|Welcome to the U.N. Mr. Ambassador!|
I have, however, had the Chainsaw movies on the brain this week. I've also been fascinated recently by the fact that Movies At Dog Farm has been getting hits from foreign countries, something that it just never occurred to me might happen when I launched this blog on Thanksgiving day, 2012. The two seemingly disparate topics have been marinating in my brainpan together, and I arrived at the following conclusion: director Tobe Hooper's The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) is the most uniquely American franchise spawning horror movie around.
The United States is a big country. I believe the U.S. is still imagined by much of the world beyond our borders as a Wild West free-for-all that tolerates - and even encourages - an egocentric and often violently destructive self-sufficiency for the individual. In particular, I suspect that to much of the world the great state of Texas epitomizes the U.S. as a whole. It's perceived as a vast, lawless frontier populated by loud, arrogant, gun-toting, giant-belt-buckle-wearing blowhards with cowboy hats. This is an erroneous stereotype, of course - so please, no hate mail - but one that our history, media, and (let's be honest) our interaction with other countries often reinforces.
|TCM's Grandpa, conserving energy|
Consider, also, how the character of The Cook (Jim Siedow) is more concerned with the inconvenience of replacing a chainsawed door than with the wholesale slaughter that's been occurring in his home all day. The slaughterhouse is closed, and the gas station has no gas. The Sawyers are doing what they feel they must to survive. The entire family's actions are based upon a flawed morality that suggests that because they're doing what they must to get by that it's kinda sorta O.K.
|TCM's deceptively tranquil farmhouse|
|Leatherface pauses for reflection|
. . . and really, what's more uniquely American than the whole family joining together at the dinner table for some quality time?
Posted by Brandon Early