marie Lane as Lillian, Gerald's on/off girlfriend who seems as troubled as he is. Both didn't have very long movie careers. As the movie plods along more and more red herrings are introduced, each one with a not so subtle evil glint in their eye.
The axe sequences are very well staged being more violent and bloody than I was expecting but there are few shocks here to get your pulse racing.
There are extras on the full release but not available to review.
Edge of the Axe is enjoyable horror hokum, not the best slasher in the world but not the worst by any measure.
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