10/21/15 – OCTOBER HORROR MOVIE RECOMMENDATION #21 – The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 (1986).

Chainsaw 2

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 may be the ultimate in “you honestly have to see it to believe it” cinema. It could be the most insane and bonkers horror sequel ever made. Let me say this right up front. At face value, it’s not a good movie. It really isn’t. In fact, some may say it’s a downright horrible and embarrassing movie. Many have said it before, and after viewing, many more will continue to say it. But dammit, I’m here to actually stand up for why this movie is required viewing for all fans of 80’s horror cinema. The main reason is its pure, unbridled, INSANITY. You just can’t believe what you’re watching. You are not going to see filmmaking like this anymore, especially from an anticipated sequel to a prime property. They changed the tone. Instead of the bleak and terrifying tone of the original 1974 Texas Chainsaw Massacre, this one dances into zany comedy territory. Wait, what? They changed the foreboding and terrifying character of Leatherface into a weird love-struck, strangely horny, buffoon at times? Wait, double what? The entire third act takes place underground and almost seems like it was filmed on the set for The Goonies? Okay, seriously what is going on here? Yes, this film is sheer madness. But here’s the thing about Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 – it tried something different; and you are never bored. Sure, logic may be completely thrown out the window, but that’s the trademark of the 80’s so swim in it. You have to hand it to Tobe Hooper for attempting to make his “Aliens” instead of another “Alien.” Sure he could have done a straight sequel, but he decided to hit for the fences. For those who have never seen this flick, here’s the recap. Over a decade has passed since the original and we now pick up with the entire cannibal family once again. And now they’re killing people and making them into chili, which wins the cookoff every year. But an ex-Ranger (played by Dennis Hopper!) has been tracking them down for ages because he’s the uncle of a few characters from the original (poor Franklin.) Look, from here it doesn’t make sense to talk about it anymore. Just know that there is more insanity that you even know inside. Leatherface humps his chainsaw. The main girl seems to know how to calm Leatherface simply by saying, “be good” (plus, she screams annoyingly more than anyone on Earth.) The final setpiece underground, albeit insane, is honestly one of the coolest set designs ever, complete with skeleton furniture and walls filled with entrails. There’s an updated dinner sequence from the original. And there’s a final dueling chainsaw battle that even though doesn’t make sense, still kind of kicks ass. Also, hidden amongst the bizarre comedy and insanity are some truly horrific moments. The sequence with the removed face of one of the characters still haunts me to this day. Look, this film is insane. Did I say that? So if you’re a fan of 80’s bonkers cinema, you have to see it to believe it. You have to commend them for not playing it safe. Everyone needs a little bit of insanity every once in a while.

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2 thoughts on “10/21/15 – OCTOBER HORROR MOVIE RECOMMENDATION #21 – The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 (1986).

  1. Pingback: 10/23/15 – OCTOBER HORROR MOVIE RECOMMENDATION #23 – The Burbs. | Musings of a Scary Horror Writer.

  2. Pingback: 10/3/16 – OCTOBER HORROR MOVIE PICK #3 – Motel Hell. | Musings of a Scary Horror Writer.

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