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» iRewind Talk » Movies » « 70's Movies » The Texas Chain Saw Massacre- 1974

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Author Topic: The Texas Chain Saw Massacre- 1974
LISA LISA
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I was always too scared to watch it, and then I saw it was on Tv yesterday in the middle of the day, so I watched it for the first time. It has to be one of the scariest movies ever. Totally freaked me out. Can't believe it was based on a true story.
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Crash
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That "true story" stuff is complete BS, made up by the producers to sell the movie. It's still one of the greatest horror films ever though. It has this reputation of being incredibly gory. It's not. It's like Hitchcock's Psycho. You only think that you are seeing chainsaws cutting people up. What it has is this incredibly disturbing atmosphere. From the sickly yellow-tinged daylight scenes to the WTF stuff like the room full of bones and the live chicken in a cage too small, it creeps you out on every level. The late, great film critic Pauline Kael once pointed out that really only two directors ever had the uncanny ability to use comedy to make things even more horrifying--Brian DePalma and Tobe Hooper. Once you see TCM, you'll never forget stuff like "Look what your brother did to the door!" and "Grandpa was the best!" And drive-in critic Joe Bob Briggs had the best review ever: "A film that looks like it was made by real cannibals." [Smile]
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LISA LISA
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Yeah- they were like the Cannibalistic Beverly Hillbillies. I didn't quite get the "Grandpa" I thought that was a dead person- until he moved, did he have a mask on? It was just so gross how they kept holding her head and letting him try and whack her, and he did hit her. I closed my eyes, so in my head I am sure it must have been scarier than what really happened. I thought there was a real documentary made about the real life story?
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LISA LISA
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http://livescifi.tv/2012/11/is-the-texas-chainsaw-massacre-movie-based-on-a-true-story/
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Crash
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Yeah, I've seen that comparison. Fair enough, but I've always considered Ed Gein, the Wisconsin lampshade killer, more of an inspiration for Psycho than TCM. Police found his mother's corpse sitting in a chair when they arrested him. He apparently had used taxidermy to preserve her and talked to her as though she were still alive. Other than the wearing of a skin mask, Gein really didn't have anything more to influence TCM. The excellent retelling of Gein's story is Deranged (1974), though the character is not called Ed Gein. It's done like a documentary, and it is also pretty disturbing. Gein was ultimately found not guilty by reason of insanity because he didn't think that he was killing and stuffing people; he thought that they were animals. Trivia: Deranged was produced by Bob Clarke, director of A Christmas Story, under a pseudonym!
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LISA LISA
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They should do a real True story based on Ed Gein, he was such a whack job. He only killed a couple people, but he did dig up dead people and did nutty stuff to them.
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Crash
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Deranged is pretty accurate, as I understand, except for the changed names. (The filmmakers probably didn't want to get sued.)

One of the most disturbing things that I've ever seen was the book written by the judge at Gein's trial. There is a black-and-white crime scene photo in it of a decapitated body hanging from the rafters of Gein's barn, just as you might hang up a deer before you stuffed it. He was one of those people who probably was truly legally insane...

And when I was in school in Minnesota in the 70s, Gein jokes were still very popular across the Midwest. What did Ed Gein give his sweetheart for Valentine's Day? A box of Farmer's Fannies. What did Ed Gein say when the police came to arrest him? Oh come on, officers, have a heart! ROFL

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JCU
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There are plenty of documentaries floating around about Gein that are done quite well. Netflix had(has) two movies based on Gein with one staring Kane Hodder and a second film with someone I've never seen before. The second was more enjoyable.

As a horror buff I've never found The TCM to be a film worthy of multiple screenings after the initial viewing. I understand what Hooper was trying to do and for the most part he succeeded in his attempt but it felt way too amateur.

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