When The Texas Chain Saw Massacre landed in cinemas in 1974 it was an instant hit and quickly gained a reputation for being a horrific and confronting horror film. However, over time it has lost a lot of its impact. The scares just aren’t there anymore and its amateur production has shone through. That hasn’t stopped its cult following though and definitely hasn’t stopped studios from milking the name with remakes, prequels and now another proper sequel to the original.
Texas Chainsaw picks up exactly where the original film finished, with that film’s surviving victim getting the cops out to the Sawyer farm. After the stand-off between cops, locals and the Sawyer’s has ended, there remains only three survivors – Leatherface, Grandma and the baby cousin, Heather, who is essentially kidnapped by a local. The film then moves to 2012, Heather has just learnt she is adopted and has been given the Sawyer family home after the death of her real Grandma. Heather and her friends decide to visit the old home, when one of them unleashes the monster in the basement… bom bom bommmm.
The issues with the film are apparent from the get go. Heather and her friends are in their early 20s, well they are at least played by actors in their early 20s, but the character of Heather is meant to be 39 years old. There are several of these time continuation errors throughout the film. Many of the returning characters should now be in their 70s or 80s, instead they never age and are still in their 30s and 40s, they even have their same jobs that they had in 1974. Leatherface himself, who I believe is aged 20 in the original, should now be 60 and using a zimmer-frame. Leatherface though also discovered and drunk from the fountain of youth and is still able to run miles waving a heavy chainsaw above his head.
These are just an example of the huge issues in a script that plays out like it was put together by a group of fourteen year olds whilst drunk at 6am. I swear the script was probably written on a diner napkin and given to executives the day before shooting was scheduled to begin. The script is all-round awful, even the few things the film does right aren’t worth acknowledging because in the end they are still poorly handled.
The Texas Chainsaw series really needed this film to work. By filming and releasing Texas Chainsaw in 3D they had the chance to make a fun entry in a series known for being dark, dirty and a torture to sit through. Instead the producers completely pissed away the opportunity by delivering yet another tired film into a franchise that should have been sawed into tiny pieces after the first. For a studio struggling to find hits it is strange that Lionsgate would plunge $20 million into a franchise that barely has a pulse. With only $34 million world-wide, and needing another $16 million to start making a profit, I hope this finally kills it.
1.0 out of 5.0