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The movie is very good...if you're into this kind of thing. It's nice
to see a franchise splatter film that is intense and gory without being
cheesy. Many of the current crop of splatter films are played
intentionally cheesy for humor. Which is fine, but they shouldn't ALL
be like that. This movie has some humor in it, but it's a darker humor,
and not meant to be cheesy or campy.
Everything that comes to mind when you hear the words "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" is in this movie. No wussing-out in this one! Murder, torture, cannibalism, insanity and a touch of the surreal. Oh yeah, and a chainsaw. No punches are pulled, so this flick is not for the squeamish.
Tonally it wasn't as surreal as the original, but it had a better (read: creepier) tone than the 2003 remake. Plenty of blood and guts. R. Lee Ermey plays a major character instead of a bit-player like in the 2003 remake, and the film benefits from this.
Prequel to the 2003 "Texas Chainsaw..." giving us the origin of
Leatherface and his twisted family. That's all done within the first 20
minutes...then it's just a virtual redo on the original with four
likable 20-somethings being captured and tortured by Leatherface and
his family. Considering it's basically a remake of the 2003 film, it
works remarkably well.
It takes place in 1969 and has two brothers (Taylor Handley and Matthew Bomer) going to enlist (after being drafted). Along are their two girlfriends (Jordana Brewster and Diora Baird). But they're stopped by crazy Sheriff Hoyt (R. Lee Ermey) who is Leatherface's uncle...and the "fun" begins.
Very grim and graphic with no humor and shot in muted color...just as the 2003 one. The gore is strong and disgusting (this got trimmed to get an R rating) and I can't say I liked it...but it did it's job. It scared me. I was cringing in my seat a few times and jumped more than once.
Another plus is ALL the acting is good. Brewster, Handley, Baird and Bomer are all good-looking and likable--when the violence starts you really are horrified at seeing such great characters being tortured. Ermey is on hand giving another terrifying performance as Hoyt. His character is so twisted, violent and sick that when he got a taste of his own medicine my quiet audience broke out in applause. Also there's good old Leatherface and his chainsaw chasing everybody.
In some ways I applaud a grim, graphic R rated horror film that pulls no punches--I HATE the watered down PG-13 crap we usually get. But unlike some (like "Scream") this is pretty unrelenting and wears you down. But it scared me and that's exactly what it's supposed to do. An 8.
Please don't get me wrong, this is a good horror film. To those looking
for gore, it is there any there is plenty of blood shed. I would
speculate several scenes have been cut to appease the mpaa. Had this
film been release before Hostel, The Hills Have Eyes, or the Saw
Franchise, more of the film would have ended up on the cutting room
floor. The film is being advertised as it will show up how Tommy Hewitt
became Leatherface. Anyone looking for any real discovery to this
information will have to look somewhere else. Truthfully the only real
incite into the Hewitt family origin is how a homicidal sexual deviant
was able to become a Sheriff. Being a prequel, the lack of background
information is, to say the least, disappointing.
I don't want to get into specifics, but there are several parts where the film feels as though it being recycled. Some scenes feel as if they were rehashed from other Chainsaw films, needless to say they did not live up. Add to this the typical slasher clichés (don't go upstairs/down to the basement, etc) and it only adds to the predictability.
Texas Chainsaw Massacre:The Beginning is a fantastic slasher film that
brings us back to the classic era of 1970's slashers.I loved this
chainsaw film simply because it answers all the whys and provides you
with leatherface's history.Definitely gorier than the previous film and
far more cringe inducing.This is first non cheesy slasher i've seen in
ages which is a very nice change for me personally.
The acting in the film is very good there are some very intense performances and some graphic scenes.It's shot very 70's slasherseque which overall gives it a creepy aura.The storyline is very easy to follow yet very disturbing and depressing at the same time.Overall fans of The Devil's Rejects and The Hills Have Eyes see Texas Chainsaw Massacre:The Beginning it's well worth the admission fee.
