MOVIE: Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning (2006)

Yep, it’s October: the month when I start watching more bad horror movies than usual to play along with the Halloween mood. You can expect at least four more movie reviews like this one by Monday, incidentally, as this weekend is my last one at home before Halloween rolls around, and thus I have a lot of bad-movie ground to cover in only a short amount of time. (The weekend after this one, I’ll be visiting my folks, so after THAT weekend is over, you can expect some reviews of bad sci-fi and disaster movies. My mom doesn’t do chainsaw-wielding serial killer flicks, though — more’s the pity.)

Luckily, this one I didn’t actually have to pay for — it came on during a free Cinemax weekend trial thingy last Sunday, and I recorded it and finally got around to watching it last night. It’s just as gruesome as you’d expect (it’s theoretically a “prequel” to the main Texas Chainsaw Massacre film, so it’s set in the late 1960’s, a fact we were supposed to deduce primarily by the fact one of the girls wore a bandana on her head a lot and the two boys kept talking about being drafted to Vietnam — other than that, the sets and costumes were decidedly 2006, I must say). And it’s also about as predictable as you’d expect, especially since we know it’s a prequel and that, therefore, everybody is going to die except for Leatherface, who will keep going for an eternity of worsening sequels just like Freddy Kruger and Jason Voorhees.

That said, it’s always fun seeing R. Lee Ermey, especially when he gets to yell, shoot guns, and make people do push-ups (it’s what he does best, after all — semper fi!). And Jordana Brewster is a fairly decent actress, which helped compensate for some of the other (really bad!) actors in the film. I’m always sorry to see her in these things, frankly, because I like her a lot and think she could be landing better parts if she’d quit taking on stupid movies like this one. Time for a new agent, Jordy!

All in all, not as craptacular as you might expect, which I recognize is fairly faint praise, but for horror fans wondering if this one is worth plunking onto the couch for, it ought to be somewhat helpful to hear. I’ve seen worse — for example, I’ve seen Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2. It was worse.

By the way, I’d add a caveat here about the startling amount of extremely graphic violence (“not for the faint of heart!”), but if you need to be told to expect that from a Texas Chainsaw movie, you really haven’t been paying attention. Dudes, do not rent this movie if you abhor violence and can’t stand the sight of blood. Also, it is not for children. Or my mom. And cats don’t appear to like it either, for that matter. Mine fled the room at the first roar of the power tools. Wuss.

[Netflix me | Buy me]

Genre: Horror

Cast: R. Lee Ermey, Jordana Brewster, Taylor Handley, Matthew Bomer, Lee Tergesen


16 Responses to “MOVIE: Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning (2006)”

  1. Trip Says:

    Would Phantasm be on your list of horror flicks this weekend? I remember seeing that as a kid and it seriously freaked me out. I think it featured a freaky metal ball with a spike or a drill on it that flies around aiming for people’s foreheads.

    And there were midgets in coffins, a really deep hole in the woods, and a tall sinister white-haired old man. That’s entertainment.

    Also, it wouldn’t be Halloween without zombies, so hopefully a George Mller classic like Dawn of the Dead is also on the list. Zombie movies are universally cool. I think deep down we all have latent fantasies about the end of civilization as we know it, where we get to hole up in gigantic shopping malls with our friends, and we get to break out the shotguns against slow-moving hordes of undead while wearing the grooviest threads pilfered straight from the racks at Chess King. Nice.

  2. Alisa Says:

    You might want to watch the Rob Zombie version of Chainsaw, not all that bad. I like the Ving Rhames Dawn of the Dead. And it’s not Holloween w/out watching Army of Darkness.

  3. Alisa Says:

    Oh, and one more movie for you, Phantoms w/Ben Affleck, Peter O’Toole, and Rose McGowen.

  4. megwood Says:

    Trip, you’re entirely missing the point of the whole plan, which is to watch BAD horror movies (and also, I think you mean George Romero — unless there’s a zombie version of “Happy Feet” available, in which case, by all means, SIGN ME UP). So, no, “Dawn of the Dead” does not count (that’s good horror, not bad horror), and neither, really, does “Phantasm,” though now that you mention that one, I may have to dig my old VHS copy of of its dank box in the garage anyway because I’s in the mood.

