[Trailer Tracks] Dissecting the ‘Texas Chainsaw 3D’ Trailer

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Movie commercials offer us a great service; they not only show us which upcoming movies look good, but also which ones to avoid. And if one looks closely, they often reveal more than intended about the film in question. In honor of this profound art, I give you TRAILER TRACKS, an examination of upcoming movie commercials: What they say, what they don’t say, and what they say on accident about the product being sold to you, the excited chump.

Today’s Entry:
Texas Chainsaw 3D (Dir. John Luessenhop)

Introduction

Everyone knows about Leatherface. He’s a mentally handicapped butcher who likes to cut things up with chainsaws and wear victims’ faces as masks. He’s back. Which is good because we haven’t seen him since House of 1000 Corpses.

The Set Up

Girl in bra! What else do you need?

This trailer doesn’t bother knocking our socks off with plot points, but the set up appears to revolve around a girl who inherits a house from a family member (“Granny”) she doesn’t know anything about. Initially we have only five potential victims — two boys and two girls and a fifth wheel. But more show up later during the trailer’s quick cuts. One of the girls has only half a shirt. That’s about it. You can maybe give the trailer some bonus points by inferring a purposeful use of “The Beast in Me” regarding the main girl’s family connection to the Sawyers. But that’s only if you’re feeling overly generous. I don’t recommend it.

The Problem

Obviously, Leatherface is the problem. Actually, I can’t even tell how many Sawyer family members this movie will involve. If I were guessing just from this trailer, Leatherface is the film’s only killer, and he lives behind some kind of hidden wall or something, happily butchering non-human meat by himself since the seventies. Probably while listening to Paul Simon.

The trailer makes it very unclear exactly what’s going on with this house. If this is supposed to be the same house from the first film, that raises concerns. For one, it’s way too clean on the inside. The big gate on the way in seems excessively showy for this family. And a pool table? Covered with a sheet? Impossible. If this is the Sawyer house, it needs to be covered in bones and those feather roach-clip things. This place looks like it was cleaned up and furnished by a turn of the century Martha Stewart (who happened to really enjoy playing pool). I barely even get the impression that we’re out on the country. Or in Texas. I do highly doubt this is the original house, but I don’t see how Leatherface could be associated with joint in any way at all.

Regardless, there’s a secret door one kid opens, which I guess leads to Sawyer trouble because it definitely leads to an ominous title card and chainsaw sounds. After that it’s all chainsaw roars cut up to sound like Skrillix, which is smart advertising as death by Skrillex is a horrific thing indeed.

The Solution

Well, the trailer mostly tells who’s going to live and die. With this few victims, we always know something’s up when a character’s not in a shot or when a tied up girl has a silent chainsaw placed on her shoulder.

A couple things keep this trailer intriguing. It looks like we’re going to get a prerequisite “Leatherface chases a girl around outside” scene, but some shots indicate that he’ll follow her into a county fair setting with rides and funnel cakes and everything. I don’t have my hopes up too high, but Leatherface out in the real world sounds like something worth checking out, while yet another remake of the first film (official or otherwise, nearly every entry in this series remakes the first one anyway) does not.

Actually, I know what’s going to happen. At the end of the film we discover the Leatherface killing everyone is actually a Leatherface Jr. going through training designed by Leatherface Sr. He’s making his father proud, too.

But then Remake Leatherface comes along and tries add stupid, unwanted parenting tips. Then House of 1,000 Corpses fake Leatherface shows up and does the same thing. Pretty soon all the Leatherfaces are fighting. Only Leatherface Jr. survives. Realizing his many fathers, uncles, second cousins are dead, he takes off his leather mask and leaves killing behind to fulfill his true dream: Broadway. This is why they took “Massacre” off the title.

Summation

Texas Chainsaw 3D is supposedly a direct sequel to the original, completely free of attachments to the remake. Nothing in this trailer gives off that vibe, however, since it looks like just another Platinum Dunes crapfest. Hopefully there’s a lot more Sawyer action in the story than we see here. I want to know what happened to him after he got off The Island.

And don’t think I’m not pissed that this direct sequel route arrogantly assumes Tobe Hooper’s actual sequel never happened. I can already tell this one’s nowhere near as great as Chop-top:

  • Aaron Emery

    “… death by Skrillex is a horrific thing indeed” it truly is, and a cross dressing Leatherface Skrillex could possibly be even worse! The one thing that really bothered me about this trailer was seeing Leatherface’s non- leather face. Does anybody know when this takes place, is it modern times? If so how old is Leatherface? 60-70?

