Thursday, May 23, 2013

Review 163: "Texas Chainsaw (2013)"

"Do your thing, Cuz."

Time Less Horror

      I am still relatively new to the horror genre and the Texas Chainsaw series is still one of the series I do know some stuff about but have never actually seen anything of. My closest thing to a Texas Chainsaw movie I had seen before this one was the Angry Video Game Nerd review of the game and a review of Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning. And after hearing about all the lovely things critics had to say about this movie, of course I was excited for it to be my introduction to the series. Sigh. This film is meant to be a direct sequel to the original 1974 film. Directed by John Luessenhop (Takers) and written by Adam Marcus (Jason Goes to Hell), Debra Sullivan (Conspiracy) and Kirsten Elms (Banshee), the film follows Heather (Alexandra Daddario, White Collar), who learns that the family she was raised by is not who they say they are and that her real family left her a house down in Texas. She takes along best friend Nikki (Tania Raymonde, Lost), boyfriend Ryan (Trey Songz, Preacher's Kid) and some other people whose names I can't remember. There, she finds Leatherface (Dan Yeager, Metal Heads), who attempts to kill her and all her friends, as well as get revenge on the town's murderous Mayor Hartman (Paul Rae, True Grit), all while the town's Sheriff Hooper (Thom Barry, Cold Case) does stuff.

Who needs pants in a horror film?
Nothing to Fear

      To say that Texas Chainsaw has a paper-thin plot is an insult to paper. The film is structured in a very weird way. The films opening rushes through the story. It's hopes that you've seen the original films and if you have then just try to figure out way the opening is. Which you be easier if the direction didn't feel like some gave a 5-year old a camera and just used that as the film. It's odd really. The film is rated-R, though it's never used well, just for some mindless gore. But the film still feels like it's aimed at 13-year olds. The film acts like it has ADD, constantly moving as fast as it can from one story point to another, all so it can get to Leatherface chopping people up faster. The scene where Heather finds out her parents aren't her parents is done almost laughably quick. We don't see anything other than her shock and her parents crappiness. And they are never mentioned again, save for a throwaway joke in the end. The whole film is just so lame and generic. Literally a donkey could make a movie with this level of creativity, if not a little more. Sure this movie was never going to be good, but could it at least no be this bad?

40 is the New 20

      It also doesn't help that the film is filled with terrible plot holes, and not the fun to make fun of kind either. Heather, who is played by the 27-year old Daddario, is supposedly born in 1974, at the end of the first movie. This film supposedly takes place in 2012. That would make her character 39-years old. Yeah, I don't buy that. It's pointless too. To fit her age, the movie could have taken place in the late 90s, early 2000s. The film even fits that time period, if not earlier, except they throw in an incredibly pointless scene in which a cop uses his iPhone. Which also begs the classic question of why the characters never call the police, but whatever. The cast is mostly bad, but Daddario and Barry are good and make it at least tolerable. The film  abides but awful horror movie rules. At one point, Heather shirt mysterious get unbuttoned  showing that she has no bra on, but thankfully  despite all the fighting she does, her shirt always covers her breasts. Thank magic modesty shirts! 

Yup. Totally 40-years old. Totally.
The Verdict

      I guess I just don't know who the audience for Texas Chainsaw is. It's too stupid and lame for the hardcore fans. It's R-rated and more importantly too dull for teenagers. It's certainly not for me or other critics. I theorize that the movie was made for one group and one group only: rocks. So, if you are a rock, you may enjoy this movie. If you are anything else, just forget this film exist. Though, you probably already have. Texas Chainsaw (2013) gets 1 and a half stars out of 6.

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