Texas Chainsaw 3D
"The trend lately in Hollywood is that the first weekend in January belongs to horror. Unfortunately for us, it's subpar horror."— Chris Stuckmann
Texas Chainsaw 3D (released on home media and stylized onscreen simply as Texas Chainsaw) is a 2013 American slasher horror film directed by John Luessenhop, with a screenplay by Adam Marcus, Debra Sullivan, and Kirsten Elms. It is the seventh installment in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre franchise and was presented in 3D. The movie is a direct sequel to the 1974 horror classic, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and was released on January 4, 2013. A prequel that takes place before the original 1974 film, titled Leatherface, was released in 2017.
Decades ago, residents of Newt, Texas, long suspected that the Sawyer family was responsible for the disappearances of many people. When their suspicions finally were confirmed, vigilantes torched the Sawyer compound and killed every member of the family -- or so they thought. Much later, a young woman named Heather (Alexandra Daddario) learns that she has inherited Texas property from an unknown relative, and she is unaware of horrors that await in the mansion's dank cellar.
Why It Sucks in 3D
- Most of the time, the film relies on cheap jump scares by Leatherface.
- Also there are some scenes in the film where the Leatherface jump scares have a random pig squealing sound.
- Several characters are significantly miscast, like Bill Moseley as Drayton Sawyer who looks nothing like Jim Siedow (the original Drayton Sawyer).
- Alexanderia Daddario is also not fit to play Heather Miller, who was a baby during the events of the first film which would make her 40-years-old during the present time of the movie, but she looks, acts, and behaves like a woman in her mid-twenties.
- It steals elements from other horror films, such as Saw, The Devil's Rejects and Freddy vs. Jason.
- The film lacks most of the suspenseful and tense mood the first, and to an extent the other sequels and both remakes had.
- Absolutely horrendous lighting in some scenes which isn't helped by most of the movie taking place at night.
- Numerous plot holes, like how Leatherface was able to escape the fire from the opening scene almost completely unharmed.
- Terrible, lazy, and ugly-looking cinematography.
- Poor direction from John Luessenhop; most of the film is directed like a straight-to-video or made-for-television movie.
- Many characters are one-dimensional and stereotypical, especially Heather and her friends who are the typical "horror movie characters who like to party and drink."
- There was an unneeded cameo/reference to Jigsaw from Saw that was seen during the carnival scene.
- It feels completely unnecessary to continue the story from the 1974 film and to add in more Sawyer family members.
- A few of the death scenes look incredibly cheesy, like Burt Hartman’s death where you can obviously tell that the blood is CGI when he's shredded.
- A few continuity errors, like how the sheriff of Newt’s name was said to be Jesus Maldonado in the 1974 film but here his name is Hooper.
- Almost all of the characters are plainly unlikable, such as Darryl, a hitchhiking man who’s revealed to be a thief, or Mayor Burt Hartman, the man behind the killing of the Sawyer family.
- It is extremely hard to side with any character in this film, as the Sawyers are still murderers but the film tries to paint them as sympathetic and the people who killed the Sawyers are trying to be labeled heroes but they just come off as unlikable.
- Pointless plot twists, like how Officer Carl Hartman turned out to be Mayor Burt's son.
- Both the villains and the supposed "heroes" of the movie are hard to side with.
- Some of the dialogue is cringe-worthy, like how Heather throws Leatherface his chainsaw and says "Do your thing, cus!".
- Too many pointless and boring subplots that go nowhere, other than to pad out the film's runtime.
- Poor writing from Adam Marcus who directed the infamous "final" installment of the Friday The 13th films titled Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday.
- Some of the cast members from the original 1974 movie return to play roles in this film, such as Marilyn Burns, John Dugan, and even Gunnar Hansen (aka the original Leatherface).
- A few of the death/murder scenes can be pretty gruesome and terrifying.
- Leatherface’s mask design in this movie is very unsettling and creepy.
- One of the very few films in the franchise to not have any continuity errors, in fact, the film opens just after the events of the original, looking exactly the same as it when it ended.
- In one moment, it uses the iconic camera noise.
- The acting can be pretty alright, like Dan Yeager’s portrayal as Leatherface and Bill Mosley does a decent job as Drayton Sawyer, even though he looks nothing like Jim Siedow.
- A couple of throwbacks to this film's 1974 predecessor, like Leatherface’s iconic door slam sequence.
Texas Chainsaw 3D was panned for plot holes and inconsistencies with the original film. On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, Texas Chainsaw 3D holds an approval rating of 18% based on 79 reviews, with an average rating of 3.41/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "As an ugly and cynical attempt to rebrand Leatherface as horror anti-hero, Texas Chainsaw 3D is a bold move for the franchise." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 31 out of 100, based on 17 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews". On CinemaScore, audiences gave the film an average grade of "C+" on an A+ to F scale, with 63% of moviegoers being under the age of 25. It, alongside The Next Generation, are considered worst films from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.
Chris Stuckmann gave this movie rating of F and even later included the top 4 of The Worst Movies of 2013.
IGN editor Eric Goldman wrote, "A few fun 3D-aided jump-scares aside, Texas Chainsaw 3D is a generic and laughable attempt to follow the original."
On its opening night, Texas Chainsaw 3D took first place, earning approximately $10,200,000 at the North American box office. The film ultimately took first place for the entire weekend, making $21,744,470. As of March 2013, the film has made $39,093,317 worldwide.
Upcoming alternate direct sequel
Following the release of Leatherface, the producers had the rights to make five more Texas Chainsaw Massacre films. In April 2015, producer Christa Campbell stated that the fate of the potential films would largely depend on the financial reception and perceived fan reactions regarding the 2017 prequel. Campbell clarified in December 2017 that Lionsgate and Millennium Films had lost the franchise rights due to the time it took to release it. On August 24, 2018, it was reported that Legendary Pictures was interested in purchasing the Texas Chainsaw Massacre license with interest in television and film. In May 2020, it was revealed that the film would serve as an alternate direct sequel to the original 1974 film, ignoring every film that came after along with Texas Chainsaw 3D and Leatherface as well as focusing on a 60 year old Leatherface and a survivor named Sally Hardesty from the 1974 film, which will differentiate Texas Chainsaw 3D along with non-canonizing the Leatherface prequel film By March 2021, Álvarez confirmed that the film would focus on an "old man Leatherface," while also revealing that they took an old school approach to the film, noting vintage lenses and the gore being executed practically. He also revealed that the film had completed around that point. On April 15, 2021, the film was revealed to be titled Texas Chainsaw Massacre removing the "the". It was rumored at one point that the title had changed to Texas Chainsaw Begins, but screenwriter, Chris Thomas Devlin denied this. It was reported that after test screenings, the audience reaction was generally negative. However by August, Álvarez stated that the overall audience score was mostly positive, while emphasizing that the film remains respectful to the first film's legacy. In August 2021, it was announced that the film would skip a theatrical release and would instead release on Netflix in 2021. It was released on February 18, 2022, to generally negative reviews.