2022 Movie Reviews: Texas Chainsaw Massacre / The Tinder Swindler / Everything is Terrible!: Kidz Klub

The quality of the stuff I watched this week really runs the gamut between very good and dog shit terrible. Guess which of these movies is terrible. HINT – It’s not the one with the word “terrible” in it.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022)

It’s hard to imagine a more creatively bankrupt reboot of a horror franchise in the last ten years than Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Just kidding, there are several, which doesn’t make TCM2022 stand out, but I hate it nonetheless. This one, like all the post-2000s sequels, is more or less a reboot or direct sequel of the original, sharing no continuity with the “films” that came before it. This one is very 2022, minus Covid-19, centering around a gaggle of boring, sheltered rich kids who are gentrifying Leatherface’s neighborhood. They even have the audacity to throw in a post-school-shooting-trauma backstory, a heavy mic drop the movie is comically incapable of weathering. Instead, it focuses on a very dumb revenge plot. When one of the kids accidentally give Leatherface’s mom(?) a fatal heart attack by trying to physically remove her from her own fucking house, so they can take down a problematic confederate flag and replace it with a JoJo Siwa poster, Leatherface springs into action and begins caving in skulls, sawing off limbs and making masks out of zit-covered faces. Taking place in 2022, this would make Leatherface in his eighties. Besides from having silver fox hair, he moves shockingly well for a man that far into life, especially since we get the impression he just hangs out with his mom indoors all day. He’s not getting any exercise and yet his muscles haven’t deteriorated at all. Sorry, I know it’s stupid to get fixated on this but it’s annoying they don’t even “wink-wink” address it. Anyway, what ensues is pure cinematic crap, completely devoid of any chills, thrills or interesting characters, all culminating in Leatherface boarding a party bus and chainsawing hipsters, while one Instagram live streams it while taunting “You’re gonna get cancelled, bro!” Grade: D (Netflix)

The Tinder Swindler

I love that this documentary exists solely so it can take the jam out of this asshole/coward con artist’s donut. The Tinder Swindler follows the story of a too-good-to-be-true Israeli dreamboat claiming to be a multi-billionaire Diamond Business heir who preys on vulnerable, love-(and maybe money, let’s be honest) hungry women, by making them fall in love with his false promises and faked wealth and then demands they send him money. He’s a manipulative sociopath and you never get tired of hating him, you just wish they dived deeper into the lives of his victims. The most interesting character, a victim who eventually brought the fucker down, isn’t even introduced until the last twenty minutes of the doc. She’s a real hoot and will inspire many to jump from their couch, exclaiming, “You go girl!” As far as Netflix documentaries about con artists, they recently released a much superior and more interesting three episode miniseries called The Puppet Master. I’d argue that show was more about the victims than the ego-maniacal villain. Also I would have given this doc a ‘B’ if not for the stupid title. It really takes the air out of how serious this was. Grade: B- (Netflix)

Everything is Terrible!: KIDZ KLUB

Everything is Terrible! is a collective of incredibly gifted and hilarious film editors, who leverage bizarre and little seen special interest VHS tapes from the 90s, and some home movies, to compile these surreal hour-long compilations. There’s been one on Satanic Panic, bad/problematic amateur 90s stand-up and even one on cringe-y DIY hip hop videos. The latest in their collection is Kidz Klub, a brisk, 60-something minute compilation of 90s and early 00s low-budget kids programming that ranges from deeply fundamentalist Christian to just plain weird. With the power of editing they can manipulate messages and themes to fit their own strange and erratic make shift narrative they map out for these. Kidz Klub is great because it really gives us a window into the culture and hive mind of the time especially around utilization of technology. From uncomfortable and poorly produced sing-a-longs about Jesus to a filmed kids’ workshop about how to give a proper Hitler salute, Everything is Terrible! reveals more about human nature than almost any mainstream American offering. Kidz Klub stands as one of their absolute best and most consistently funny compilations, right up there with 2Everything2Terrible and Doggiewoggiez! Poochiewoochiez! It’s a gift for the whole family! Grade: B+ (DVD available for purchase on their website for $19.99)

Also Streaming or In Theaters

The boys are back abusing their penises in the latest and arguably best theatrical Jackass offering

Jackass Forever (In Theaters)

Licorice Pizza (In Theaters)

The Power of the Dog (Netflix)

Drive My Car (HBOMax on March 2nd)

West Side Story (Disney+ on March 2nd)

Agathe Rouselle plays a serial killer who fucks a car and gets pregnant in France’s Titane

Titane (Hulu)

Spencer (Hulu)

Nightmare Alley (Hulu & HBOMax)

Pig (Hulu)

The Beta Test (Hulu)

Rachel Sennott is gorgin’ bagels in Shiva Baby

Shiva Baby (HBOMax)

Barb & Star Go to Vista Del Mar (Hulu)

House of Gucci ($5.99 rental on Amazon)

Don’t Look Up (Netflix)

The Last Duel (HBOMax)

Olivia Colman tries to calm a Jersey Shore-ish Dakota Johnson in The Lost Daughter

The Lost Daughter (Netflix)

Passing (Netflix)

Old ($5.99 rental on Amazon)

Dune (In Theaters & $5.99 rental on Amazon)

Encanto (Disney+)

CODA (AppleTV)

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