Movie Defense Force: Texas Chainsaw Massacre - A Remake Better Than The Original

Jimothy Sterling

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Texas Chainsaw Massacre - A Remake Better Than The Original

Remade horror classics aren't all bad, especially when wacky sociopath sherrifs get involved!

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Goliath100

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Oh Jimmy, what a perfect setup for a bdsm joke, but I'm not sure the escapist let them be. Also, I don't think Yahtzee care much about the original TCM, or wearing a sheriff uniform.
 

SnakeoilSage

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I'm sticking with the original because it more accurately demonstrates the kind of panicked fear that comes from being trapped in a house full of madmen, your friends butchered, and there's no sense of comfort or safety to be found. The remake has its moments, but its attempts to portray the family's madness come across more like tongue-in-cheek, wink at the camera quirkiness, and it never feels as honestly disturbing as watching the old man from the original insist he doesn't like violence, but starts to snicker and smile along with his family as they taunt a woman growing increasingly deranged by their sadism. R. Lee Ermy is putting on a fun role yes, but he's not playing any character we haven't seen him play a dozen times before, so his presence feels more camp than creepy. Ultimately I felt the cannibal family in the remake were just a bunch of assholes, and I was more invested in seeing them get their comeuppance than in feeling disturbed or frightened. And since said comeuppance is never delivered, what we have is an ending that just kinds of peters out into nothing. No resolution or satisfaction. The original ended with the main character barely escaping her captives, and while Leatherface wasn't dispatched it hardly mattered: you were relieved to see her finally escape, you felt as hysterically happy as she did to put the raging chainsaw wielding madman as far away from her as she possibly could, and when your thoughts are entirely preoccupied with escape rather than seeing the main character build some clever trap and spouting a one-liner at her tormenter like he's someone who just cut in front of her at the coffee shop, that's the mark of something truly scary.
 

Kenjitsuka

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Never liked the original, so never considdered this. Guess I'll have to watch it now ;)
 

forlornhope22

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This is the first one of these where I agree with Jim 100% The remake was acted better, shot better, and scripted better. It just couldn't overcome the nostalgia goggles.
 

josh4president

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See, I would agree if it was a movie about Lee Ermey's character, or at the very least had him as the principal antagonist. However, this being a remake of 'Texas Chainsaw Massacre' that is obviously not the case. It's distracting just how entertaining and terrifying Ermey is in the role when the supposed focus isn't meant to be on him - making every moment spent with Leatherface a chore to sit through while we check the time and wait for Mr. Ermey to get back so he can be creepy.

As such I imagine you would much prefer the prequel, which was the sequel to this (because of course it was) where Ermey takes up something akin to 60% of the running time.
 

Casual Shinji

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SnakeoilSage said:
I'm sticking with the original because it more accurately demonstrates the kind of panicked fear that comes from being trapped in a house full of madmen, your friends butchered, and there's no sense of comfort or safety to be found. The remake has its moments, but its attempts to portray the family's madness come across more like tongue-in-cheek, wink at the camera quirkiness, and it never feels as honestly disturbing as watching the old man from the original insist he doesn't like violence, but starts to snicker and smile along with his family as they taunt a woman growing increasingly deranged by their sadism. R. Lee Ermy is putting on a fun role yes, but he's not playing any character we haven't seen him play a dozen times before, so his presence feels more camp than creepy. Ultimately I felt the cannibal family in the remake were just a bunch of assholes, and I was more invested in seeing them get their comeuppance than in feeling disturbed or frightened. And since said comeuppance is never delivered, what we have is an ending that just kinds of peters out into nothing. No resolution or satisfaction. The original ended with the main character barely escaping her captives, and while Leatherface wasn't dispatched it hardly mattered: you were relieved to see her finally escape, you felt as hysterically happy as she did to put the raging chainsaw wielding madman as far away from her as she possibly could, and when your thoughts are entirely preoccupied with escape rather than seeing the main character build some clever trap and spouting a one-liner at her tormenter like he's someone who just cut in front of her at the coffee shop, that's the mark of something truly scary.
Thanks for stopping my incoming rant dead in its tracks with this expertly written post.

Seriously, the original is still one of the most disturbing horror movies ever made. Just the intro credits alone are nightmarish. It was a slasher flick that at the time they wanted to censor due to the terrorizing images, but couldn't because there was no gore at all. Yeah, a horror movie where the fear came from the scene composition, editing, and sound... Crazy, huh?

All the remake cared about was making everything look filthy and icky, because... that's scary, I guess. Throwing in so much gore that the fear of physical harm gets completely nulified. The implied "hook hanging" scene from the original had oodles the force that the gory one in the remake had. Same goes for the twitching corpse.
 

Canadamus Prime

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Jun 17, 2009
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I never saw the original, but this movie was really fucked up. Like if I recall, while the main characters weren't really likable, there was no one outside of the main characters that wasn't completely fucked up.
 

