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Film / The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning

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A Prequel to The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003) remake, released in 2006.

The film opens on a scene that tells the audience how Leatherface came to the Hewitt family. Cut to thirty years later, where two brothers and their girlfriends are having one last road trip together through Texas. After a run-in with some bikers, they become targets of Hewitt family's brand of Southern Comfort.

This film provides examples of:

  • Anachronism Stew: When Matt Boomer's character is introduced, his character does an homage to Apocalypse Now (which notably featured Dennis Hopper, who had played Lefty Enright in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2). The homage is justified since he is a war vet in 'Nam, but given the film is set years before the actual Apocalypse Now was released boggles the mind.
  • An Arm and a Leg: When Monty's leg has to be amputated, Hoyt orders Leatherface to cut off both of his legs.
    Luda Mae: What on earth didya do that for?
    Sheriff Hoyt: You know, jus' to balance things out.
  • Asshole Victim: The meat plant owner, Alex the female biker, and Holden the male biker.
  • Berserk Button: Calling Leatherface a "freak" or "animal" is guaranteed to enrage him.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Eric admits to underscoring how affected he was by Vietnam to keep from scaring Dean about going there, apparently re-enlisted to be able to protect him, and lies about being Dean when Hoyt finds his brother's half-burnt draft card and wants to punish the draft-dodger. In the end, Dean returns the favor by confessing the truth to save Eric from further torture at Hoyt's hands.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: Compared to, well, nearly every other movie in the franchise, but especially the remake that this film serves as the prequel to. Whilst that film had some brutal kills, this one takes the bloodshed to frankly ridiculous levels.
  • Bullying a Dragon: The factory workers think it's a great idea to go ahead and taunt Leatherface with his previously mentioned Berserk Button, ignoring the fact the guy was holding a meat cleaver and is far more taller than them. While the workers wisely backed down once he got up and glared at them, the factory owner ended up getting killed later in retaliation for the remarks.
  • Butt-Monkey: Dean, Eric, and Bailey all suffer a lot of brutal torture and injuries while captives, it's implied that Bailey is raped, and in the end they don't get away.
  • Cannibal Clan: The Hewitts actually become this during the film, as opposed to the previous entry, which didn't even hint at it.
  • Damsel out of Distress: Zigzagged. Bailey needs Eric to untie her during the escape attempt but also makes some game contributions of her own (noticing the keys, finishing untying her feet as Eric retrieved them, helping use a table to push back the Tea Lady into the door and then going for the truck), Chrissie escapes on her own after she's caught although she doesn't get far.
  • Defiant Captive: All four main characters show some of this towards the Hewitts, although Bailey's is undermined by a rapid and brutal case of Break the Cutie.
  • Danger Takes a Backseat: Leatherface kills Chrissie in the ending by hiding in her car and surprising her. Which is actually rather incongruous, given that Leatherface is approximately 12 feet tall and built like a linebacker..
  • Darker and Edgier: This prequel is no less darker compared to the movie that came before it which also was already dark. .It also is way more Brutal like mentioned above.This prequel may arguably be darker than both the Original and the Remake, Unlike the ending of it's Predecessor where Erin and the Baby escapes. Everyone dies in this one and Leatherface gets away with it leaving no witnesses.
  • Dissonant Serenity: Bailey during the dinner scene. It turns out she's had her teeth and tongue removed offscreen.
  • Doomed by Canon: Seeing how the Hewitts are still operating in the preceding film, this is expected.
  • Elopement: Hinted at with Bailey's decision to run off to Mexico with Dean.
  • Failed a Spot Check: How did Chrissie not see (or smell) Leatherface hiding in the backseat? The guy isn't exactly hard to miss.
  • Final Girl: Chrissie. Subverted in that she dies as well.
  • Flaying Alive: Leatherface flays Dean's arm with a knife (apparently For the Evulz) before running him through with a chainsaw.
  • Gorn: Unrelenting to the point of being ridiculous.
  • Go Through Me: Eric does this, to keep Hoyt from chasing after Dean. It works for a bit, but then Dean steps in an animal trap and his scream distracts Eric, who Hoyt knocks out.
  • Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: Dean and Bailey.
  • Hooks and Crooks: Leatherface catches an escaping victim with a hook and drags her back to his family's house.
  • Hope Spot: Several in quick succession, when Dean, Eric, and Bailey make an escape attempt that ultimately ends with all three badly injured and back in the Hewitt's hands.
  • Hyper-Awareness: Downplayed, but Bailey noticed where the keys to the Hewitt's truck were and quickly directs Eric to them when he comes to help her.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: The previous film didn't even imply the Hewitt family's cannibalism. Here, they're portrayed as a proper Cannibal Clan, which also serves to bring them more in line with the Sawyers from the original.
  • Leg Focus: Bailey spends all of her screen time sowing off her legs in either a fairly short skirt, or her underwear.
  • Not Distracted by the Sexy: Dean in his first scene is too distracted trying to think of how to break his decision to dodge the draft to Eric, to pay attention to Bailey's seduction, something she quickly picks up on.
    Bailey: This may come as a shock to you, but most guys are into this kind of thing.
  • No One Gets Left Behind: Eric makes sure to go and get Bailey during the escape attempt. Later, Chrissie looks like she's thinking about running away after witnessing Eric's horrible death before she hears Bailey screaming and goes to try and find her.
  • Offscreen Teleportation: A particularly cruel example when Leatherface shows up to capture Bailey during the escape attempt.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • In the opening scene, when Leatherface's mother goes into labor and collapses, one of her co-workers rushes to help her before being viciously pushed aside by their Jerkass boss.
    • Leatherface spares the life of a co-worker at the meat-packing plant, despite the fact that said co-worker pushed his Berserk Button by calling him a "dumb animal" while attempting to tell him to leave. It actually looks like he's going to murder the man at first, but then he drops his meat cleaver and just walks away.
  • Rape Discretion Shot: Sheriff Hoyt is seen unfastening his belt in front of Chained to a Bed Bailey.
  • A Real Man Is a Killer: Leatherface/Thomas chases after the Final Girl with his chainsaw, his first murder on behalf of the Hewitt family. Sheriff Hoyt, the closest thing Thomas has to a father figure, stares after him with an expression bordering on paternal love and simply states "There comes a time when every boy becomes a man."
  • Slashed Throat: Leatherface kills Bailey in this way.
  • So Proud of You: In a rare villainous example, Hoyt begins to show this for Leatherface as he embraces his bloodier tendencies more and more. When Leatherface runs off into the night after Chrissie, chainsaw roaring, Hoyt simply stares after him with a look of impressed awe, stating "There comes a time when a boy becomes a man..."
  • Start of Darkness: The film shows how the entire Hewitt family turned into killers
  • Stealth Expert: Chrissie is pretty adept at sneaking around without being detected, first when she avoids capture after the car crash, and later when she's trying to rescue the others. Also Leatherface, given Offscreen Teleportation and Danger Takes A Back Seat.
  • Villains Out Shopping: Luda Mae and the Tea Lady share a scene where they sit and talk about iced tea like any pair of Southern ladies, paying no mind to Bailey, who has been tied to the table leg at their feet.
  • What You Are in the Dark: Dean admitting that he's the draft dodger to Hoyt to try and save Eric even after seeing what Hoyt had put Eric through and knowing it will be his turn.
  • You Are Worth Hell: Chrissie going back to try and save the others, especially Eric, despite multiple opportunities to run, even as it becomes clear what the Hewitts will do if they catch her.