It is a tougher job than one might imagine, being a film reviewer. There are so many films released each week and finding the time to write a review for each one you see is a tough thing. Sometimes it’s worthwhile when you find an unexpected gem and sometimes you just know going into a film that it’s just going to disappoint you. While the ideal situation would be to go into a film with as little expectation to avoid disappoint or over-praise as possible, it’s an almost impossible situation. So in the middle of the Oscar season frenzy there is the counter-programming of the release of Texas Chainsaw (in 3D no less). Beware, there are spoilers ahead.
Set as a sequel to Tobe Hooper’s masterpiece The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, the simple and teenage-friendly Texas Chainsaw (3D) follows Heather (Alexandria Daddrio) the long-lost cousin of Leatherface (Dan Yeagar) who through some convoluted nonsense doesn’t know she’s related until she is given the family house when her grandmother passes away. Heather, avoiding the warnings of her ˜parents’ descends on the house with her generic, teenage friends. There she learns the shocking truth that Leatherface lives and he promptly starts picking off her friends. Can Heather survive the monsters attack? Will she learn the truth of the townspeople? Does anyone remotely care about any of this?
In the modern horror remake game The Texas Chainsaw Massacre has 3 sequels and a Michael Bay produced reboot and subsequent sequel to its name. Other classics like A Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th and Halloween have had similar treatment, but none have come close to the quality of the originals It can now be safely assumed that Texas Chainsaw is the worst of this new breed. Not content with massacring any originality, it actively takes pleasure in removing any soul, character, coherent plot of pacing.
The generic teenage victims are uniformly awful, to the point of being unbelievable as human beings. The only saving grace is Leatherface. An iconic horror villain who bludgeons, hooks and yes saws his way through them. It’s tough not to see him as the hero of Texas Chainsaw as he promptly disposes of all the bad elements. Satisfying. But then, in shock twist of shock twists, it is revealed that he is actually the hero. In a scene so ill-advised that it could only be the work of a team of producers so devoid of artistic merit themselves, they have Leatherface beaten by some locals until Heather actually saves his life.
I’m sure Texas Chainsaw is trying to portray the deep and meaningful message that the true evil in the world is humanity. Well yes, and you know who is part of humanity? Leatherface. He’s human. He wields a chainsaw and kills other humans. He wears a mask made of human skin. He’s not the good guy in the confines of this painful viewing experience. Idiots. Texas Chainsaw is a dreadful film that is an utterly pointless waste of time.