The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)

DVD Cover (New Line Studios)
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Overall Rating 60%
Overall Rating
Ranked #1,011
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Driving through the backwoods of Texas, five youths pick up a traumatized hitchhiker, who shoots herself in their van. Shaken by the suicide, the group seeks help from the locals, but their situation becomes even more surreal when they knock on the door of a remote homestead. It's quickly apparent the residents are a family of inbred psychopaths, and the unlucky youths suddenly find themselves running for their lives. In hot pursuit is a disfigured, chainsaw-wielding cannibal known as Leatherface. --IMDb
Review by Chad
Added: April 10, 2004
We start up with the five kids in the van; Erin, Morgan, Kemper, Andy, and Pepper. They've come back from Mexico with two pounds of marijuana, and are on their way to a Lynyrd Skynyrd concert in Dallas. The description above is a bit off in all that, but it's not too terribly important. Lots of pot smoking and fondling is to be done on the trip, when all of a sudden, a woman is almost hit by the van. She's walking down the middle of the road with no regards to her own safety, so our happy campers decide to pick her up and give her a ride. The woman is kind of off her rocker, talking about people being killed and that these kids need to get away from the town. Of course, if that were to happen, we wouldn't have a movie, right? So, distraught at their movie madness, she pulls out a gun and offs herself. The kids now have a dead body in their van, and move on to the town to get the sheriff to help them out. Doesn't take a lot of guesses to figure out what happens there.

Decent enough remake, but doesn't come close to the original as so many of the kiddies are saying. Alot of the storyline was changed, but the basic premise stuck together. I would have liked to have seen a remake of the infamous hitchhiker scene from the original instead of the psycho woman, but the woman did go along more with the storyline of this one. Also, there were some minor timing fuckups which brought the story down a bit. The movie is set in 1973, but there's a few phrases / items / miscellaneous things throughout the movie which definitely wasn't around back then. A minor gripe, but could have easily been avoided.

I also didn't like the changes to Leatherface in this one. In the original movies, he was a bad-ass with some mental problems and a temper. In this one, he's a whiny little bitch with a chainsaw. Seeing Leatherface sitting on his ass bawling his eyes out almost made me cry, but for reasons other than what the storyline was showing. But enough with the comparisons, trying to be fair here.

The storyline, while considerably altered from the original, wasn't too shabby. I think that some of the coincedinces that just happened to happen were a bit off, and there were some considerable plot holes, but I suppose that could be overlooked... I guess. The acting wasn't very high on my list either... especially our straightedge, nagging-to-be-a-wife heroine, good ol' Jessica Biel. She belongs in more of a teen slasher flick than in a straight horror movie, and she definitely seems out of place here, which drags the movie down a bit more. The rest of the teenies aren't too bad, but nothing noteworthy either. Now, Leatherface himself... while his performance fits in more with this storyline, he definitely didn't do Gunner Hansen (the original Leatherface) a whole lot of justice. That was another letdown for myself. Is it really too much to ask for, when I'd like to see a remake keep the characteristics that made the original such a classic? Suppose so. The last gripe of the review, is this movie suffers from the DVD Collectors bug. What I mean is, it's quite obvious that parts were cut out solely to get people to check out the uber-ultra-7334-special-edition version in order to see things in detail. Since I didn't rent said version, I missed out on some of these happenings, which was the final letdown.

Overall, I'm a bit mixed on my thoughts on this. It was entertaining, and it did have some nice moments, but there were quite a few things that left a bad taste in my mouth. If you saw this one and enjoyed it, but haven't seen the original, you should definitely give it a view or two, as it's done a lot better in my opinion. If you enjoyed this one more than the original, you should be shot. 6/10.
compoundwhore #1: compoundwhore - added 08/18/2004, 05:36 AM
Jessica Biel definitely over-acted.
Schillinger #2: Schillinger - added 08/22/2004, 02:41 AM
Why is it that this horrible remake has a better rating than the (far superior) original? This film was trash. They turned the most brutal film of the 70's into nothing but a typical teen slasher.
Tristan #3: Tristan - added 11/04/2005, 01:37 AM
This movie destroyed the original. Not only do teens think that the original was just like this piece of trash, every fan of the original has wasted their money on something they probably thought may be have decent. They skipped over the best parts of the original, and made a cheesy new-age horror flick, with their quick paced camera editing, and pathetic character development. Overall, I think this movie is just sad. It makes you wonder what those dipshits in New Line are up to.
Ginose #4: Ginose - added 12/26/2005, 10:13 PM
First off, shut-up. I will arge with you all about how good this movie was. It wasn't GREAT but it was decent, not so much as a remake, but more like a sequal in alot of ways. For one the story has been changed dramaticaly. In all fairness this one was scarier. This Leatherface was far better designed and the charecters were far more memrorible. sure the original dominated compared to this, but you people are pissy simply because it MAY turn off some potential fans to the series. I thuroughly enjoyed this film and I am the horror master. So this movie was decent, nothing compared to the original, but good. 7/10
QuietMan #5: QuietMan - added 01/02/2006, 07:14 PM
Honestly never saw the original but this movie is awesome to do mystery science theater 3000 type commentary on with your friends. "how can that chainsaw still be running it's been a long time? " "Well my friend that chainsaw is powered by dream light and moon beams"

just for that i gotta say 7/10
Ginose #6: Ginose - added 08/09/2007, 11:27 PM
...disregard previous comment, I'm an asshole. Ignore all comparisons to the original "TCM" and drop the rating to a 6.3/10. A purchase and repeated viewings have now shown me a greater truth to both this and the original. My apologies, once again, for my rectum-like disposition.
Crispy #7: Crispy - added 12/20/2008, 02:18 AM
Wasn't a bad flick. Any flick with Jessica Biel running around in a white tank top in the rain gets my vote. As for its merits as a slasher flick; meh, I've seen better, and I've seen worse.
Mal #8: Mal - added 12/14/2009, 07:02 PM
Okay It wasnt that but the Nu leatherface was AWSOME but the rest of the movie was sucked outloud
benloveshorror #9: benloveshorror - added 11/24/2010, 03:20 PM
I guess I should be shot then, because I liked this just as much (if not more) as the original. 9/10
Lucid Dreams #10: Lucid Dreams - added 11/24/2010, 04:05 PM
This film barely made average and I doubt I will ever take another look into this. Now like Chris said it's hard to resist Jessica Biel in a tank top running around in the rain. I hate her acting, but she is hawt. 5/10
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