What the Hell did I just watch? Let me tell you, grindhouse is alive and well in 2018 and that’s plain to see in Hectic Films Productions’ Machine Gun Baby… which is absolutely, honestly everything that its title implies. Presented by Film Regions International and written by Rickey Bird Jr. and Andrea Hilt, Machine Gun Baby follows a child in its last trimester who survives his abortion and seeks revenge on the corrupt doctor, his slutacious mother, and everyone else who wronged him before he received a chance at life. Brinke Stevens (Slumber Party Massacre), DT Carney, Jared Rice, Jin N Tonic, George McArthur, Ernesto Gomez and Erica Rey star in a thirty-minute action horror thriller from director Rickey Bird Jr. and executive producer Russ McGaffin. The best way I can describe Machine Gun Baby is Terminator in an abortion clinic, and while it’s incredibly campy, gory and outrageous, it’s not entirely perfect.
Notorious for being exploitative, violent, campy and cheap, grindhouse movies are all well and good except for that last part. After the 70’s and 80’s, it became hard for movies to capture the essence of grindhouse movies – and studios more often then not put out films that appeared low budget without the iconic, desired atmosphere. When examining Machine Gun Baby, the short film falls in the middle. It’s wildly entertaining, bizarre, bloody and filled with perverse erotica, but some areas of production needed a little extra effort. Especially the audio and some of the acting. The content sometimes goes a little too far, even for a movie about an aborted baby with a miniature Gatling gun, and reeling it all back just a bit would have been greatly beneficial. Luckily, Machine Gun Baby has the added bonus of dry humor nipping at the edges of every performance. It’s awesome to elicit a few chuckles while dodging bullets, cursing up a storm, and staring at a few pairs of boobs. I’ve seen this type of material before in 2011, but Ricky Bird Jr.’s vision was more cohesive and put together well.
Speaking of added bonuses, Machine Gun Baby also has cannibalism and a co-starring role from scream queen Brinke Stevens. Yay cannibalism in horror movies, and Ms. Stevens is still an instant crowd pleaser. She may be a little too stoic for my taste in this title, but there’s no denying that her presence in this short film further elevates its appeal to its core fan base. I’m also thrilled to see Ms. Stevens still kicking ass in the genre in 2018. With tons of gunfire and a top quality, silicone baby-puppet villain, I didn’t think Machine Gun Baby was going to be as enthralling and entertaining as it turned out to be. Abortion is still a hot topic in America, and I’m glad that Ricky Bird Jr. chose that as a jumping point instead of making a preachy movie about life choices. A dirty, campy splatterfest of epic proportions, Machine Gun Baby features cinematography from Adam Wayne and post-production editing from Bird and Jason Sanders.
I don’t know where this will fit in in the film festival circuit, but god damnit if it’s not one of the most barbaric and savage short films of the year. Final Score: 8 out of 10.