Groverfield

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I really like the Movie Defense forces where Jim's actually trying, and ends up bringing out opinions we never knew we had, or just didn't want to admit.
 

the December King

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I personally have room to like both the original and the new.

You know, I've been under the delusion that Rob Zombie directed this remake. I stand corrected.
 

Kingjackl

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All I know about this film is that it's apparently the only movie Margaret Pomeranz ever walked out on, so that's something. But as with everything, Movie Defence Force made it sound alright.
 

Metalrocks

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still like the original. the remake has indeed its moments that were better like the acting and has also more depth but cant say it was any good.
the funny thing is, when i got my self the original, the guy at the shop accidentally inserted the remake (which was also 3 times more expensive)disc. so i saw the remake for free because after that i returned to the shop to complain that i was given the wrong movie.
 

SnakeoilSage

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Casual Shinji said:
Thanks for stopping my incoming rant dead in its tracks with this expertly written post.

Seriously, the original is still one of the most disturbing horror movies ever made. Just the intro credits alone are nightmarish. It was a slasher flick that at the time they wanted to censor due to the terrorizing images, but couldn't because there was no gore at all. Yeah, a horror movie where the fear came from the scene composition, editing, and sound... Crazy, huh?

All the remake cared about was making everything look filthy and icky, because... that's scary, I guess. Throwing in so much gore that the fear of physical harm gets completely nulified. The implied "hook hanging" scene from the original had oodles the force that the gory one in the remake had. Same goes for the twitching corpse.
When Leatherface struck that guy in the head with a hammer? That had me on edge. That's how a lethal blow to the skull might actually play out, so it horrified me to see it. The remake is like "look at the blood! It's so bloody! Isn't that scary?" And then R. Lee Ermy shouts at people.
 

Casual Shinji

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SnakeoilSage said:
When Leatherface struck that guy in the head with a hammer? That had me on edge. That's how a lethal blow to the skull might actually play out, so it horrified me to see it. The remake is like "look at the blood! It's so bloody! Isn't that scary?" And then R. Lee Ermy shouts at people.
It's also the crude velocity with which it occurs. No theatrics, no slow-mo, just instant physical trauma.

And since you mentioned the "hammer" scene, what comes right after is probably the scariest scene in the history of cinema (at least to me). The girlfriend on the swingset outside slowly walks up to the house, shot in the most hair raising angle. She enters, walks up stairs and opens the door to the room covered in feathers, with the couch made out of bones, and the panicked clucks of a chicken in the background. It so horrifyingly brings across that this girl just unwittingly trespassed into the demon's lair, and she becomes aware if it that very instant. Unfortunately, too late.
 

Verlander

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100% Disagree. One of the things that sticks with me most about the original is the atmosphere, hot and sweaty, with the cacophonous music.. where as the remake was design by committee. "Remember in the original, the dude in the car started cutting people? Let's have our one be a woman who shoots herself!" If that kind of overkill wasn't enough, everything looked measured to perfection... even the dirt looked like it was regulation thick.

The original is flawed, but is ultimately greater as a result of a restricted budget.
 

LordMonty

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This movie like Dawn of the Dead(remake) is a differnet film from the original and in being a newer film makes it easier to watch. Time is a cruel mistress to almost everything and we as movie watchers expect more now(unless you like Sharknado then I judge you for not demanding a lot more) both the remakes I point to are better films in almost every part of film craft.

But this in no way should mean you bin the originals as they are very different films made with different ideas and senseabilities of another era, I admit to liking the new versions more, they're more engaging for the full run but that said I do watch in both cases the originals from time to time with mates when the mood takes us.
 

BillyBlackSheep

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Please, please, please, please do an MDF on Texas Chainsaw Massacre 4 at some point. I've always believed it was, faint praise, the best of the sequels. It's got a dirty-style Lynchian vibe to it that feels more like diving into true madness than the rest of them.
 

Lono Shrugged

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I don't really agree with the fact Jim likes this. But that's cool, I have often said that Jim is one of the few reviewers I can disagree with but still totally get where he is coming from and know from that if I will appreciate the taste he means. (Deadly Premonition)

I think the New Dawn Of The Dead is a million times better than the old one. Again tonally that original film was all over the place, meandering with few interesting characters. (Though a nicely diverse cast) and not the greatest zombie effects. The new one was terrifying in it's ferocity. (Not just the speed, these fuckers are hungry!) It's well drawn and interesting cast that all had a part to play and pretty sweet action scenes.

I would totally get if anyone disagreed with me. But the thing about remakes is that if they are done right they can iron out a lot of the problems with older movies. I love me some old movies but a lot of the 70's films can drag and quite a few have dodgy acting. Those things go out of style and for the current generation it's a bit boring to be fair. It does not take away the fact the old film exists, was a classic for it's time and should be watched. But sometimes it's nice to hear someone else tell the same story a different way.
 

daxterx2005

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This movie rules, so I'm on your side Jim.
But god help you if you defend the remake prequel...that movie is garbage.