|Title:||The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2|
|03.28.14||Internet||This Screening is part of event: The Texas Chainsaw Marathon|
This reminded me a bit of Rambo: First Blood Part 2 in that the first film felt definitively seventies and the sequel couldn't be more eighties. Where the original was an indie production of a dozen people out on their own in the Round Rock summer heat, this is a full on Cannon Golan/Globus buy-the-soundtrack popcorn fest. Half of it takes place in some underground carnival of dust and bad props, Leatherface is all of a sudden sexualized and the Cook monologues hard-core while the girl is strapped in to the dinner table. The daringly subtle comedy of the first is on full display here (one look at the classic poster tells you that). Basically everything that felt casual and implied in the first is now made completely explicit and exploited.
That said, it's hard to blame an 80s horror movie for being an 80s horror movie. It's a product of it's time no less than the original so I don't see that as necessarily bad. And moments are still effective like the scene on the bridge where the UT fans get it (remembered) and the scene where hot-top intimidates the girl in the radio station (remembered) and the scene where Leatherface puts L.G.'s face on the girl (forgotten).
I remember when I watched all the Nightmares on Elm Street that it was interesting to see how quickly the character of Freddy became caricature and the same thing happened here. Leatherface is referred to by name a bunch and does his signature saw raised/head shimmy in every scene that he's in. Again, maybe that's the time period...
In the end, it's a pale disappointing shadow of the original, but really the original can't be sequelled. It's an artifact almost like it was found in some creepy attic half-melted from the heat. To spend any more time with that family is just a bad idea.
However, creating a new family that acts just like them? With Viggo Mortensen eating blood off your bumper? Let's see about that...