Movie Review: Night of the Tommyknockers (2022)

January 11, 2023

Written by DanXIII

Daniel XIII; the result of an arcane ritual involving a King Diamond album, a box of Count Chocula, and a copy of Swank magazine, is a screenwriter, director, producer, actor, artist, and reviewer of fright flicks…Who hates ya baby?

Meanwhile in the rootin, tootin ol’ West…

A group of miners blast open a new section of the mine they work and unleash murderous, gold  lustin’, zombie-like monsters known as Tommyknockers… which cuts their work day short, that’s for damn sure…

Adjacent to that horror biz, The Dirt Gang, lead by a dude named Dirk (Richard Grieco), are haulin’ ass towards their next bank heist after fucking up the last one six ways to Sunday in a rather messy (read: fatal) fashion.

They soon arrive at the eerily deserted town of Deer Creek; a town that should be busy as a basket of beastly bees thanks to it’s location next to a prosperous gold mine… but as you can guess, that sinister shaft  is Ground Zero for those terrible Tommyknockers!

Will the Gang survive to ride another day or will they end up Monster Chow… or brought to justice by bounty hunters… or die by revenge for their past deeds… honestly it doesn’t look good for these cats…

Coming from Mahal Empire productions (brothers Michael and Sonny Mahal, who co-wrote this  picture along with frequent collaborator Rolfe Kanefsky) and their long-time director Michael Su (Bridge of the Doomed, Death Count), Night of the Tommyknockers presents a surprising change in paradigm, as a full-on western isn’t what one would expect from a creature-feature closer in kin to a gut-munchin’ zombie flick than High Noon… but  it works incredibly well across the be-deviled board!

Helping things flow is the pace; we get a slower-paced (all things considered) first act that slides nice n’ easy into a break-neck remainder filled with action, mayhem, murder, and ungodly combinations and iterations of them all!

Of course what you horror hounds really want to know is, “How are the special effects?” Well, let me tell ya my cats n’ creeps we get ladles of grizzly gore (practically realized thankfully), and plenty of that good ol’ men-in-suit monster action that really gets my spurs a spinnin’!

Additionally the cast assembled here is strong, and features solid performances from familiar character actors such as Tom Sizemore (Saving Private Ryan), Robert LaSardo (who co-starred in both of those Mahal productions mentioned up yonder), as well as Grieco (TV’s 21 Jump Street).

All in all, Night of the Tommyknockers is an entertaining genre mash-up loaded to the revoltin’ rafters with gunslingers, ghastly ghoulies, and gory good-times!


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