  • tungbandit

    synopsis says it takes place decades later so leatherface would have to be up there in age

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1295480624 Sam Scarcello

    The clean house, pool table, gate, etc. were the most annoying things about this trailer. It has the same entrance, but the grime and grit of all the previous films (including the remake and Beginning) are lost on this one. The fact that we didn’t get a proper exterior shot of the house is concerning as well. This is a letdown, following the first poster and image.

  • Evan Saathoff

    I really had high hopes, but so far this looks just awful. They should put out a rhythmic chainsaw album, though.

    • http://www.facebook.com/jalimia Jay Alimia

      Rhythmic noise IS quite nice. :)

  • megalodonbite

    You want to hear the REAL problem? This movie sucks…period. Of course its hard to make that assumption based on a trailer but so far this film looks absolutely disgraceful. People can crap on Platinum Dunes’ versions all they want to but at least they were gritty, eye appealing and brutal (referring to The Beginning which personally I thought was a decent film). EVERYTHING about this trailer SUCKS. You want to make an “updated” version of Leatherface or whatever the hell the objective is then I want to see GRITTY, dark visuals not a mansion with pool tables and a f**king maid. Mark my words, this will be nothing more than another “teenie bopper scream film” that accomplishes absolutely nothing except the exploitation of a great horror villain. Stick to the original people.

    • Taboo

      Agreed.

  • DexterAHS

    Meh. This reminds me of the Friday the 13th remake. What could go wrong with that? Everything apparently. Is it that hard to make a good horror movie these days?

    • Marty McFly

      The Friday the 13th remake was actually good. This looks like shit.

      • http://www.facebook.com/jalimia Jay Alimia

        The first 15 minutes of the F13 remake were great, the rest was shit. This, too, is shit.

  • xxxwolf666

    I do agree that there are at least 2 different people wearing skin masks and using chainsaws in the trailer. One is an obviously large individual adn the other seems pretty short and skinny. Maybe the whole family does the leatherface thing? I really hope this is good. Hated the clean house and pooltable that looks like it was just installed.

  • WalkingDeadGuy

    I agree, from what is shown in the trailer, it doesn’t seem to bring anything new to the table. I don’t get the same vibe that I feel I should be getting from a “Texas” film. I actually enjoyed Platinum Dunes remake and the prequel; they felt like they belonged in the same universe as the original. Marcus Nispel’s remake was well made, the prequel, although featuring a weaker story, was particularly nasty and brutal to watch at times. I still think that they’re Platinum Dunes only achievement thus far.

    The trailer for ‘Texas Chainsaw 3D’ feels like another Friday the 13th sequel, except, replace a Crystal Lake cabin in the woods with an old and dusty Texas home, and then of course swap Jason for Leather face. The problem is, It’s not a “Friday” sequel, a ‘Texas’ film should be raw, feature bizarre images and grisly murders. Oh well, We’ll all see come January.

  • DEADFUCK

    My dried up cum stain could write a better article than this asshole.

    • joesey

      lol

  • joesey

    wow so negative so soon. this is just the first trailer. it looks rushed i’m sure there will be a better one. It takes place in a different house in a different town that’s the setup. The old man was still alive in the 1st one so it’s probably a protege of his of some sort. And keep in mind Gunnar Hanson, Marilyn Burns make cameos in it so its a mini reunion of sorts so its worth checking out and there are several Sawyers listed on imdb so its not just Leatherface in it. I’m sure the killrate will be high b/c its Texas Chainsaw afterall! It beats watching another boring paranormal movie.

    • WalkingDeadGuy

      True, as unoriginal as the trailer made the film look, I am still more stoked to see this film than I would be for some watered down PG-13 ghost/exorcism movie. Even the worse “Texas Chainsaw” sequels are entertaining in some degree. And like you said, it’s cool that Gunnar Hanson and Marilyn Burns return for a cameo. Awesome.

      • MakeThisAMovies

        I agree. While the trailer is overly unexciting, I’m going to hold judgement until I see a bit more. It already shows promise of a few intense set pieces (running to a noisy fair for help, stuck in the car with Leatherface circling it, trapped in a coffin) The biggest clue to me is the open grave. Grandpa perhaps?

