As a lifelong horror freak, I have a very healthy respect and affection for the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Frankly I think it's one of the only movies that actively "scared" me in any memorable way. So I struggled throughthesequels and kept my hopes high for the Michael Bay-produced remake that hit the screens a few years back. Despite my early and extensive skepticism, I found myself rather impressed with Marcus Nispel's slick-yet-grungy remake. Do I think it comes even close to approaching the original flick? Hell no, but I do think it works pretty damn well in its own right.

My fellow purists often disagree with me (sometimes derisively so), but I have no problem admitting that I really liked the 2003 remake. Having said that, I cared very little for its follow-up, the redundant, generic and rather dreary prequel that's cleverly called The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning.

First complaint right out of the chute: We were pretty much promised an "origin story," but in truth all that TCM:TB delivers in this department is an "origin prologue" -- and it's a pretty arid and uneventful one at that. Once the opening credits draw to a close, TCM:TB could just as easily be a prequel, a sequel or (yes) yet another remake. That's how much creativity has been poured into this quickie flick.