Inspired by my love for the 1980 horror comedy “Motel Hell”, here are 15 more essential drive-in movies similar to this genre gem that you need to see.
“It takes all kinds of critters to make Farmer Vincent’s fritters.”
Motel Hell is one of my all time favorite films. Released around Halloween in 1980, this 1980 horror comedy bucked the slasher trend of the time to serve up a heaping helping of horror satire and black comedy. Directed by Kevin Connor, it stars Rory Calhoun, Nancy Parsons, and Nina Axelrod. The plot follows a farmer, butcher, motel manager, and meat entrepreneur Vincent Smith, who traps travelers and harvests them for his human sausages.
Vincent runs the Motel Hello (the “o” in the sign has burned out, giving the motel an unfortunate new moniker) with his sister Ida. The two also have a side hustle selling the best smoked meat in the county, made from a secret ingredient “grown” in a garden out back. When a beautiful young woman named Terry begins an unexpected stay at the motel and develops a fondness for Vincent, the mystery of just how he makes his tasty “fritters” threatens to come to light.
This is one of the rare horror films that has yet to be remade (surprisingly). So if you’re like me and find yourself hungry for more of this tasty genre fare, you’ll have to settle for the smorgasbord of films that either helped inspire or were inspired in some way by this satisfying cult classic.