- Avengers; Age of Ultron
How many different ways can teenagers be hacked up by a chainsaw? Not that many.
Directed by Jonathan Liebesman, who you may not recognize as having directed the tooth fairy horror Darkness Falls in 2003, recycles the other Massacre movies in this prequel. Taylor Handley and Matthew Bomer play two brothers, Dean and Eric, who have different views on the war–Vietnam, not Iraq, although this movie could have easily been set in 2006 rather than 1969. While Dean is a supporter of draft dodgers and hopes to become one, Eric plans on taking a second tour of duty in Vietnam. But, in lieu of discussing the war and an American’s duty, the two brothers take their women across Texas on a road trip. Never mind some of the faulty logic here; it’s a set up anyway. The brothers could have easily been driving to the store for what happens next. In true horror fashion, the group is scared of bikers, gets into an accident, and taken hostage by a sheriff, who happens to be the uncle of the young Leatherface Hollywood has come to know. One of the young girls, Chrissie played by Jordana Brewster, who was thrown from the car is the sole ray of hope in the scenario.
But, before she is motivated to help, there is gore of the standard proportions. After all, a chainsaw is in the movie title. However, it’s all been seen and done before. R. Lee Ermey’s sheriff is spookier than most of the standard cutting scenes and provides the only real tension. All in all, this prequel is a misstep that neither fully uncovers the mystery of Leatherface nor shows any new tricks. Take a note from Hollywood and rent the original. They did after all think it was quality enough to build a franchise on it.
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