    Alisa is a bit more understanding of the plan, though I can’t watch “Phantoms,” because that actually falls under the classification, “unwatchably, inanely bad” not “good bad.” As for Rob Zombie — he made a Chainsaw movie? Are you sure you have that right? Or did you mean his new “Halloween”? The new “Halloween” is not out on video yet, so it’s off the list. And I’ve seen all his other movies already (Zombie’s, I mean), so probably won’t be doing those either.

    I’d just TELL you what’s on the list, except then you’d roll your eyes and not check back later to read the reviews. Trust me. When I say “bad horror,” that is precisely what I mean!

  5. Alisa Says:

    Meg – Rob’s movie is a 2003, w/Jessica Biel.

  6. megwood Says:

    Yeah, I saw that 2003 remake — but Rob Zombie wasn’t involved in that, was he? I don’t see his name anywhere on the IMDb page for it, nor was it listed in his credits either.

    I actually thought Zombie’s “Devil’s Rejects” was brilliant, incidentally, so fans of horror who haven’t seen that one should rent it posthaste. That is one VERY successfully disturbing film.

  7. Alisa Says:

    I know I found the same thing when I did the IMDb search myself, but if you google Rob Zombie and Chainsaw remake it pops up. LOL

  8. megwood Says:

    Ah, another person fooled into thinking Google is a good place to find reliable information! Alisa, I am disappointed in you!

    Your friendly local librarian

  9. Alisa Says:


  10. Alisa Says:

    I just thought of another bad movie for your weekend, Boggie man w/David Boreanaz and I just realized from watching a commercial the other night that Emily Deschanel is also in it.

  11. Trip Says:

    Personally, I say life is far too short for bad horror. That’s just comedy with more screaming and cutting tools. I suppose without bad horror, we would never have known about the C.H.U.D. threat among us or that leprechauns can be evil, too.

    I can’t believe I flubbed George Romero, too…I’ve seen those movies enough times I should be ashamed of myself.

    Also, not sure if this counds as “good bad”, but They Live is near and dear to my heart as well. I mean, John Carpenter shot, like, the longest onscreen knock-down drag-out fight in movie history, just so Rowdy Roddy Piper can get Keith David to put on a pair of sunglasses to finally, finally see the monsters. Classic!

  12. megwood Says:

    Alisa, you need to be stopped right now. Because David Boreanaz ISN’T IN “Boogeyman” (that’s Barry Watson, from “What About Brian”) and if you next tell me you found that when you Googled “Boreanaz and Boogeyman,” I’m going to have to stop speaking to you for real. Also, I’ve seen that one already too. It’s playing for free on the FAM channel next weekend, if anybody else is interested yet afraid to pay money for it. 😉

    Trip, life is too short for bad horror movies for many people, this is true. However, I am not one of them. “Comedy with more screaming and cutting tools” is exactly what I’m going for this weekend, though it turns out this is harder than I thought it would be. It’s possible I’ve already seen all the bad horror movies that are out there, so next I think I’m going to go for two movies that recently came out on DVD instead of going backwards in time too much.

    I LOVE John Carpenter, though, so wouldn’t describe most of his movies using the word “bad” at all, including “They Live,” which is an old favorite. No wait, I take that back — two “good bad” John Carpenter movies would be the original “The Fog” (sea shanties AND slashers!) and “Ghosts of Mars” (outer space AND zombies!). Brilliant, even when they are sort of making you roll your eyes and snort a lot.

  13. Alisa Says:

    No your right, my bad this time. I got him confused w/David. I don’t know how, but I did.

    Now, I don’t consider this a bad movie, for I love it so, I LOVE Bram Stoker’s Dracula w/Keanu Reeves. (Now, I know I got that actor right, LMFAO)

  14. Alisa Says:

    I just realized that when I mentioned David Boreanaz the movie I meant was Valetine. Now that was a TRULY AWFUL movie.

  15. Liz Says:

    YES! “Valentine” was a BIG disappointment! And I really like David Boreanaz; I think he’s quite a good actor, though you couldn’t tell from that movie! “Bones” is one of my favorite TV shows.

  16. Buy Things Says:

    Buy Things…

    […]MOVIE: Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning (2006) «[…]…

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