A gang of low-life tattooists drive around in their van, killing bad customers in order to take their money.
I should start this review by saying that I am totally for the use of "tattsploitation" with a movie like this. In fact, tattoos should get more room in horror movies to begin with, it's certainly something that people are interested in. There should be a movie that makes people scared of tattooists like some movies have made people scared of dentists and doctors. "Degenerates Ink" is definitely not the movie for that - it's not a horror movie in that sense. It's not slow-brewing or subtle enough for that, instead it's just quick to the kill and then moving on.
The story literally ends after this sentence: tattooists drive around in a van and they kill people. That's the story. It's all there is to it, really! Sure, we get some details about how they hate TV tattooists (which I thought was pretty funny - but of course a film like this had to bring that up, wouldn't have worked any other way) and all that, but it's nothing that becomes an important part of the movie. The movie starts with some customers, it slowly moves towards them killing people, and then it literally ends. The ending is entertaining in a silly way, though. I mean, it's fucking ridiculous and it just doesn't fit or make sense, but that's why I sort of enjoyed it. It was absurdly retarded!
One thing that made this movie less interesting than it could've been was that the characters didn't seem very scary, and the kills were tame. The needle should've been used a lot more as a murder weapon - maybe even go to the extreme of torturing the victims with it. Too many people were killed with hits or whatever, and it just didn't satisfy. It should've focused on getting one person in a small space, with one tattooist, and have him attack people's fears when it comes to tattooing. Maybe just sticking the needle too deep, or shoving it into places you don't want it (under the nails!). "Degenerates Ink" focused more on being a trashy, more straight forward slasher where they just kill the victims however they can at that moment, and then move on to next victim.
With the story being as compact as it was in this movie, and the runtime being an hour, there's not much I can tell you about the movie. Can you blame a movie like this for not having a good plot? I don't know. It's obviously grown out of the 70's exploitation genre and it has a short runtime so we never get time to be bored by it. But did I like it? I didn't really. I mean, to some extent, yeah, it wasn't boring and that very, very vital. I should say that I was much more interested in the trailer they included for "The Thrillbillys". That looked like hella fun in all its scratchy grit. "Degenerates Ink" is bound to get some love out of some selected people, it's not terrible, but overall I think the filmmakers should move on to another movie and put some focus on getting it to have a good, working plot. They say it's "a movie about tattooin' and killin' - and tattooin'", and I guess that's true.