Movie Review – Texas Chainsaw (2013)

Texas Chainsaw 3D
Directed by John Luessenhop
Courtesy of Lionsgate
Release Date: May 14, 2013


TEXAS CHAINSAW 3D is one of those films that stirs up a lot of controversy among genre fans. Not because it’s particularly brutal or gory, but because of how it changes the original mythology of its preceding film(s). True, it does add to the existing mythology…but this film also changes the perception of how we should view the Sawyer family. This is both a good and bad thing. But regardless of whether you agree with that or not, this film is a lot of fun.

If you are not familiar with TEXAS CHAINSAW 3D, here is the plot synopsis courtesy of Lionsgate:

TEXAS CHAINSAW 3D continues the legendary story of the homicidal Sawyer family, picking up where Tobe Hooper’s 1974 horror classic left off in Newt, Texas, where for decades people went missing without a trace. Decades later and hundreds of miles away from the original massacre, a young woman named Heather learns that she has inherited a Texas estate from a grandmother she never knew she had. After embarking on a road trip with friends to uncover her roots, she finds she is the sole owner of a lavish, isolated Victorian mansion. But her newfound wealth comes with a price as she stumbles upon a horror that awaits her in the mansion’s cellars…

I saw the original TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE when I was about 14. Interestingly enough, I was living in the Texas panhandle at the time, so the film struck a chord with me. I’ve been a big-time fan ever since and have even dressed up as Leatherface on a couple of occasions (holiday-wise, of course…not just for my own entertainment).

When I first watched TEXAS CHAINSAW 3D, I was a little unsure of how I felt. I enjoyed the film as a whole…but it really changes the perspective on how we should look at the Sawyer family. The original movie makes them out to be vicious, psychotic cannibals…but this film changes that view and gives a more, well, human side to them.

It is this humanism that causes all the debate. Gore-hounds and die-hard fans scream that this film should have nothing to do with the original and that it should not be added to the TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE canon. Others feel that it is a perfect addition to the mythology and gives a new and unique take on the homicidal family.

In the end, I decided that I enjoyed TEXAS CHAINSAW 3D, and I actually like how they shifted our perceptions of the Sawyers. It’s nice to see a good, gory flick like this one that has a bit of heart. Speaking of gore, though, I have to admit that some of it is my sole reason of complaint: they used CG for a bit of it that could have been monumentally awesome if it had been done with practical effects.

But don’t let that dissuade you from checking out this film. I recommend giving it a look, if for any reason to see if you agree or disagree with the abstract changes they made. If you decide to do so, stop back here and let us know what you think. This could make a great discussion.


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