Review: Skinned Deep (2004)

By Ursa McKracken –
Best bad quote:
“I didn’t know if you were hungry, so I brought you some soup and money.”

A vacationing family get a flat tire and rely on the kindness of a weird old woman at a local rest stop. And, because the family have never seen The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, they find themselves brutally and hilariously murdered by a strange set of monstrous siblings and their grandma-mother, Granny, after being invited to a dinner of raw flesh served on cardboard. There’s nothing really interesting about the human family except that they are ridiculously stupid and annoying. Oh, and their acting is atrocious, but in a hilarious way. The mother, father and brother are, as I’ve said, thankfully, brutally and deliciously slain very early on. However, the “better actress,” moody teenaged Tina, is kept alive because the sensitive sibling, Brain, wants to keep her. He’s called Brain because he has a huge, grotesque exposed brain, often covered by a disgusting burlap sack. Despite his absolute filthiness and the murderous tendencies that run in his family, Brain is very sweet and just wants Tina to love him.

Of course, because all homicidal families consist of radically different personalities, Brain’s two brothers are completely different from him. First, there is Surgeon General. He’s the bad ass motherfucker you see on the box art with the huge metal jaws. He does most of the killing in the family, though, disappointingly, not with his jaws. He does have a small hand held blade that’s good for slicing throats and dicing stupid people. He slices Tina’s little brother completely in half, for fuck’s sake. Then, there’s the veteran of hilariously bad movies himself, Warwick Davis. In Skinned Deep he plays an albino (or flour covered, I’m not quite sure which) twitchy, insane imp called Plates. On his back he wears a spring loaded basket of, you guessed it, plates and throws them at his enemies while laughing manically. He only actually kills one person this way, but it’s the murderous intent that counts!

If the wacky homicidal characters don’t have you interested yet, then what the hell is wrong with you? Ahem, I mean, then just wait! It gets more ridiculous. With Tina imprisoned in a room plastered floor to ceiling with newspaper,  Granny gets back to running her rest stop diner, where a group of geriatric bikers called the Ancient Ones stop for coffee. The leader of the pack stays behind in order to get some sweet grandma lovin,’ but is quickly slain when Tina, who has escaped, begs for help. When their leader doesn’t show up, the Ancient Ones go back only to discover his blood soaked jacket. Of course, this means war. The battle comes later, though.

In the mean time, Tina and Brain go on date! Brain dons a Kindergartener’s construction paper and plastic bead Indian headdress and takes Tina for a ride on his motorcycle. While on their picnic Brain and Tina have a serious conversation about Brain’s daddy issues with his Creator and Brain fantasizes that he were normal. Everyone wants to run down the streets of New York completely naked with their penis flopping about, right?


The next day Tina and Brain are wed in beautiful ceremony where several fat rednecks are slaughtered by Surgeon General and Plates waxes poetic about his love of plates. The ceremony culminates with Surgeon General and Plates forcing Tina to feed one of the rednecks sand until he dies. Pitiful Brain begs them not to make her do it because she is innocent, but the redneck just dies too darn fast for them to have a good conversation about it.


Luckily for Tina, Brain is a sweet boy and he decides to let her trauma subside instead of consummating their marriage the same night. What Brain doesn’t know, however, that Tina’s first kill has awakened an angry beast inside her- a beast that is thirsty for blood and vengeance. Brain comes to apologize to Tina and she tries to convince him to run away with her. Because he is basically a dweeby, filthy human with a huge brain and a homicidal family, he understandably declines. So, in the saddest and most hilarious scene ever, she rips open his head and he dies horribly, writhing on the floor. As he dies, the contents of his brain, wooden children’s blocks covered in green goo, spill out and spell “LOVE.” Tina stomps the blocks and when she lifts her foot, they spell “HATE.” Harsh, man.


As Tina escapes into the bowels of the house, the Ancient Ones show up to wreak some vengeance of their own. One by one each member of the family, including the mysterious Creator- a headless, oily body builder with a loincloth labeled “DYNO-MITE!!” – meet their well-deserved fates in horrible, horrific and hilarious ways. The film even has a twist ending in store for poor Tina, who escapes to the local Sherriff’s office. Well, it’s a twist for anyone who doesn’t know anything about horror movies, but still.


When I first saw this movie in 2005 I was just getting into B-movies. Back then, I had a lot of fun with it. But, five years and many viewings later, I can honestly say that this is my favorite “bad” movie. Everything about this movie is hilarious, from the acting that’s so bad it almost seems intentional to the absolutely balls out absurdity of the story. Skinned Deep is the epitome of the hilariously bad movie, or so-bad-it’s-good movie, that we, as bad movie lovers hope to be blessed with when we put a new film into our DVD player.



5 out of 5 Strangled Cats

You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

One Response to “Review: Skinned Deep (2004)”

  1. The woman who plays Granny has got to be the worst actress(intentional or not)of all time. This movie should definitely be a cult classic by the way, I hope more people get a chance to check it out.

Leave a Reply