Tools & Terror

October 28, 2016

Greatest power tool deaths in horror movies

Tradies know the value of a good tool. Home maintenance, craft projects, DIY, murder, trade careers… it’s amazing what you can do with a well-stocked tool shed!

Halloween is here, so we decided to delve through the blood and gore to find some of the most gruesome power tool deaths in horror films. (Look out — there may be spoilers ahead.)

Chainsaw — The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, 1974

Taking it back to where it all started — The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is often thought of as the origin of several slasher movie tropes, including the use of power tools as weapons. Armed with a Poulan 306a chainsaw, Leatherface slices, dices, and hacks his way through his victims (before himself being hit in the face with a wrench).

Lawnmower — Braindead, 1992

Braindead (or Dead Alive) is sometimes referred to as the goriest ‘splatter film’ of all time. And when you use a lawnmower as your weapon of choice, it’s no wonder. When faced with a horde of raging zombies, hero Lionel cuts through to safety with a walk-behind mower in his hands. Approximately 300 liters of fake blood were used in the scene.

Garden Claw — Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter, 1984

An immortal killer with unquenchable blood lust, Jason Voorhees has quite a number of tool-related murders under his belt. Axe, hammer claw, pitchfork, shears, wrench… the list goes on. In Part IV, Jason picks up a three-pronged garden claw to kill victim Rob. Not the best choice; it takes multiple swings before Jason finishes butchering the poor guy.

Chainsaw Hand— Evil Dead II, 1987

“What, you never saw a guy with a chainsaw hand before?” No self-respecting tradie is caught dead without his tools. Ash Williams takes this a step further by attaching a modified chainsaw to his right arm, after he is forced to sever his deadite-possessed hand. He also proves himself handy (see what I did there?) with a shotgun and a shovel.

Nail Gun — Final Destination 3, 2006

Death comes relentlessly for a group of stubborn teenagers after they escape their intended fate. And for Erin Ulmer, death comes in the form of a nail gun to the back of the head. The lesson here, boys and girls, is never leave your tools unattended on a precarious stack of boxes after you tick off the Grim Reaper.

Power Drill — The Driller Killer, 1979

The movie is messy, the murderer’s insane, and the title has some darn fine consonance. The Driller Killer features several brutal deaths with (who would’ve guessed it?) a power drill, after struggling artist Reno becomes irritated by his neighbours’ music. An overreaction, perhaps, but an effective weapon of choice.

Garden Shears — The Burning, 1981

From caretaker to landscaper, burn victim Cropsy picks up a pair of deadly garden shears in his quest for revenge. He skillfully slashes throats, stabs stomachs, and pins horny teens to trees with his gardening tool, before a would-be victim manages to turn the tables. Cropsy’s shears are imbedded in his own back before he is set ablaze once more.

Woodchipper — Tucker and Dale VS Evil, 2010

This comedy-horror features multiple death, including would-be hero Mike, who launches himself at well-meaning hillbillies Tucker and Dale, but misses… and accidentally finds himself in a woodchipper. In fact, the movie is full of accidental suicides, from a college kid impaling himself on a tree, to a sheriff getting beaned in the head by a beam full of nails.

All the tools — The Toolbox Murders, 1978

Driven insane by the death of his daughter, serial killer Vance goes on a rampage and kills people with a power drill… and a hammer, and a screwdriver, and a nail gun. Worst of all? He doesn’t maintain a single one of them. Just puts them bloodily back into his toolbox. That’s a great way to rust your equipment, Vance.