|Directed by:||Tobe Hooper|
|Written by:||Kim Henkel, Tobe Hooper|
|Cast:||Marilyn Burns, Allen Danziger, Paul A. Partain, William Vail|
I would have loved to have seen the faces of the people who saw this when it first came out back in the day. The terror begins right off the bat with the haunting narration, the radio report of the graveyard mayhem, that chilling sound of the flash bulb camera and an image of a statue made of bones and corpses. This is one of the most unsettling and most terrifying movies I've ever seen, that only gets more bizarre as it progresses and keeps the horror thriving from start to finish.
It’s not even the amount of gore that makes this film so unnerving. It’s the thought of these nuts doing these disgusting things with people’s bodies, and seems to have gone unnoticed for quite a while. It isn't that far fetched to think about a cannibal house buried deep in the country. That kind of shit could probably does exist. These aren't supernatural creatures, they're human beings. Which are often much scarier to me. To think about something like that going on for so long is enough to keep me up at night.
They market it as being based on a true story, which it is but very loosely. It's merely a hyped up take on a serial killer named Ed Gein, who liked to build furniture and stuff from his victims body parts. My favorite being cup holders made from women's breast. And that's one of the things that is so freaky about it, is how they turn a single loon into a whole family of killers. It isn't just that big ol' Leatherface to worry about, he's just part of the group.
This is one of those classics like Night of the Living Dead that only get better and even more effective with age. It’s the low budget that provides that kind of gritty filthiness to the scenery and helps create that eerie atmosphere. And even as a cross dressing squealer, I still think this is the scariest rendition of Leatherface in the whole series. He comes across as a tormented animal. Add a chainsaw, and you’ve got one hell of a combination.
BOTTOM LINE: One of the first and still one of the most gruesome slasher movies out there, maybe even a little ahead of its time with how disturbing some of the images are and how batshit bizarre it is. It’s not even that gory, there aren’t really that many people that are killed, but it still manages to get under my skin on a psychological level. A must see for horror fans all around!