Two siblings and three of their friends en route to visit their grandfather's grave in Texas fall victim to a family of cannibalistic psychopaths.

Director:

Tobe Hooper

Writers:

Kim Henkel (screenplay by), Tobe Hooper (screenplay by) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
1,737 ( 62)
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Marilyn Burns ... Sally
Allen Danziger ... Jerry
Paul A. Partain ... Franklin
William Vail ... Kirk
Teri McMinn ... Pam
Edwin Neal ... Hitchhiker
Jim Siedow ... Old Man
Gunnar Hansen ... Leatherface
John Dugan ... Grandfather
Robert Courtin Robert Courtin ... Window Washer
William Creamer William Creamer ... Bearded Man
John Henry Faulk ... Storyteller
Jerry Green Jerry Green ... Cowboy
Ed Guinn ... Cattle Truck Driver
Joe Bill Hogan Joe Bill Hogan ... Drunk
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Storyline

En route to visit their grandfather's grave (which has apparently been ritualistically desecrated), five teenagers drive past a slaughterhouse, pick up (and quickly drop) a sinister hitch-hiker, eat some delicious home-cured meat at a roadside gas station, before ending up at the old family home... where they're plunged into a never-ending nightmare as they meet a family of cannibals who more than make up in power tools what they lack in social skills... Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The idyllic summer's day that became a nightmare of fear and blood... [UK Video] See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Gunnar Hansen auditioned, he wasn't told much about the character he would be playing, but he was called in to meet with Tobe Hooper and Daniel Pearl. Hooper described the film and Leatherface as a character in great detail. He asked Hansen if he was violent or crazy, to which the actor replied no. He asked Hansen if he could do the part, to which the actor replied with, "Oh, sure. No problem." As soon as Hansen signed his contract, Hooper told him he wanted to hire him as soon as he met him. See more »

Goofs

The blood the hitchhiker smears on the van is gone in the long shot a few seconds later. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: The film which you are about to see is an account of the tragedy which befell a group of five youths, in particular Sally Hardesty and her invalid brother, Franklin. It is all the more tragic in that they were young. But, had they lived very, very long lives, they could not have expected nor would they have wished to see as much of the mad and macabre as they were to see that day. For them an idyllic summer afternoon drive became a nightmare. The events of that day were to lead to ...
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Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: The film which you are about to see is an account of the tragedy which befell a group of five youths, in particular Sally Hardesty and her invalid brother, Franklin. It is all the more tragic in that they were young. But, had they lived very, very long lives, they could not have expected nor would they have wished to see as much of the mad and macabre as they were to see that day. For them an idyllic summer afternoon drive became a nightmare.

The events of that day were to lead to the discovery of one of the most bizarre crimes in the annals of American history, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.

AUGUST 18, 1973 See more »

Alternate Versions

A scene was filmed but cut in which Pam and Kirk come across a campground outside the slaughterhouse where people were murdered, and Kirk finds a pocket-watch nailed to a tree. A scene was cut that explained one of the film's continutity errors: During the dinner scene, Leatherface gets up, goes into his bedroom, and fixes up his mask with makeup. In the original cut of the film, there was a closeup shot of Hitchhiker after he's hit by the mac-truck. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Zombie Brigade (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

Feria de las Flores
Los Cyclones
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User Reviews

 
The one... the only... The Texas Chainsaw Massacre!
16 May 2003 | by mister_pigSee all my reviews

Let me begin by saying that there are precious few movies that can actually scare the crap out of you, and this is one of them. The tension that this movie generates is overwhelming at times, and if you watch it with someone who's never seen it before, be sure to keep your eye on them. You'll probably notice a look of disbelief on their unsuspecting face.

Anyone who doesn't like being scared will end up being unable to finish this movie. People who have a taste for the brutally bizarre will probably hit play again after the credits roll. In light of all this, I must also say that in some respects, TCM's bark is much worse than it's bite. Being banned in so many countries for so long, and having a title that includes the phrase 'Chainsaw Massacre', has seemingly led many people to believe that there is an undue amount of gore in it. However, there simply isn't. Gore is not where the scares are in this one. The scares come from the absolutely brutal and bizarre scenarios that befall poor Sally Hardesty.

In closing, I'd also like to go out on a limb and make the following grandiose statement: TCM is the greatest horror film of all time! Not bad for Tobe Hoopers' first effort.


109 of 147 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 October 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Headcheese See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$300,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$30,859,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$30,860,378
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Vortex See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (new longer Version) | (Unrated Edition)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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