Impresively taking "Texas Chainsaw" back to its roots, horror fans and
cinema-goers alike should definitely give this prequel to the daring
2003 remake a chance. Although the remake in 2003 was excellent and had
a tighter, more involving plot than this film, it breaks a barrier
because rather than directly approaching the style of the remake and
trying to live up to its success, this equally grisly thriller ignores
all of the gloss, cinematography, pacing and story that it was inspired
from. Instead, it goes back to the film style which made the nightmare
in 1974, a more direct homage to the in your face horror that started
This story is in 1963, right before the events of the 2003 film which took place in the early seventies. Jordana Brewster plays Chrissie, who is on a fun road-trip across Texas with her friends, Eric, Dean, and Bailey, played well off of each other by Matthew Bomer, Taylor Handley and Diora Baird.
Shortly after the terrifying, recognizable psycho Leatherface commits his first murders, a cross story involving an encounter with some nasty bikers throws the doomed teenagers flipping across the road in a surprisingly brutal accident.
After Sheriff Hoyt arrives (R. Lee Ermy in another chilling performance), to take control of the scene, the nightmare begins for Chrissie's friends as she watches them get taken away in his police car, unknowingly headed for the house which would become a place of torment and nightmares for years to ensue.
Appropriately gory and no-holds barred, Jonathan Liebesman creates a tight, slick and sadistic thriller in the eyes of Chrissie as she endlessly attempts to rescue her friends from a demented madman's clutches. This is a highly worthy and satisfying entry in the horror series that will make an indelible mark on your imagination, if not already done by the seemingly endless spew of remakes and graphic horror films.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This movie was gore merely for the sake of gore. There was zero suspense knowing that all of the characters would die. The problem I've always had with the Texas Chainsaw Massacre movies is this idea that the state police never seem to come knocking after these gruesome deaths occur and the victims go missing. It's a kind of oh well we'll just overlook that one glaring plot hole, but unfortunately it's a big one and just too big to ignore. This Chainsaw film just seemed utterly pointless based on that fact and completely insulting to average intelligence. At least in the 2003 film, the main character, Jessica Biel, manages to escape. Every single character is so one dimensional and disposable that I didn't feel anything for the characters. What I did feel was sympathy for the actors playing these meaningless parts. I just sat there waiting for the next one to die and other than being mildly curious about what kind of morbid way they would be offed, I was far from being on the edge of my seat. The first act of the film is by far made the least amount of sense and just seemed like filler to get to the gory stuff and chainsaw scenes. The subplot with the bikers made zero sense. There is absolutely no explanation why the biker chick just suddenly starts pursuing the jeep out of nowhere to rob it. Uh where was her boyfriend and what was he doing? At least in the 2003 film, there were a lot better struggles and chase sequences and at least the setup made more sense. This film's ending was by far the biggest slap in the face of the horror genre. After sitting through 91 minutes of grotesque, sadistic torture the one single remaining character is killed in the most clichéd ways imaginable. This movie deserves to be banned - banned for being stupid beyond belief.
I've been a Texas chainsaw fanatic since i saw the original (when i was
about 8) and all the sequels obviously tried hard (except the one with
Bridget Jones in which was an utter waste of time) but ultimately
failed to be worthy of following up such a classic. the remake was OK,
it looked great and had some quality violence but didn't really hit the
but when i had finished watching this one (a prequel to a remake?) I've got to say i was very impressed, of course it had problems. the odd character didn't seem to have much of a purpose other than to die horribly and scared teenage girls still have that tendency to walk towards the screams of pain rather than leg it, but the grimness and violence of it all was pretty much relentless. there was no crap attempts at humour (other than the 'sherrif' but thats laughing at how out of order he is) and once it gets going it doesn't stop until the abrupt ending.
it looks great, the violence is above and beyond what you expect to see at a cinema (i don't know all the cuts made to the us version but the UK version seems to be about 8mins longer) and it felt like i was watching something that deserved to have 'texas chainsaw massacre' in the title.
if you like horror and gore films you should have a great time, go see.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
There are a lot of things that astonish and disappoint me in this
world...but this ridiculous piece of garbage film getting a 5.9 rating
on the back of a LOT of perfect ratings is one of the most
disappointing and disturbing of all. In fact, I dare say when I was
leaving the theater, the only crime I felt had taken place was fraud!
