Does it really take over four writers to craft a sequel to the classic Texas Chainsaw Massacre?
Remove the 3D.
Weigh it not in your calculations.
Is a literary quartet necessary to weave a tale about a guy in a leather mask carving up young people with a chain saw?
Let’s experiment and do the beats ourselves.
• Good-looking young people arrive at scary place.
• Disregard warnings.
• Titillating nudity.
• Murder One.
• Murders two through 16.
• Desperate Defense.
• Only survivor prevails against menace.
• Sequel teased.
NOW toss in 3D and pat yourself on the back.
In less time than it takes the government to spend 5 billion dollars we’ve outlined a journeyman piece of cinema.
Which brings us to the latest from Lionsgate.
We pick up kind of where we left off in 1974. Back then the good folk of Newt, Texas burned down the home of the murderous Sawyer family.
Fond of wearing leather masks because they are shy about butchering people, this family of sub-human, chain-saw wielding cannibals is seemingly wiped out.
FADE IN on the 2013 version.
Years later, young Heather (Alexandra Daddario) learns she has inherited a Texas estate from a mysterious grandmother. With a group of apple-headed friends, Heather road trips it out to an isolated Victorian mansion.
(You’re way ahead of me here, but stick around.)
And there Heather discovers to her horror….
….a family of Leatherfaces long cut-off from the outside world.
But thanks to Internet access and the University of Phoenix, these particular Sawyers have educated themselves.
They are now armed with razor sharp sarcasm and irony instead of their traditional grisly tools.
WARNING: some of the remarks are more wicked and barbed than anything you’d hear at a barbecue for set designers.
Locked in the house, the young friends must endure non-stop mockery and satire. The weakest crumble and, in a craven bid for acceptance, belittle their own friends as a way to avoid further humiliation.
I understand the theme and its message about intellectual isolation and how it can breed an insecure, almost juvenile, thought process that may result in wounding words.
But I wanted body parts flying around like snowflakes in a Montana blizzard.
I wanted half-naked youth, brutally slain at the moment of peak sexual arousal.
I wanted high decibel screaming, terror-stricken escapes, and seventeen numbered sequels.
Disappointed? Like a stubby man in the NBA.
As a note, Elisa Meri Hansen and Scott B. Hansen were singled out in the credits for special thanks. I would be churlish to do less.
Considering the number of uncredited actors and actresses in this film, I think special thanks are in order for whatever these guys did to garner on-screen kudos.
Three stars out of five for scenes of a girl changing clothes in a car.