In the seventh installment to the Texas Chainsaw Massacre franchise, Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3D tried to connect the events of the first TCM released in 1974 to the present day when the last member of the murderous Sawyer family returns to the site of the bloody massacres to reconnect with her origins.
Heather Miller (Alexandra Daddario, Percy Jackson franchise), is an ordinary store clerk who receives a package on the mail one day, claiming that she is the sole heiress of an old mansion in Texas. Wanting to learn about her roots and settle the matter, she and her friends meet with the lawyer to claim her inheritance. but it would seem that the money and the estate are not all that is left in Heather’s care as an old family secret still resides within the walls of the mansion, and Heather’s arrival to town just seemed to stir up an old can of worms that the townsfolk are dying to keep shut.
Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3D is intended to be the third installment to the reboot of the franchise which started in the 2003 remake produced by Michael Bay and the film’s original director Tobe Hooper and TCM The Beginning, also from the same team. TCM 3D however, is produced by Lions Gate and Nu Image who purchased the rights of the franchise. This story takes place after the events of the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre and discusses what happened after the only survivor Sally escapes from the Sawyers and what happened to the family after their murderous activities were revealed. As such, a montage from Tobe Hooper’s cult classic served as the film’s opening to establish the connection.
I have several issues about this movie. I loved the original film, which I first saw on my Film Appreciation class in college. I loved the reboot in 2003 but I was confused as to what the goal of this movie was. If it was intended as a conclusion to the reboot franchise, should it not have used clips from the 2003 movie rather than the original movie? I think that because there were two more movies after the original TCM, putting this movie right after the original results in a lot of inconsistency. I think that since it was part of the rebooted franchise, it should have been connected to the 2003 movie (which was basically a remake of the original) so that it would make better sense to go in a different direction.
I appreciate the mindless horror aspect of this movie, don’t get me wrong. But somehow, the killings did not pack quite the punch as its predecessors did. It felt more like the fulfillment of an obligation on the part of the filmmakers. There was nothing new in the style used by Leatherface, there was no real moment of pure horror that would make the audiences cringe. There was no proper set up to the scenes, just a lot of cleavage and navel baring on the part of the film’s female cast, a lot of chainsawing and shouting on the part of the requisite hillbillies — everything fell flat in my opinion, a far cry from another recent offering from a rebooted franchise —
Still, I sat through the entire movie, wishing for something spectacular to happen. Unfortunately, it did not — which leads me to the conclusion that the franchise would not have lost anything if this movie did not get made.
All in all, the producers made a killing from this low budget movie as it raked in triple of its budget from the fans loyal to the franchise. It was a passable horror, don’t get me wrong but it was far inferior to its predecessors, even the ones that got made in the 70s. And in this sense, it was one big letdown. Such a great disservice to fans who shelled out good money to see it on the big screen.