HOLLYWOOD—Yeah, the notion of remaking a classic, with a direct sequel to the classic is starting to annoy me quite a bit America. Why? The films are not clicking the same way that the filmmakers are expecting them to. I mean we had “Halloween,” three versions at this point 1978 (the original), 2007 (the remake) and then the 2018 (the remake/sequel). Do you see where the confusion lies? Well, after “Scream” rebirthed its franchise and horror at the box-office last month, we have another iconic villain coming back to the screen in Leatherface.
That’s right America, before Michael Myers, Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees there was Leatherface; a maniac who happens to be a member of a family of cannibals, who wields a chainsaw. A knife is scary, but a chainsaw is scarier because it can cut thru almost anything people. “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” is a direct sequel to Tobe Hooper’s 1974 classic. So that is nearly 50 years later, not quite the 40 years of David Gordon Green’s 2018 “Halloween.”
So let me do the math here: that mean’s Leatherface would have to be at least in his 70s or 80s at most. Hmm, ponder on that people, really ponder on that people. Michael Myers was about 60, Leatherface at 70 wielding a chainsaw the way he does in this flick and running without missing a beat does NOT seem plausible to say the least America. That was the one thing that drove me bonkers about this movie. There was absolutely no way you can buy what is being sold by the filmmakers here. Hmmm, a 70 year-old chases millennials and Gen Z members with a chainsaw? And that party bus scene. C’mon, it’s like 20 people and one person with a chainsaw, they could have overpowered him.
The plot involves a group of twentysomethings who venture into the desolate town of Harlow, where practically no one lives. It is a ghost town and that should have been the first sign for our protagonists to get out of town ASAP. Nope, they want to build a business empire and that means anyone left in town (there’s Leatherface and his caretaker), who is deftly ill. Let’s just say things go horribly wrong and it ticks Leatherface off, who has been dormant all these years. It is literally a slasher-fest with little story after that.
The deaths are beyond gruesome, bloody and tough to watch. Not sure if that was the goal of director, but it’s too much. I don’t’ want to squirm watching a horror movie. Unnerving that is fine, but to the point where I don’t even want to see what is going on should say something America. The best part of the flick is Elsie Fisher who portrays Lila, the little sister of the female lead’s Melody (Sarah Yarkin). She brings a level of heart and awareness to the movie that connects with the audience.
What does that mean? She knows something is wrong and when the flick kicks into the third act, where we see the return of sole survivor Sally Hardesty from the 1974 its gets intriguing, but then the movie ends. The ending is one that will indeed harken back to the original with a twist. Hardesty, who is played by Olwen Fouere, lacks the development of character. All the audience knows is Sally wants to settle a score with Leatherface, she was tortured like Laurie Strode, but we got to see Laurie’s plight, not Sally’s.
She wants her revenge, but we really don’t know what this woman has been doing the past 50 years. It’s a missed opportunity for a narrative point, not to mention the fact that the movie cannot travel down the same path of the 2018 flick “Halloween” without looking like they completely stole the idea, which if they did I would have said the same thing people. “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” attempted to rebirth new life in an iconic villain, but all the audience got was the same ole stale story.