Saturday, September 1, 2012
Evil Wears Many Faces
I don't know what kind of approach I expected the marketing for this movie to take but this is definitely grislier than I expected so thumbs-up for that. Back when the '03 remake was released, the poster was a real ho-hum affair. Remember?
I guess they were trying to stay classy, what with remaking a classic, but when you're working with one of the most brilliantly exploitative titles in the history of horror, why not incorporate that spirit of exploitation in your advertizing? After all, it worked for the original:
To be fair, we're talking entirely different times. And hey, the remake's poster was still arguably better than the poster for TCM 2, which - for reasons I don't think have ever been explained - spoofed The Breakfast Club.
But anyhow, back to this new poster...
It's ironic that the most graphically gruesome Chainsaw poster yet is for the first film in the franchise to have no Massacre in the title but dropping "Massacre" is no more offensive than squeezing another buck out of Hooper's masterpiece in the first place so I'll let it slide.
My reaction to this poster is pretty simple - I like how straight-up nasty it is. It reminds me of the kind of garish VHS box art that would've demanded that I take a movie home back in the day. It revels in surface level grossness rather than promising to explore true terror (we'll see how the film itself is) but my inner adolescent will always have room for crassly marketed horror.
As genre franchises go, Texas Chainsaw Massacre doesn't have the best track record but it's no Howling or Return of the Living Dead either. It's true that post-Hooper, there's never been a great TCM movie but when you're talking horror sequels, "great" seldom enters into the equation. Sometimes the closest you get to that is with the marketing material.
That's not ideal, but you've got to take great where you can get it.