|How about that violence Mr. I can't identify you|
For the family of savages, a parallel can be drawn to that of Tobe Hooper's The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974). The family's traits are mentally unhinged, are physically disfigured, live in shoddy conditions and live off of what they can get. The difference between the two is that Hooper looked to horrify his viewers without giving away too much. He let the imagination run wild to what his antagonists could do. Craven on the other hand enjoys exploiting that to the fullest extent. An example of this is rape. It isn't as graphically shown like it was in The Last House on the Left (1972) but it still is nothing that was needed to be filmed. Why does Craven enjoy portraying these scenes in such a tasteless manner? However, the one plus that Wes Craven always includes in his direction are his characters’ ability to fight back.
Yes, this family gets damaged to an extent that is irreversible, but they also don't back down. When the family begins to fight back, that's when things become entertaining. Although a character may scared, watching them have the courage to retaliate is always more enjoyable that always watching them suffer. The only issue with this, is that the characters aren't that memorable to begin with. With this, the ability to like or feel anything for these characters feels too late in the running time. As for the cannibalistic family, there is some background given by an old farmer but even then, it isn't disclosed in a clear manner. Something about a monster baby that was left out in the desert to die but didn't die? That's what I got, and if I didn't miss anything, who exactly turned out to be the monster baby all grown up?
|Mr. Michael Berryman! This guy I know!|
It has a few cast members that stand out and has some ok elements to its story, one of them being fear caused by isolation. As a whole though, it's just another film where Wes Craven makes you sit through a bunch of classless violence.
Points Earned --> 5:10