The Mangler (1995)

Directed by: Tobe Hooper

Written by: Tobe Hooper, Stephen David Brooks & Harry Allen Towers
Stephen King (Novel)


Ted Levine .... Officer John Hurdon
Daniel Matmor .... Mark Jackson
Robert Englund .... William Gartley
Jeremy Crutchley .... J.J.J. Pictureman / Mortician
Vanessa Pike .... Sherry Oulette
Demetre Phillips .... George Stanner
Lisa Morris .... Lin Sue

Release Dates: Theatrical: March 3, 1995; Offscreen Film Festival: March 22, 2015 (Belgium)






A police officer named John Hurdon (Ted Levine) tries to look for clues after a bunch of grizzly murders happen in a steam factory at the Blue Ribbon Laundry after a steam ironer kills some employees there and is owned by a greedy and evil man named Bill Gartley (Robert Englund) who will stop at nothing to keep his business going.
John with his sidekick Mark Jackson (Daniel Matmor) does some researching and discovers that steam ironer is posessed by a blood thirsty demon seeking mainly virgin women.
John must battle the evil Gartley to put a stop to his factory even if it means his life by destroying this demonic beast and he tries to get the aid of Gartley's niece Sherry Oulette (Vanessa Pike) to help him out on this deadly case.


A perfect beginning to the film with people working at a steam factory with women working up a sweat and an obnoxious supervisor George Stanner getting demanding with his employees like he's cracking the whip as this looks impressive at a place you'd hate to go to work every day. Also nice close up shots on the women working away at the steam machine machine as there's great shots with this device looking quite evil as it has a perfect horror taste to all of this along with Sherry Oulette suddenly getting her fingers caught and things look intense wonder ing if she will get caught into the machine as well as good shots on blood marks revealed on the sheets being made at the foctory in which none of this looked pleesant at all.
Nice moments with the owner William Gartley coming out and talking to George and telling him to make sure his employees work till they drop dead which leaves a good impression that he's behind the madness to the horror which will later on unveil when we keep watching all of this.
Nice situations with a supporting character Mrs. Frawley being motherly towards Sherry with their conversations in which this seems to work in well for working in an awful and stressful place plus we do see some nice close up stressful situations with Frawley taking some pills as well as George cutting in and growling at her and the other employees as well as making her spill them landing into the machine as you feel like hitting this bastard for being too hard on everyone. Plus a nice suspenseful shot on Frawley trying to get her pills away from the machine wondering if she will get caught into this device. Things looked perfectly intense and should please fans of horror violence by what happens here along with some of the girls crying hysterically as this made things look truly tragic by all that was happening here making the scene worthy for a disturbing moment.
Good moments on Officer John Hurdon finding out the murder case there as well as him getting sick when he sees the results which is another nice horror touch to the picture.
Also we have some nice flowing conversations with John and his sidekick Mark Jackson at his place when he's disturbed by what had happened there and discussing many situations as well as Mark suggesting that the mangler was possessed due to all the trouble it has caused as well as taking virgins for victims and John getting sarcastic. The moments here seemed a bit campy but at the same time worked in well for a dark story such as what we continue to see here.
More effective moments in the factory as there's the machine in front of one of the employees Lin Sue with a painful accident happening towards her as well as this mangler showing off steam and lit up looking deadly as well as the intensity surrounding everyone around this.
Also we get a creepily charming situation with William towards Lin as well as her emotional attitude which looked good and still by what was going on in this scene. Certainly a nice drawing moment but at the same time confusing as she makes out to be lustful to him and then scared. Doesn't make sense.
Perfect drawn in moment when they question Sherry on what had happened as well as John showing some sympathy for this poor girl in which this for sure grabbed your attention and looking believeable as well as the intensity going into a rage when Mark asks if she's a virgin and later on in the vehicle John giving him a rough time for asking her that which looked energised.
Nice dark moment when both John and Mark go to a neighbors place to check out the ice box from the factory as well as them opening it and seeing a dove which looked cute and then Mark getting the bird out cautiously as this makes you watch carefully. Then something happens towards Mark as this looked a little too obvious and a bit cheesy. However a real effective moment when John whacks the thing with a sledge hammer and knocks the top off with great ghostly types of effects shooting up into the sky which is a total attention grabber and a great haunting moment.
Great powerful moments when John demands towards George to see William and forcing his way in as well as great intensity going on when he demands this evil prick to shut down the factory. Plus impressive moments when he discusses the historical moment on how he got than machine as to how alike him and that machine is which is good and wicked as to how this was all done.
Perfect intense situation when George has his arm caught into the machine as well as him demanding one of his assitants to cut his arm off with an axe but this person is hesitant as this for sure looked like a good peer pressuring moment as well as psychological on what to do before the machine eats this person up.
Perfect intense moments when William and Lin try to force Sherry into the machine while John tries to rescue her which makes you wonder if he will save her on time. Plus good fighting sequences between John and William in front of the machine which makes you wonder on who will survive this madness.
There's a campy moment when both John and Mark tries to exorcise the machine as this was way too hard to take seriously when you watch on what goes on here.
Things start to really roll when we see a mechanical type of monster coming out of the machine and tries to chase after the surviving people as this offers some nice twists and turns throughout all of this.
Bottom line is that this is a very cool film based on one of Stephen King's short stories from his Night Shift chapters. It stands out very well and truly suspenseful too. This film reigned in as a cult classic for sure as it has many perfect touches and effects brought to life on the screen. It gives a great nasty environment of not wanting to work at a factory like that.
Followed by two sequels.

