The last three movies I’ve see in the theater (“Skyfall,” “Les Miserables,” and “Django Unchained”) all have a certain amount of awards-worthiness. This week’s new release probably doesn’t. And yet, there’s that part of me that thinks I will be there ready to go when that familiar sound of the chainsaw starts roaring despite certain misgivings.
“Texas Chainsaw 3D”
The original 1974 film “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” is a bona fide classic, not just of horror films but American cinema. It spawned a couple sequels, a remake and a prequel to the remake. Now, almost 40 years later, we are given this stand-alone film — and in 3D!
If you’ve done your homework, you’ll know that I am pretty tired of remakes and sequels even though I can’t help myself from seeing them. It’s a disease. You also may know that I have problems with 3D. T.J.’s rules on 3D: Enhance the experience or serve the story. Bonus points if you shoot your movie with 3D technology, demerits for rendering your movie in 3D after filming. Anything else is just a gimmick.
This film, supposedly, picks up after the original film and follows Heather (Alexandra Daddario from TV’s “Parenthood”) as she learns she was adopted. She goes off to claim her inheritance and soon discovers Leatherface is her cousin. Mayhem ensues.
Here’s what’s cool about this film that might make it really worth seeing: actors from some of the previous “Chainsaw” films are in this movie! Gunnar Hansen, the original Leatherface, not only gets a role, but footage of him from the first film is used. Marilyn Burns, the original “final girl”; Bill Moseley, “Chop-Top” in TCM2; and John Dugan as Grandpa all make appearances. Even more get to show up from the old footage.
Taking over the all-important role of Leatherface is Dan Yeager. He’s big, but not muscle big like our most recent Leatherface, Andrew Bryniarski.
Other than that, there’s nobody famous in the movie and that’s how it should be. If you put famous people in a movie like this you start expecting them to survive and that’s just not how these things should go.
T.J.’s Pick of the Week:
I’m still pretty bummed out that “Hitchcock” hasn’t made it here yet. Like “Psycho,” Tobe Hooper’s original ‘TCM’ was loosely based on serial killer Ed Gein. “Texas Chainsaw 3D” will have to do for now.
According to the schedule for Friday, Jan. 4, only the 3D version will be showing at Yakima Cinema. So remember to bring an extra $2.