The Texas Chain Saw Massacre
Who will survive and what will be left of them?
En route to visit their grandfather's grave (which has apparently been ritualistically desecrated), five teenagers drive past a slaughterhouse, pick up (and quickly drop) a sinister hitch-hiker, eat some delicious home-cured meat at a roadside gas station, before ending up at the old family home... where they're plunged into a never-ending nightmare as they meet a family of cannibals who more than make up in power tools what they lack in social skills...
Listen, and understand. This movie is out there. It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead.
The very essence of terror, and the best way to get a jump start on any Halloween-inspired marathon... on Labor Day weekend. Goodbye summer, helloooo two months of horror.
You don't want to go fooling around other folks' property. If some folks don't like it... they don't mind showing you.
It's been a few years since I watched this, but John Larroquette's voice over narration still gave me a small disturbing chill. It always reminds me of the first time I saw the film and having that feeling that "maybe I shouldn't be watching this..." I don't remember my age at the time, but do remember the film feeling like it was trying to do permanent damage to my psyche.
The movie being made on a shoestring budget actually works in it's favor as the gritty raw visuals gives you the feeling that…
"It's all right for you middle-class cineastes to see this film, but what would happen if a factory worker in Manchester happened to see it?"
James Ferman, former head of the BBFC, speaking at the London Film Festival.
Who knew that a film that spends half it's running time chronicling a woman constantly screaming could be so good?
I never noticed before that, when Kirk and Pam are approaching the house and notice a concealed graveyard of rusting cars, at least half are VW bugs. While this probably has more to do with what cars were available to the production, it did get me thinking about how The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is the ultimate red state/blue state, urban/rural horror movie. It's the older generations keeping up the traditions of family and an honest day's work at the slaughterhouse at the expense of all those kids in their minivans who need to get a damn haircut. How much of this was intentional is anyone's guess - more than anything, TCM feels like a primal scream, the end result…
Going into this movie, you know people are going to die with gory, horrible, chainsaw inflicted deaths! What makes this movie great is they make you wait for it, building up the tension before a cataclysmic, blooddrenched finale. It begins with the opening sequence and heightens with the insane hitchhiker scene. Damn, this movie was a wild ride. Think i held my breath for the last half an hour of this movie
This movie is a spazz fest and now I have seen it.
While I can't deny that it's primitive-looking photography and jarring scenes of gore and terror rightfully earned it a place in horror history as a classic of the genre, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is an underwhelming experience for me each time I watch it.
Only when the film reaches the fifty minute mark does it even feel as urgent or dangerous as it should, but when it does, it's gloriously intense. If the film had started here, I'm not sure I'd even mind how short it was if it scared me as much as the climactic chase and dinner scenes do. Marilyn Burns, though not the most subtle actress, is impressive here precisely because of how BIG she is. She sells it, and her ferociousness in the final scenes is incredible to watch.
This film is a terrifying classic.
- The dreadful atmosphere aided by the grainy cinematography, the off putting direction, and the ambient score. Absolutely scary.
- The performances by Gunnar Hansen and Marilyn Burns.
- The strange documentary and procedural way Tobe Hooper executes the story.
- That crazy ten minute chase scene of Burns and Leatherface running in the woods, into the house, into the woods again, into the house again, into the woods once again and to a gas station owned by a cannibalistic hillbilly.
- In fact, the second half of the film features some of the scariest and most insane sequences ever put to horror celluloid.
- That final shot was brilliant and haunting.
Yeah I know, what took me so long in seeing this?! But I saw it ok, so quit your bitching!
Laughs were had. And GOOD FUCKING LORD, DOES SHE EVER SHUT UP.
This movie is still pretty effective, due mainly to its low-budget grittiness which makes the film feel like you're watching a home movie. I still think the scene when the main girl is being chased through the pitch black field is terrifying. It reminds me of all of those night games of Capture the Flag I played in the acreage behind my house as a kid.
Todo un clásico del cine de terror. Imprescindible.
A film like this is a must see for fans of the horror genre (which I am typically not, though I am trying to catch up on the films previously decided to be worth watching in the genre). It is both ominous and new; filled with a villain as terrifying as one could be. It also holds many of the elements of a horror film which I typically loathe, and which cannot be ignored. The stupidity of the characters and the acting brought to screen is rather horrendous at times, and at best mediocre. Some of the shots in the film are iconic, and some are truly horrifying, but I would still not recommend this film to anyone not taking a serious look at the history of horror.