The acting is terrific in this one Ted Levine (Officer John Hurdon) was great as a tough as nails cop in the film and shows terrific energy. He for sure shows alot of dynamic aggression and not taking crap from anyone. Plus shows off a good no nonsense attitude. Does well with his sarcasm too in a certain spot of the film. Shows a nice and caring attitude which he drew in greatly. Does well taking a swing at someone as well as showing a great rage too. He was one of the best actors in this flick and had the perfect look and appeal to this role.
Daniel Matmor (Mark Jackson) shows off a good bubbly and light headed type of persona into this role and trying to make things seem light to what he's talking about. Also shows alot of good spunk and energy into his role. Plus shows it off well when being outspoken during a certain part of a scene. He shows nice characteristics but his looks seemed too grungy but again made me wonder if he was playing a narcotics officer.
Robert Englund (William Gartley) can wear many hats as a horror villain than just Freddy Krueger as he lived to play this role as a vicious nasty factory owner. He stood out terrifically too. Best actor out of them all. Shows a good hissing in his words and really packed a punch with his negative attitude. Also does well with his mellow creepy charming behavior. Comes across well by acting sleazy in certain segments of the flick.
Jeremy Crutchley (J.J.J. Pictureman / Mortician) knew his craft pretty well as an eccentric photographer with his strange actions and speaking acting above normal by what he does. Plus shows some nice mysterious actions as well as his strange expressions too. Brings this to life and was the most effective supporting role in the film and a good key role to the story to top it all off. Also was good choking out his words during the end of his performance.
Vanessa Pike (Sherry Oulette) plays a great innocent character as the niece of the owner if the factory and is a true character actress with what she provided in this film. Offers a good timid type of behavior as well as knowing on how to cry uncontrollably. Shows off nice intense attitude as well in other areas showing a great high pitched type of energy. Reacts well to being scared emotionally. Also at the end offers a great coldness showing off a great versatality.
Demetre Phillips (George Stanner) made his part so real as an arrogant assistant employer at the factory ordering people around and being demanding. He had the right brawny presence as well as doing well acting obnoxious and not letting any of his intense energy down at all. Adds a nice softness and sympathy later on to dangerous situations. He offered a nice change to his personality and does it just as good.
Lisa Morris (Lin Sue) was another cast member who stood out well as a sleazy and evil employee in the factory.
She seemed to do well with her tense emotional behavior during the beginning of her performance as well as doing well by being stuck up too. Plus pulls off a great thrust after turning into the evil type with her menacing behavior just letting it all out. She was a good force of energy.

Some interesting horror violence.
People are sucked into a steam ironer and gets bloodied, folded and crushed. Later on the reseults are extremely gruesome.
An assistant employers arm is cut off with an axe.
A man is split in two.

Barrington Pheloung has the perfect chemistry for this film as his music isn't overly mainstream as I like it like that alot of times for a horror film. There's good peaceful piano playing as well as the clarinet sounds for the mellow scene's while we watch those moments. Also perfect dark and suspenseful playing for when the terror starts as this sounded perfectly dark as well as some screeching sounds too adding more great touches to this horror flick.