At some point in life, everyone will have at least one moment that makes them geek the hell out and feel like they are a child again. That moment happened to me Thursday night. I got a wonderful opportunity to catch the premiere of Texas Chainsaw 3D, the anticipated sequel to THE ORIGINAL 1974 classic The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. As if that wasn’t exciting enough for me, we also found out that the actress Marilyn Burns–who played surviving victim Sally in the original–would be attending the screening and signing autographs. Suddenly I all sense went out the window and I felt like I was five again. I may have acted a bit like it too because in that moment all I could do was jump and clap.
Now, I warned you guys I am a huge Horror nerd, I have been pretty much my entire life since the moment I was about four and my dad left on the film Maniac in his office and I snuck in to watch. Both of my parents were fans of the genre so once they realized I was too and understood that they were just movies, they exposed me to the real classics. I was five when I first sat down to watch The Texas Chainsaw Massacre–well I started off sitting down, by the last 13 minutes of the film I was literally jumping up and down on the couch despite my mother’s demands screaming for Sally to make it. She did, and I secretly like to think still that I helped in that due to my support.
And fast forward to this past Thursday, and here Miss Marilyn was in front of me. I’d also seen her in the film Eaten Alive (1977), which wasn’t a classic but was about guy feeding people who pissed him off to his pet alligator and still held a weird place in my heart because it was one of the films I’d watched alone with my mom as a kid. Considering I’m not an only child, I didn’t get a lot of alone time or peaceful alone time with her at that so I cherish every moment with her that I did.
Thankfully by the time we got to the line for our meet/greet we had beaten most of the crowd; we made it to the front of the line and I was able to go first and find my words without looking like a weirdo. Marilyn was super nice, and then told me that my shirt was the coolest she had seen. Then I got giddy again and I think I spoke English back to her but things were kind of a blur at that point. I was handed my autograph and gained access into the theater.
For those wondering on the premise of this particular addition, we are introduced to a young lady named Heather who discovers she is adopted and decides to travel to Texas with a group of friends to collect her inheritance from her birth family–whom, you guessed it, turns out to be the Sawyer family. Now for the politically incorrect in the Horror world, the Sawyers were the original family of Leatherface–NOT the Hewitt’s that were introduced in the 2003 Jessica Biel remake.
I give this film props first for opening up with a cool montage of the original film, and for mixing in cameos from the likes of Marilyn Burns, Bill Moseley and the original Leatherface himself Gunnar Hansen. But from there, that’s about all the good things I have to say about this version.
I’m still trying to figure out as to why this film was even dubbed as “3D”, because during the entire film there was maybe about twice a chainsaw was thrown at me. And I think some guy spit his teeth out on my right cheek, but I don’t remember his name.
I’ve said this before, but one of my pet peeves in a film from a writing standpoint is lack of character development–which is what most films (especially Horror today) suffers from. So much attention was being focused on the main character and the Sawyers, not much was built around the friends. I don’t know about everyone else in the theater, but when so and so died I didn’t skip a beat in eating my popcorn.
Another pet peeve is seeing holes in the plot that make no sense. Although this film is a direct sequel to the original film, it is set to take place in the present world today. Trey Songz’ Two Reasons is playing (shameless plug), but all you people are dressed to party like it’s 1979 and driving a jalopy a.k.a old beat up 70s station wagon of sorts? Oh okay. WHAT YEAR IS THIS?? No one had a cell phone either, which is non-acceptable and hard to believe in today’s young generation. Maybe this girl was just that poor that all her and her friends could afford was an old van and half pieces of clothing, but everyone knows Cricket has good deals on phones for cheap. Get a flip girl.
Something else that made no sense was a scene where Leatherface is going HAM with his chainsaw in tow and a local carnival. In Texas. Don’t none of you people have a CHL? I’m not buying it.
I’m also not buying the need with some of these Horror remakes/sequels/prequels today to humanize the classic villians. What?? They were scary in the beginning because no one really knew why they were the way they were, or why they chose to become the monsters they chose to be. Everything is scarier when their is no true motive.
With all that said, all in all it wasn’t the worst of the Chainsaw series, but it definitely wasn’t the best. As in most cases, the original still wins but dare I say the 2003 remake puts up a good fight as well? Yeah, I dare.