The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning (2006)

The age-old question of what makes these unspeakable people do unspeakable things is a lucrative quandary. Podcasts, Documentaries, and deep criminological studies all dedicated much thought to the discussion, Fiction also devotes a lot of thought to this, with origin stories aplenty attempting to shine lights on what made their captivating characters so bewitching. In 2006, a prequel film was conceived showing us why the Hewett clan is like the way they are, and how the killer known as Leatherface got his start. In The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning.

Callbacks are commonplace throughout the franchise, and things are no different for The Beginning.

1939, A baby was born, on the job at the meat processing plant, costing his mother’s life and tossed away. Another woman, looking for scraps, finds the abandoned baby and takes him to the house. In 1969, the boy, now called Thomas, grows and gets a job at the same plant. Thomas doesn’t take too kindly to the plant being closed and takes matters into his hand. Meanwhile, Brothers Dean and Eric, their girlfriends are enjoying some downtime before volunteering to be shipped to Vietnam, but after getting lost in the back roads of Texas, they will soon discover bloodshed closer to home.

R. Lee Ermey, and his sadistic character Hoyt, returns, complete with backstory

You’d think after the first four minutes, you’d understand all you want about the origins of the Platinum Dunes remake; if you want to know why certain characters are the way they are, sans the out-there elements from The Next Generation, The Beginning is a great place to start. We see first-hand the impact of the meat plant in this saga, and how the closure led to the fateful events almost five films have depicted. If you want more reasons to feel some sympathy for the plight of Leatherface, seeing the circumstances of his birth, while spending some more time with his family may be just the ticket. Especially as cast members like R. Lee Ermey make a fine return.

The Beginning covers topics of law and order, degradation of society, and family!

Hoyt hating the degradation of the community, and belligerently taking matters into his own hands, adds an interesting layer to the character’s backstory. For those who desire even more social commentary, you need to look no further than our victims. Young Eric and Dean, despite outwardly seeming enthusiastic, might be risking their lives to ship off to the bloodiest period of the Vietnam War, (even though neither might be as willing as they let on). Yet might find an equitable bloodbath in the outskirts of Texas, that they can’t as easily escape from. The Beginning doesn’t shy away from the visceral thrills and blood-soaked killings that modern audiences crave. As such, those who don’t care much for commentary will find copious spectacle through the Chainsaw, as to be expected.

While moving the action a couple of years earlier, The Beginning still manages to encapsulate a nostalgic look of its setting, whilst delivering a modern slasher thriller.

By answering questions you didn’t even know you had asked, Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning provides ample material for its prequel. The societal commentary is there, and blood and guts for all those who want to revel in some good ol’ fashioned bloodlust. The Beginning deserves praise for how well it integrates all this into a singular package. Even though it will end up being Platinum Dune’s final offering, it is always a great place to start at the beginning.

The family is all here!

If you want more positive reviews delivered to the e-mail box of your choice, you can click on that little text bubble at the bottom of the screen. Do you agree or disagree? or have a suggestion for another pop-culture artefact that needs a positive light shone on it? Leave a comment in the comment box below! But remember to keep it positive!

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