Friday, 19 August 2011



Why, near the start of this frankly unremarkable retread of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, does one of the characters ask his friend whether they've seen Night Of The Living Dead? Answer: because this frankly unremarkable retread of the The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is written and directed by one Cameron Romero, son of George A. Mercifully Cameron has resisted the temptation to attempt to cash in on the Romero name and legacy by making a zombie film, but unfortunately that, and the acknowledgement that it's quite nicely photographed, are pretty much the best things that can be said about it.

Staunton Hill has a bunch of young people hitch-hiking through Virginia in 1969 (presumably to get those pesky mobiles and instant messages out of the way) to get to a political rally in Washington, but winding up stranded at a remote and deserted farmhouse where they're terrorised by a family of homicidal maniacs: an obese woman, a simpleton and a ranting old bat in a wheelchair. And then they're bloodily killed off for body parts. One of them - the inevitable Final Girl - gets away, is captured, gets away....

And that's literally all there is to it. To state that Staunton Hill is light on plot is like saying that I Spit On Your Grave is light on showtunes or Full Metal Jacket is light on sequences of cage-fighting. There's nothing on display that we haven't seen dozens of times before: it's astonishingly predictable and as a result rather dull. You know what's going to happen and you don't really care what happens, no matter how much there is in the way of dismemberment, decapitation and disembowelment. So what? It's Texas Chainsaw and a score of other slashers all over again. Poor.


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