Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation

Renee Zellweger and Matthew McConaughey try to out-bad-act each other in the luridly abysmal third sequel to The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. The low-grade amusement of watching these two is that the movie, which was shot in 1993 (before, perhaps, even their own mothers dreamed they’d be appearing on magazine covers), becomes an inadvertent testament to the Faustian mechanics of superstardom. (If you want to attain mega-fame, Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation seems to be saying, this is how low you may have to stoop to get there.) Zellweger, in pearls, tousled hair, and a grimy prom dress, is the virginal, baby-cheeked nerd whose ”innocence” protects her from a cult of cannibalistic psycho varmints. McConaughey, as a madman with an electronically operated false leg, seems to have studied the worst performances of Woody Harrelson and Dennis Hopper; he sweats, cackles, pops his eyes, lacerates his flesh, and wraps his meanest drawl around lines like ”Do you think all ah wanna do is keel you?!” Leatherface, the fat butcher-boy demon, is, by now, about as scary as a 9-year-old in a Leatherface Halloween costume. The movie recapitulates the absurdist tabloid-redneck comedy of the great, original Chainsaw without a hint of its primal terror. C-

Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation
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