Tourist Trap (1979)

Tourist Trap (1979) movie poster

director David Schmoeller
viewed: 10/02/2017

A little Texas Chainsaw, a little Psycho, through a prism of countrified Wax Museum, David Schmoeller’s Tourist Trap is oddly more interesting than one might think. Maybe throw in some Stephen King type of psychic powers too.

Chuck Connors hosts the weirdness at his little off-the-beaten-path animatronic wax museum. When a group of young people break down on the road nearby, the intrigues start right off the bat.

The first kill struck me as reminiscent of Evil Dead 2, where everything comes alive and laughs. Inspiration for Sam Raimi perhaps?

For my money, it’s the mannequins and masks, designed by Robert A. Burns, who had worked on Chainsaw. Whether eerily filling up a room, looming, distorted, or smiling. Inanimate or animate, they strike a certain character that gives the film a creepiness it wouldn’t otherwise have achieved.

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