Thursday, October 17, 2019

The Faculty (1998)

The faculty at Herrington High School are out of this world!  Not because they don't believe in homework, because they're aliens!  An unlikely group of students ban together to prevent them from infecting the entire community after observing their bizarre behavior.  Really super conveniently, the drug that rebel Zeke manufactures out of his parent's shed is just the thing to take them down.  Balance is restored and school is back in session.

It's The Breakfast Club (1985) meets Invasion of the Body Snatchers.  I imagine that's how Kevin Williamson pitched his sci-fi horror script.  Though in 1998, he probably didn't have to pitch anything thanks to his near perfect track record consisting of Scream (1996)Scream 2 (1997) and I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997).  I remember hoping to go 3 for 3 with horror movies I saw during my winter break in college, but my first viewing of The Faculty sort of felt like detention ;-)  But you can file this under films that have grown on me over the years.  The DVD release on the other hand, deserves a failing grade.

The Faculty was filmed in Lockhart, Austin and San Marcos, TX 

Location: Herrington High School Football Field
Address: 906 Center Street, Lockhart, TX  Lockhart High School

Location: Herrington High School
Address: 1102 S Congress Avenue, Austin, TX  Texas School for the Deaf

Unfortunately the main location for the school is not accessible to the general public.  The school has received a major facelift since filming.  Here is a shot (not matching) from the road..

Location: Casey's House
Address: 4211 Avenue F, Austin, TX

Thanks to Paul H for finding this location...

Location: The Roadblock
Address: N Main Street & E San Antonio Street, Lockhart, TX

Corky's Apartment from Waiting For Guffman (1997) is located just across the street.
Location: Zeke's House
Address: 916 W Hopkins Street, San Marcos, TX

Thanks again to Paul H for finding this location...

Locations Visited: October 2019

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)

Reports of grave robbing sends Sally Hardesty, her brother and some friends to check on an ancestor.  After picking up and kicking out a creepy hitchhiker on the way home, they stop by the old family homestead and discover a nearby residence.  Much to their dismay, it belongs to the cannibalistic Sawyer family.  And you thought you had neighbor problems.  One by one they fall prey to the chainsaw-wielding Leatherface.  Sally descends into madness as she chased, tormented and terrorized but manages to escape, never to be the same.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is hailed by many to be the greatest horror movie of all time.  While my vote goes to Halloween (1978), the film delivers on all levels and is surprisingly light on gore.  The franchise is still revving along ;-) and will probably see another reboot at some point.  Special thanks to Paul Slattery at Then & Now Movie Locations for being a personal tour guide for some these locations.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre was filmed in Leander, Hutto, Bastrop and Round Rock, TX

Location: The Cemetery
Address: 400 N Bagdad Road, Leander, TX  Bagdad Cemetery

Located near the east entrance...

Location: The Hitchhiker Gets Picked Up
Address: Across from 101 Farm to Market Road 685, Hutto, TX

Location: The Gas Station
Address: 1073 Texas 304, Bastrop, TX

"The Gas Station" is owned by a fan of the movie.  After a long day of location hunting, you can sit down for some bbq, look at some props and even stay the night in one of their cabins.  Unfortunately, I was there on a Monday when there were closed so I wasn't able to see the inside...

Location: The Grandparent's House
Address: Hester's Crossing Road & Country Road 172, Round Rock, TX

The grandparent's house was actually across the way from the original location of the Sawyer house.  It burned down in the late 70s and this area has since gone under a major development...

Location: The Sawyer House
Address: 1010 King Court, Kingsland, TX

Today, the Sawyer House is the Grand Central Cafe, serving up delicious food made from fresh ingredients (insert visiting fans joke here).  The house was moved from its original location in Round Rock in the late 90s.  It's a bit of a haul off I-35 but definitely worth the trip.  It's even more worth it if the place is open when you visit.  Unfortunately, I had gone on a Tuesday when it wasn't.  Note to fans - don't go early in the week to visit these locations.  Luckily the door was glass, so I was able to at least get one iconic interior shot... 

Location: The Sawyer House (Original Location)
Address: Hester's Crossing Road & Country Road 172, Round Rock, TX

Before being moved to Kingsland, here is where the house originally rested along with the road where Sally makes her getaway...

Locations Visited: October 2019