The cast is essentially the same...two girls (one brunette and one
blonde) and two boys (one brunette and one blonde) are substituted for
the "original" two girls and two boys with the same hair color and the
same general appearance. Insert a couple of bikers, some inane "facts"
about how "Hoyt" became sheriff, "Leatherface" was born and raised, and
so on...and what you have is the original remake remade with a B class
The contradictions in this are appalling. For instance, Leatherface is one bad mutha...he's huge, he's powerful (lifts one guy up off the ground, impaled on a chainsaw), and he causes the ground to shake when he walks. Yet he hides in a car, he can't be seen by a passing vehicle, and his stealth like nature allows for a very stupid and very gory finale that perhaps gives this wretched fraud the only genuine feeling of originality it deserves. Its original in this...but its also very, VERY stupid! This movie is throughly pointless. Hoyt wasn't the actual sheriff...well there's a shocker. Gee, could a man in a dead town be pretending to be a sheriff? Or that Leatherface had birth defects? Or that his mother gave birth to him on the floor of the slaughterhouse as she was dying (yeah, this was one grotesque scene...I can't even imagine someone being proud of producing that scene...let alone choosing to keep it in the movie), and he found a home away from home in the confines of the slaughter house? I'm of course off on a tangent here...but literally there is NOTHING in this movie...nothing at all. Simply put, this is a rehashing of the remade TCM, repackaged as a beginning chapter that simply was not needed. If you want to see Leatherface, do yourself a favor and watch the DVD of the remake- it makes more sense than paying money to go to the theater and watch the same movie for an inflated price!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Rather than focus on what this film is not I will focus on what it is. From what some people will say TCM the beginning, (as the TCM Predecessor has been accused of)are, too predictable, not enough plot.....etc etc etc, all comments from individuals who obviously are watching the wrong watered down horror movies for the wrong reasons. If you want to watch a good old fashion blood and guts horror movie that delivers on the darkness, the atmosphere, the killing, all that makes a horror movie good (and not bad as is lost on most movie reviewers) then see TCM the beginning. It is a throw-back, just as the remake was to a time when the horror movie market was not dominated with slews of PG-13 watered down,"psychological horror" ripped off from real Japanese horror movies and only made worse by US film makers. I for one am glad that movies like TCM the beginning come out now and again to the same Criticisms that should be praised rather than scored, but then again i am of a generation that applauds the blood, and Gratuitous violence and dreary depression or horror, instead of going eeewww thats gross! It beats the heck out of the Japanese rip off PG-13 flicks and it definitely beats most of the 90s horror departure from the excellent horror of the 80s film makers who weren't scared to show blood, guts, nudity etc. That is just my general overview if you are the type of person who wishes to see a huge hulking serial killer demolish people, rather than some little bug eyed kid, or old man with a fisherman's hook then by all means see TCM the beginning, otherwise stay home and complain about the lack of all elements that have ruined most horror films over the past decade.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
There is an idiom about the way a human being feels painwhen a surge
comes, it makes a brief period of time, sometimes only a matter of
seconds, feel like an unbearable eternity. Sometimes situations like a
pulled muscle or a banged kneecap are hard to endure without just a
minor yelp of protest.
The same idiom can be applied to "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning," a film that runs 84 minutes, but is packed with so much gratuitous meat, gore, slime, urine, drool, grime, screaming, agony, sadism, misogyny, and outright misanthropy that it feels like 10 hours 10 long, extremely unpleasant hours (and that's putting it generously). This is the most uncomfortable 10 hours (I mean 84 minutes, sure...) I've ever spent in a darkened theater. "The Beginning" is not only a repulsive film within the horror genre (which has been on a rapid downhill slide some are calling a "renaissance")it could very well be the worst film I've ever had to misfortune to waste my cash on. Period. By the time the credits roll, you'll officially know how Marsellus Wallace felt in the basement of that pawn shop.
