It’s clear as day that the producers of “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” noticed David Gordon Green’s 2018 reboot of “Halloween” and thought they might accomplish the identical form of a comeback for Leatherface. As soon as once more, there’s a sequel that skips all of the earlier movies and remakes however the first film, and it’s designed to heart the story of a survivor. In this case, it’s Sally Hardesty (Olwen Fouéré, changing Marilyn Burns, who handed in 2014), the one one that made it out alive in Tobe Hooper’s earth-shaking unique. She’s been looking for the creature who killed her mates for years, and the Netflix Authentic units them towards one another. Sorta. Simply barely. Everything about David Blue Garcia’s movie is “sorta simply barely” (aside from the gore, which is spectacular). It’s a kind of task that’s clearly been via the wringer when it comes to manufacturing—there have been tales of a changed directing workforce and horrible take a look at screenings—and but it feels prefer it was doomed from the start. It’s a startling misfire, a film that basically fails at nearly every part it’s attempting to do. Leatherface deserves higher.
Imagine it or not, “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” is one other cautionary story about gentrification. (I’m not kidding.) Melody (Sarah Yarkin), her sister Lila (Elsie Fisher), and their good friend Dante (Jacob Latimore) have come to the center of nowhere in Harlow, Texas to renovate the small city. They’re even bringing in a bus of influencers to see the area. (The bus could as properly say “Chainsaw Victims” on the aspect.) Once they arrive, they run into a speedy battle with a homeowner (Alice Krige) who insists that she’s not leaving. It seems that she’s the Norma Bates of this case, and when she’s pressured from her residence, her son Leatherface (Mark Burnham) goes on a rampage.
“Texas Chainsaw Massacre” begins with promise. Casting Leatherface as a bogeyman within the heartland of Texas, a determine who evokes not solely worry but a weird fan base who purchase corkscrews with chainsaws on them is an intelligent thought … that goes nowhere. “TCM” is continually taking part in this extremely irritating recreation—bringing one thing up after which nearly refusing to do something with it. For instance, Lila is a survivor of a college capturing, however, this simply finally ends up feeling exploitative as a substitute of insight. The concept of metropolis folks who don’t perceive what waits for them after they go away the security of their house is frequent in horror and was partially outlined by Hooper’s movie, however, this one provides nothing new. After which when it begins to play with social media in a single morbidly humorous scene, it throws that concept away too. Everything is shallow in a movie that runs beneath 80 minutes without credit but feels twice as long.
And that lack of narrative depth can be effective if “TCM” is as efficient as a horror film. It’s not. The gore is plentiful, however, the staging and execution of the violence is uninspired. There’s no stress, no suspense, no characters to care about. I feel the issue is that the primary film is so efficient in its simplicity—a imaginative and prescient of bizarre individuals plunged into Hell—that filmmakers since have thought that copying that straightforward template is simple. It’s not. Imbuing such a primary premise with intense, unrelenting terror takes a sure form of instinctual craftsmanship that Hooper had. Most of his followers haven’t been so blessed with expertise.
Though Garcia and his collaborators aren’t actually attempting for that brutal simplicity both, continuously cluttering their panorama with half-baked concepts. Worst of all is how forgettable Sally’s arc turns into, a half-assed model of the Laurie Strode vengeance narrative from Inexperienced’s “Halloween” film. That flick additionally discarded years of sequels to take a franchise again to its roots. “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” makes an attempt at the identical factor and will get so misplaced on the best way residence.
On Netflix right this moment.