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          This is the twisted tale of Vilmer and his crazy family which includes the lovely Leatherface. They have pastime of killing and stuffing people. Unfortunately, Jenny and her friends run into Vilmer and his clan in the middle of the night in the middle of the woods. Can they survive the night?

"Boy you are as dull as dishwater."
                  - W.E.

          Everything about Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation points to it not only being a huge underground success, but achieving some mainstream notoriety as well, just as its grandpappy did twenty years previous. The original writer comes back to helm the flick in his directorial debut, and the casting folks manage to land a few stars who look like they're on their way up. And my, did they strike a goldmine: two of the movie's stars are Renee Zellweger and Matthew McConaughey. I mean, this has every necessary Hallmark of underground reverence.
          It has gotten exactly the opposite. Listed near the bottom of IMDB's bottom 100 and universally reviled by the reviews posted there. Why everyone's bathing on Leatherface is beyond me. My best guess is that a whole bunch of people who had never heard of any of the films, but were Renee Zellweger fans, rented it as a kind of completist thing. Because really, it's not that bad. I've seen at least five films that make this look like Doctor Zhivago in the past year alone (and one of them was nominated for a few Oscars).
          If you've seen, or heard about, any of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre flicks, you know what to expect. The main differences is the bevy of teenagers are out on prom night; the brainless jock-type Barry and his equally annoying girlfriend Heather, and the geek, Sean, with the plucky heroine. Following an accident with another teen (listed in the credits, amusingly, as "I'm Not Hurt"), various members of the bunch, trying to find help, meet up with various townsfolk at various times, and realize there's something very odd going on...
          There was great potential here (unlike the other films, Leatherface's house this time is located close to a decent-sized commercial area) to have some real fun with the concept, but instead Henkel and company went with the same straight horror-comedy mix that the whole series works with. (Only the recent remake of the original takes itself at all seriously, which is not necessarily a bad thing.) The comedy is as mean-spirited and ugly as it is in the first film, which some people are going to hate and some will take as a welcome return to form (one figures Henkel was probably responsible for most of the original film's gallows humor). As usual, there's a lot going on that makes no real sense within the story (McConaughey's Rube Goldberg-esque prosthetic leg, the insane CIA agent played by a chilling John Gale, etc.), but again, that's not necessarily a bad thing. Some of the acting really sucks, but you expect that from a B-grade horror flick. But it succeeds at what it attempts, in a gruesome, low-budget sort of way, and doesn't deserve anywhere near the amount of revilement it has received.

Cast & Crew   |   Pictures   |   Coroner Report   |   Video Clip

          - Paul A. Partain and Marilyn Burns, both from the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre,  have cameos.

          - Intended by director Kim Henkel to be the "real" sequel to the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre. The characters of Vilmer and W.E. were intended to be the Hitchhiker and Cook characters from the original film. Jim Siedow was approached to reprise his Cook character, but was unable to.

          - TCM4 grossed $94,558 in the USA.

          - John Dugan, who played Grandfather in the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre, plays the cop at the hospital at the end of the film.

          - Bill Johnson, who played Leatherface in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 was offered the role of Leatherface.

          - Actor Jim Siedow was also offered the roll of the grandfather, but he refused.

          - The chainsaw is a McCulloch 10-10S.




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