        Bring back The Shape. Fans Unite! Sign the petition!
        http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/bring-back-michael-myers/

      • http://www.facebook.com/jalimia Jay Alimia

        The only (and I mean ONLY) reason that I might see this film is simply because Gunnar seems to be on board.
        He cares about the franchise. He was very outspoken about being approached by the Platinum Dunes remake and how their was no fucking way he was going to be tied into that piece of shit.

        • http://www.facebook.com/jalimia Jay Alimia

          *there, not their.

  • staindFAN

    Im just going out on a limb here, but what if the house is “cleaned up” because there was an obvious resident living in it and they are now dead (Granny?). Maybe she or he, or who ever the hell cleaned it up a bit? Im almost willing to bet that there will be an explanation in the film as to why the house is “clean”, assuming it is supposed to be the original house from TCM ’74. I am looking forward to this though, I just hope at the least it’s entertaining.

    • djblack1313

      staindFAN, that’s EXACTLY what i am thinking. someone normal had lived there and they cleaned up the house they lived in. i don’t know why people would expect the house to be filthy.

  • C-SAW

    I’m sick of seeing people comment and not know what the hell his movie is even about. They’ve just seen a poster and a trailer; but NEVER READ ANYTHING about it. All the questions and statements on “It looks nothing like the remakes”. “The house doesn’t look like the original. This is a travesty”. NEWSFLASH!!! IT’S NOT THE SAME HOUSE! It’s a completely different location from Tobe’s 74 film. Has anybody read the frickin synopsis? This (if anything) will be better than the remake and prequel. It is the sequel that people have wanted for years. Whether or not it’ll be good, we have to wait and see. I also don’t think Gunner Hansen and Marilyn Burns would’ve agreed to do this movie (cameo appearances) if they didn’t think if would do the original justice. Considering the fact Gunner had turned down both the remake and prequel in 03 and 06. This movie will definitely be better than the re make. I don’t think it’s perfect. Especially I’m beyond pissed they filmed in Louisiana. But at the end of the day I believe it will be good.

  • C-SAW

    Seriously people, just frickin read.

  • MJD_03

    Trailer was bad, but it’s also a tough one to pull off. The movie itself looks like it should be straight to video. Love him or hate him, the Michael Bay produced TCM’s were nice to look at visually and those movies had a bigger budget for back in the day. Going back to the Trailer, it’s a tough one to pull off because the last two movies had awesome Trailers done by probably the best trailer editor out there (Bill Neil). The 2003 TCM trailer won Best Of Show at the Key Art Awards (top award show for trailers) and to this days, it’s the only horror trailer to ever win that award.

  • ThunderDragoon

    I mean, come on, it’s already better than the terrible TCM 2 so we should all be happy about that lol.

  • tungbandit

    seems just like nispel’s and the original: kids traveling by hippie van to a similar looking house with the same ol chainsaw wielding maniac. i’m in so far, but i’m wondering how they’re going to explain older leatherface and this suburban setting. i didn’t see one lampshade made of human skin in that house so it’s definitley not familiar territory…..

  • MakeThisAMovies

    So me thinks that the final act in this film willl deliver on the dinner scene, crazy family values, bone furniture madness we’re looking for. While all of the above critiques are valid based on this trailer, I have faith that Lionsgate (who has always been more intuned with what fans want than other studios) would not have moved forward on this unless it truly FELT like a Chainsaw sequel. I think a “remodel” or simply just a change of location makes since if this is actually modern day. Otherwise Leatherface would have been caught or killed long before…the Sawyers would need to fly under the radar to stay undetected. But much like the original TCM 2 that doesn’t mean they can’t have some underground lair of filth to truly call home. Anyway, this is all speculation, but I think the possible direction is smart. Otherwise we would simply have another TCM that follows all the same beats and leaves us with that “been there done that” feeling.

  • Remember-Slithis

    I thought in the plot synapse said the locals burned down the house after the girl escaped and went to the cops.Which does not explain How and why Leatherface lives in a clean house!

  • Zombie-Killa

    From Evan’s post- “And don’t think I’m not pissed that this direct sequel route arrogantly assumes Tobe Hooper’s actual sequel never happened.”

    Same here! It might not be a classic, but an actual sequel did happen years ago. I guess they’re trying to fool the fans of the original films (minus The Next Generation), but it’s not working! lol.

  • Boogie138

    no one really thinks this looks good do they? i dig tcm2 cuz i like camp, and all the reboot(s) did was make me want to watch the original again. i said it on another site, i think its time to let this series go. the first was great, and everything after failed to live up to the standard. netfix watch just to say i gave it a chance