TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE
Starring: Elsie Fisher, Sarah Yarkin, Jacob Latimore, Nell Hudson, Moe Dunford, Olwen Floéré, and Mark Burnham
Director: David Blue Garcia
Although Texas Chainsaw Massacre has its moments, there’s nothing new or inventive here. In fact, that’s what this film will likely be remembered for: small moments, particularly moments of brutality. There are some vicious kills (and a chaotic score by Colin Stetson only enhances them), but besides that, it all feels unoriginal. The cast doesn’t elevate the material given, and the material given often feels like a rip-off of Halloween (2018). Unlike Laurie Strode in that film, this same story could’ve been told without the re-emergence of Sally (Olwen Fouere), and to be honest, the film would’ve been better off for it.
Texas Chainsaw Massacre is the latest entry and legacy sequel to the original 1974 classic. That being said, much like the sequels it’s retconning, this film offers very little in terms of substance or memorability. Sure, it’s got some good gore, but this could have been a generic slasher. It didn’t need to have Leatherface (Mark Burnham) as the killer or bring back Sally (Olwen Fouere) from the original. Both are wasted in this, and everything that made the original stand out is gone in this latest iteration. Again, the gore is great, but there’s not much else here.
While the idea of a new Texas Chainsaw Massacre could have worked as a way to modernize Leatherface for a new generation, it falls short in terms of story and performances. There are some weak subplots in the film that just don’t work, dragging the movie’s overall potential down. What starts as a promising new take on the gory horror classic quickly becomes a paint-by-numbers slasher flick. If all you’re looking for is a blood bath, then this flick is for you. But, at this point, it may be time for Leatherface to just put the chainsaw away.