I have seen many horror films in my quarter-century on this earth, from early black-and-white classics, '60s kitsch, gritty '70s realism (including Tobe Hooper's original "Chainsaw"), '80s slashers, '90s badness, and a healthy dose of uber-gory European selections from the likes of Fulci, Argento, Pasolini, Deodato, Buttgereit, etc. I'm far from a prude when it comes to cinematic violence, and it takes a lot to offend my otherwise salivating horror sensibility But "The Beginning" is absolutely wretcheda rock-bottom low in horror and film in general. If ever there was a case where I would put my stamp of approval on the protest, censorship, banning, or outright incineration of a film into the stratosphere so that it may never be viewed by human eyesand I am usually against such thingsthis would be it.
This is a film that produces zero scares, but an overflow of disgusting, artless imagery wrongly assumed to BE scary. Its villains are grotesque, unfunny inbred sickos, and its 'heroes' (including 2 guys who resemble Christopher Atkins and Robby Benson, and their girlfriends, with less definition than their Gap-model looks) exist only to have all manner of beating, torture, and mutilation inflicted upon them. Chainsaws and other sharp implements are plunged into flesh in gory close-up. The Vietnam War is cynically exploited to analogize two characters "coming of age" and "becoming men" while suffering the torments of the savage Hewitt clan (also given an un-ironic layer in R. Lee Ermey's war veteranship). In a slasher film where the overriding intentions appeal only to the basest, most reprehensible urges in man, trying to infuse "commentary" into the proceedings comes off as profoundly as a monkey reaching for guano.
Like so many low-budget horrors of the 1950s-'70s, the title of "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre" was a misnomer. The film featured a handful of deaths, only one of which was committed with the titular weapon (and, even then, only shown a few drops of blood); the movie was an absurd comedy of sorts, shrouded in a gritty, documentary-style realism that fueled the terror brewing beneath. There's a good word: "terror." Hooper's 1974 original is, as others before me have said, brilliant for what it doesn't show; it created a terrifying atmosphere and utilized locations and techniques that made the events seem very real. By comparison, the 2003 remake was slick, overproduced, and took the carnage of the title quite literally, offering little more than a plot less torture show, and "Beginning" takes that nihilism to a whole new level.
This time around, it's the subtitle that's misleading, as any insight into Leatherface (oh, excuse me"Thomas Hewitt")'s madness is limited to a gratuitous shock-prologue and vague flash-cuts over the opening credits. "The Beginning" then dives into a story we've all seen too many times before. To those who have seen the 2003 version: it's the same thing. And to those who haven't, it can be summed up as simply as: 2 young couples relentlessly tortured for 84 minutes by a family of cackling psychopaths.
Seriously, that's all there is. It's a nihilistic, grueling, and utterly unredeemable excuse for inflicting pain under the banner of "horror," when it is really anything but. (If Michael Bay's Platinum Dunes company has proved anything to the world, it's that he hasn't the foggiest idea how to scare people.) Horror's recent shift toward hard-R films where dismemberment and gore are the order of the day ("The Devil's Rejects," "Hostel," etc.) has been a thorn in my side as of latenot that I have any problem with these elements of horror, but that few filmmakers know how to back up their excesses with a good, scary story. The underrated "Wolf Creek" is as grimif not morethan "TCM: The Beginning," but at least gives us a trio of realistic, likable characters whose side we are squarely on, counterbalancing the actions of the psycho terrorizing them; evil is not vanquished, but, at the end, there is a faint sense of hope regardless. "The Beginning," in all its proudly repulsive glory, gives us villains who aren't served a lick of justice, and heroes who, by the insulting, sick-joke climax, have all met with the service end of Tommy Hewitt's 'saw.
It's not an ironic sort of injusticeit's merely depressing and infuriating. 'Irony,' in this case, would be knowing that "High Tension" was threatened with an NC-17 while this geek show passed through the ever-astute MPAA with an easy R. "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning" shook my soul with ragea truly vile, worthless bit of cinema with no redeeming qualities. If ever there's been a reason to abort a worn-out franchise, this is definitely it.
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