Texas Chainsaw Massacre : The Next Generation title

AKA: Texas Chainsaw Massacre 4 : The Next Generation, The Return of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Tag Line : If looks could kill, he wouldn't need a chainsaw.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre : The Next Generation There seems to be a trend with Texas Chainsaw movies, in that the odd numbered films are good but the even numbered films are awful and that is certainly the case here.

Teenage schoolgirl Jenny (played by a then unknown Renee Zellweger) and 3 of her school chums are on their way back from the school prom, when they have an accident with another motorist on a deserted backroad.

Going off in search of help they come across an old farmhouse which happens to be inhabited by Leatherface (Robert Jacks) and some more of his psychopathic relatives. One of which being a then unknown Mathew MacConoughey, who plays the part of Vilmer the garage mechanic.

The rest of the film is made up of scene's rehashed from parts 1,2 and 3 as people are hung on meathooks, tied up and terrorised, bashed with sledgehammers and thrown in freezers. The film was supposed to be a black comedy, like part 2, but fails miserably. There is no real plot, the antics of the psychotic family are totally unfathomable and to confuse matters further, it turns out that they are in the employ of some chap called Rothman, who hires them to terrorise people (what?). The reason for this is never explained fully, except that Rothman is part of some powerful terrorist group or something, but there is no attempt made to substantiate the relevance of this plot twist.

Leatherface spends half the film dressed in drag for some bizarre reason and does nothing but scream through virtually the whole film. As it is, the film is barely watchable due to the amount of unnecessary screaming and squawking done by the entire cast. There is one funny scene, where they find Vilmer's robotic knee calliper is adversely affected by the TV remote control, so Jenny and the others start  zapping him with the remote so they can get away. But the rest of the film is hardly worth mentioning.

Written and directed by Kim Henkal, who also produced the first film, this is a real stinker, so I would strongly suggest giving this one a miss, or if you do decide to give it a go, then try renting as opposed to buying.

Overall remarks : 4/10.

Terrifying Trivia.

  • Mathew MacConoughey remarked that this was the most fun he'd ever had making a film.

  • Robert Jacks got the role of Leatherface for this instalment.

  • The film has a number of guest appearances by original cast members at the end. The Sheriff was played by John Dugan, who was also "grandfather" in the first film. The hospital porter was played by Paul Partain who was Franklin in the original and the girl he was wheeling down the hall in the bed (listed in the credits as anonymous) was in actuality Marilyn Burns, who played Sally Hardesty.

  • Robert Jacks and Rene Zellweger apparently had to call a meeting with the director, because they were both so battered and beat up after weeks of shooting they couldn't take it any more.

  • The movie was originally filmed under the title "Return of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre" however, distributors Columbia/Tri-Star shelved the movie for two years before eventually releasing it in a re-edited format, under the title "Texas Chainsaw Massacre : The Next Generation".

  • This re-edited version missed out part of the intro, showing Jenny (Zellweger)'s Step-Father being abusive towards her, removed a scene where one of the girls is set on fire, and shortened or re-cut most scenes throughout the film for either time or pacing reasons.

  • The original directors approved version has to date only been released on Japanese laserdisc, under it's original title "The Return of..". All other releases under the name "The Next Generation" have been the shorter, re-edited version.

  • The reason the film was shelved for so long in the US was apparently because Columbia/Tri-Star initially wanted to release it after Rene Zellweger's appearance in the film "Jerry MacGuire", but then Mathew MacConaughey tried to prevent the film from being released theatrically. The film was eventually released to cinema's in the US, but only had a limited run after test audiences were not particularly thrilled with it.

Extra Info.

Cast & Crew.

Cover Gallery.


Buy Online.

Buy it from Amazon

Buy the UK DVD.

Buy it at Amazon.Com

Buy the US DVD.

Notes on affiliate sites.


Other films in the series.


All Time Classics.

Reviews A-Z.

Reviews index. Home. Menu.