The movie Drive in Massacre (1976) is an American B-movie slasher horror movie written and directed by Stu Segall, and co-written by John F. Goff and George Buck Flower. The film is set in a rural California town at a drive-in theater [¹].
The plot of the movie Drive in Massacre (1976) revolves around a series of brutal murders committed by an unseen assailant who uses a sword as his weapon of choice. The movie begins with a couple attending a drive-in theater. They are butchered by the unseen assailant, who decapitates the man and skewers the woman through the neck [¹].
The gruesome dual homicide is investigated by police detectives Mike Leary and John Koch. They interview the drive-in’s manager, Austin Johnson, and the custodian, Germy. Germy mentions that a peeping tom frequents the area to watch couples and lone girls. He is instructed to note down the voyeur’s license plate number the next time he sees him .
Later that night, the killer strikes again, impaling two lovers while they are making out in their vehicle. A sword is left behind at the scene of the crime. To determine if the sword belongs to the missing drive-in owner, Germy is brought in to the police station to identify it. Germy states that the sword is not a part of the owner’s private collection. He also informs the detectives that the voyeur was at the drive-in around the time of the latest double murder, and that he managed to write down the man’s license plate number.
The plate number is traced back to a man named Orville Ingleson. When the detectives visit Orville’s home, he denies any connection to the deaths. However, when a bloody cloth is found in his car, he panics and tries to flee. Orville is caught and claims that the blood was from a dog he accidentally ran over. This claim is confirmed by further analysis, forcing the police to let him go¹.
That evening, the detectives (one of them disguised as a woman) go to a screening at the drive-in. They spot Orville there, even though he had promised to stay away from it. After a customer who had stormed off when his girlfriend refused his advances returns to his car, he discovers that his girlfriend has been beheaded. Leary and Koch rush to Orville’s car, and find him dead from a slit throat. Austin and Germy are brought in for questioning at the station. Austin antagonizes the detectives, refusing to close the drive-in without a court order, and firing Germy [¹].
The following evening, Leary and Koch receive a call about a machete-wielding man who has just murdered two people and is cornered in a warehouse, with a little girl he has taken hostage. The detectives go to the warehouse, and after a chase and standoff, shoot the man dead. They learn afterward that he was a mental patient who had escaped only a few hours ago, and thus he cannot be the serial killer. At the drive-in, Germy collects his things, and goes to the projection booth to confront Austin about which one of them gets to keep the owner’s sword collection, and about money he is owed [¹].
- John F. Goff as Police Det. Mike Leary
- Steve Vincent as Police Psychologist
- Douglas Gudbye as Germy
- Verkina Flower as Little Girl in Warehouse
- Robert E. Pearson as Austin Johnson
- Catherine Barkley as Kathy
- Norman Sheridan as Orville Ingleson
- John Alderman as Jim
- Jacqueline Giroux as Arlene
- Bruce Kimball as Police Det. John Koch
- Martin Gatsby as David
- Sandi Carey as Lori
- Janus Blythe as Alan’s Girl
- Myron Griffith as Alan
The majority of the cast used pseudonyms because this movie was made non-union and they wanted to avoid being fined by the Screen Actors Guild. 
The movie was shot in four days. 
The script was written in a single week. 
The sequence with Germy at the carnival was filmed without a permit. 
The sequence in the warehouse with George ‘Buck’ Flower was added at the last minute in order to pad out the running time to a reasonable feature length. 
In majority of the promotional material for the film, the title was misspelled, as, Drive In Masacre. 
All the nighttime scenes at the drive-in theater were shot in a single evening⁸. The poster featured the following warning: “DRIVE-IN MASSACRE has been deemed by an independent film board to be too terrifying for viewing by the average theatre patron.” 
According to a review on Genre Grinder, the film is “a technical nightmare on all levels” and “Aside from a great opening double death sequence, there really isn’t enough happening in the film to recommend it. It’s an oddity, but one not worth much more than a single curious glance.” 
Another review on McBastard’s Mausoleum describes the film as “a fun watch if you happen to catch it on one night or acquire it in a film pack.” 
A review on The Movie Sleuth states that the film “is better than expected – thought it might have been a grindhouse style of film but it’s not. It’s a slasher, bloody but not a lot of that going on… it’s main focus is on two cops trying to solve the murders!”