1974 cult classic “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” revving back to bloody glory in a 4K Blu-ray

by on May 11, 2016

Stephan Jukic – May 11, 2016

In a new 4K Blu-ray movie landscape to which a number of old but awesome famous titles are being brought back to new and colorful life with 4K ultra HD restorations, it’s good to see a bit of classic horror also making the cut.

“The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” is a great example of exactly this potential trend at work and the 1974 cult horror movie is now being remastered in 4K resolution for a home video experience like none other this film has ever had.

Tobe Hooper’s now famous horror movie has spawned numerous sequels and has also gone through a major motion picture remake that hit theaters in 2003, but none of these other spinoffs quite match the nostalgic power of the original 1974 version in their nostalgic power for ardent fans of cult horror cinema.

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Thus, for these fans and also for younger generations of moviegoers, a company called Turbine Media Group is working on a 4K ultra HD Blu-ray disc release of the movie and with the edition of a 13.1 Auro-3D sound mix.

According to the original press release for the movie’s 4K restoration, the Auro-3D mix for “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” delivers “an exciting three-dimensional soundscape thanks to the addition of a height layer in front, above and all around the listener”. In other words, as the press release states, the audio in this 4K restoration of the scream-filled horror movie is designed to mimic cinematic sound in a home theater environment as closely as possible. The movie can however also be enjoyed in 5.1-channel surround, According to Auro.

As for the movie itself, for those of you who might not be so familiar with this classic motion picture, “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” is an American horror film which was directed by Tobe Hooper and tells the story of five young friends whose peaceful road trip turns into a nightmare when they unwittingly fall victim to a family of vicious and severely disturbed cannibals.

Even now, the film serves as one of the founding pillars of several creative tendencies in the slasher film genre. These include the use of power tools as murder weapons (the now famous chainsaw that belongs to the film’s main villain, Leatherface) and the creation of a killer antagonist who is a hulking and faceless but vaguely monstrous figure (Leatherface once again). For a refresher on these effects and the movies gritty horror feel, here’s an HD trailer:

In simple terms, this 1974 movie was one of those which redefined the limits of violence in horror cinema and even now still delivers enough shocking moments to make modern, gore-accustomed audiences stir in their seats. As for Leatherface himself, he’s become almost as famous as Freddy Krueger or Jason Vorhees in popular culture.

The restoration work for the cheap original 16mm film stock which was used to make “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” due to budgetary constraints that the director dealt with back in 1974 resulted in a massive amount of work for the 4K remastering process, with the team who worked on the new version of the movie having to deal with “tens of thousands” of imperfections, tears, cooked splice marks and dirt marks in the film stock.

Nonetheless, the work paid off and while the newly restored version of the movie is free of ugly errors in the original film, it still keeps its gritty, grainy feel, as is befitting a grim 42 year old movie about blood, guts and cannibal murderers.

From what we know so far, the 4K Blu-ray version of this iconic slasher film will be getting released as of May the 27th in select markets.

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  • MyBorDy
    May 13, 2016 at 1:53 pm

    So quick! This 27th May? Really? Bonus features?


  • Bobsyouruncle
    May 13, 2016 at 4:56 pm

    Is this not coming out in the US? Why not?!


    • Stephen
      May 14, 2016 at 9:53 am

      That’s right, it seems that for now it’s not and that’s just downright strange, and disappointing, especially for horror fans with 4K TVs. Though we can be almost certain that it will at some point reach the US market, along with other older film reel titles that are being upconverted to 4K digital for Blu-ray slowly.


      • MyBorDy
        May 15, 2016 at 12:45 am

        But if the UHD player is region free (there is no region code), you can get the German edition without hesitations.


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