House of a 1000 Corpses

House of 1000 Corpses

Released 2003

Review by: Fiji Mermaid

This is Rob Zombie’s horror directorial debut and precursor to 2005’s “Devil’s Rejects” movie. This film is about 4 young people that are on going around visiting strange roadside attractions to write about. Their plan is to write a book documenting the places they have visited. Early in the film, they find themselves at Captain Spaulding’s gas station/haunted house murder ride. After buying some gas and chatting with the freaky Captain, played wonderfully by actor Sid Haig, they take a ride through his little horror show. The final exhibit depicts the local legend Dr. Satan. The kids are very interested in visiting the location of his crimes. With a map provided to them from Spaulding the embark on this location. This is the first in many dumb things the kids do that cause them to fall victim to the evil doers of the film.

On the way to the house they find a hitchhiker that is standing in the rain and they give her a lift. She says she lives near Dr. Satan’s location and she’ll take them there. Some freak dressed up as a wolf shoots out their car’s tire and one of the guys goes with the hitchhiker back to her house to call for help. The other three are left waiting in the car. The house of the hitchhiker is dressed up in old junk, horror memorabilia, and other weird items. The kids who stayed with the car are eventually taken to the house by a tow truck and the man who shot out their tire. They are then treated to one of the strangest families on film and their weird behavior and love of stage performances.

The kids finally decide to get the hell out of the house when their car is fixed and on their way out are attacked by family members. One of the kids is killed early on and the rest are forced to dress as bunnies and take part in a strange burial ceremony…. Needless to say to say it all ends in madness and confusion. At least that’s how I felt after I saw it.

Overall not a bad modern horror flick, but I didn’t find it scary or attempting to be scary. It seemed to be more focused on gore and graphic violence, which in and of themselves aren’t bad things, but I like when it is a bit scary or at least trying to be scary. There were just a few too many elements of humor here to keep me scared. The film seemed to have too many, been there done that situations, that I think Rob Zombie was doing as an homage to his favorite horror flicks of the 70s, but I felt it was a bit too unoriginal. The evil characters however did have more personality to them, than say killer families found in the Texas Chainsaw Massacre series of films. Devil’s Rejects came out as a sequel to this and was a better film overall, which dealt with the killers on the run and not confined to the house, which I found more enjoyable.

Theatrical Trailer

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