Quick “review”: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)

Synopsis: Five travelers in search of gas come across a seemingly abandoned house in the rural outskirts of the Lone Star State. What they find is a family of homicidal maniacs – and one of the most iconic characters in all of horror history.

Controversy: For its veritable smorgasbord of horrors, Hooper’s film was banned in Brazil, Chile, Finland, France, Iceland, Ireland, Norway, Singapore, Sweden, and what was then West Germany. He had somewhat better luck in the states, though disgusted walkouts were reported in San Francisco, and just north in Ottawa, local police forced two theaters to stop running the film or face morality charges. The film was not merely banned in Britain; the Board of Film Censors blackballed it so hard that even including the words “chainsaw” in a movie title was strictly verboten. Despite ruffling feathers around the globe, Hooper was able to annually re-release prints of his film for eight years after it premiered, becoming a word-of-mouth sensation in the process.

Rating: 8