6. Relentlessness / Verité. Midway through this search mission a shock occurs, and for the remaining 32 minutes of the film, Sally, and the viewer along with her, experience some of the most unrelenting brutality ever put to celluloid in the name of fiction, and if there's a non-fiction film that can match it, I hope some people got arrested. Chainsaw's two most powerful twists on the slasher formula are one, relentlessness, and two, that it feels like cinema verité. Though there is absurdism and black comedy in these sequences, it still seems like a plausible vision of what being abducted by maniacs would be like (Ed Neal's performance as The Hitchhiker has some definite Mansonoid vibes). Marilyn Burns should have gotten a Best Actress Oscar -- her acting is naturalistic throughout Chainsaw, but especially and tortuously so in the last third of the film, as her psychosis overwhelms her and the screams and pleas cannot stop. At this point in the film, Sally herself becomes a monster, a blood-drenched and deranged symptom of brutality, just as scary to look at as her tormentors.

7. The Soundtrack. And, as long as we're giving out Oscars, one HAS to be given to Wayne Bell and Tobe Hooper for their original score, a harsh noise soundtrack created with crude home-made percussion and electronics. One of the most memorable tones in the film was made by sliding a pitchfork down a piece of sheet metal. There has never been a CD or LP release of this stuff, and apparently, the music does not exist in a mix separate from the movie soundtrack, meaning you can't hear it in any format without getting the dialogue and incidental sounds of the film. This is appropriate, because the music matches the visuals so perfectly a lot of viewers FEEL it long before they even really notice it. (The band Wolf Eyes cites this music as an inspiration, which makes sense, not to mention that the ratbirdskull artwork on the Dead Hills picture disc looks like something that might have been hanging in the chicken room.)