House Of 1000 Corpses (2003)

DVD Cover (Lions Gate)
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Overall Rating 67%
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Connections: House Of 1000 Corpses

Two young couples traveling across the backwoods of Texas searching for urban legends of murder end up as prisoners of a bizarre and sadistic backwater family of serial killers. --IMDb
Review by Chad
Added: August 28, 2004
Four kids are traveling cross-country, doing research for a book about various roadside oddities and such. They come across a place called Captain Spaulding's Museum Of Oddities and decide to check it out, since Spaulding (Sid Haig) just so happens to also sell gas and fried chicken. Spaulding has a ride setup on location, which shows various serial killers and such "in action"... at the end of the ride is a person known as Doctor Satan. They get a bit of the back-story about it, and Spaulding tells them about how the tree where Doctor Satan was hung is located just down the road a bit. Of course they want to go see it, so Spaulding draws them up a map and sends them on their way. While driving towards their destination, they come across a hitchhiker out in the rain and decide to pick her up. She introduces herself as Baby (Sheri Moon), and comes off as being quite the psycho. Things are going as smooth as can be, until the car gets a flat tire. Baby says that she lives just up the road a bit and that her brother has a tow-truck, so they can help the kids out. They reluctantly agree, and head off towards the house. Once there, they meet up with the family that lives here... Mother Firefly (Karen Black), Otis (Bill Moseley), Tiny (Matthew McGrory) and Grampa Hugo (Dennis Fimple). It doesn't take too long for the teens to find out that they've come across a family of psychos, and it also doesn't take very long for things to get quite out of hand.

Rob Zombie brought over his experience with music videos and his love of classic horror into the world of movies, and the end result was something that you'll either love or hate; there's really not much room for a middle ground here. Rob got a lot of inspiration from the classics, such as "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre" and "The Hills Have Eyes", and it really shows with the way the storyline progresses; so, if you aren't too keen on horror films from the sixties and seventies, you probably won't enjoy this one either. He combines that classic style with his music video experience, giving us some very unique editing and color schemes, which results in a pretty damned great movie in my eyes. As good as that music video style made the movie, it also resulted in one of the only problems I had with the film. There's a small number of scenes and subplots where things move along too fast, with little or no explanation given on what's happening, and in some scenes, the actors seemed like they were rushing to finish up their scenes quicker than they should have. This could have been a result of the cuts that Rob was forced to make, but nonetheless, this was pretty minor in the grand scheme of things. Other than that minor gripe and some select scenes, things move along at a nice speed, with the storyline being presented at a nice pace.

The cast involved with this film is what really makes things great. Instead of doing the typical rounding up the usual cast of the WB teen-stars of the week, Rob cast some of the veterans of the genres and brought them in to do what they do best. Sid Haig definitely steals the show here as Captain Spaulding, having the best character and line-delivery in the movie by far. Sadly enough, he doesn't really fit into the grand scheme of things and therefore, isn't given a whole lot of time to shine. This was understandable from the viewpoint of the storyline and such, but damned if I didn't want to see some more scenes with him. The rest of the cast certainly didn't slouch in their roles, however; Bill Moseley as Otis was beyond great, and certainly came in second only behind Haig for star of the film. Karen Black as Mother Firefly was also pretty nice, though not quite up to the level of the rest of the cast here. Sheri Moon as Baby pulled out a surprisingly great performance in her first non-music-video role, and came off as being a highly enjoyable screen presence. I'm not quite sure if it was intentional the way Rob Zombie cast a set of horror veterans and pitted them against a group of fresh-faced teen actors, but it came off as being a bit of an old-school versus new-school battle in the end, with the veterans winning hands down. The teens weren't too terrible in their roles, just bland and boring for the most part.

Overall, a highly enjoyable modern horror film for those who enjoy the classics in the genre. This certainly isn't just another Scream-fest, this is a very well thought-out horror film and should be greatly appreciated for fans of the classics. This was the first film for Rob Zombie, and if it's any indication of how his future movies will end up being, he's destined to become a legend in the field. 10/10 from myself.
Damion Darkheart #1: Damion Darkheart - added 09/07/2004, 08:22 AM
I thought it kicked ass too. Fun bit of trivia: Rob Zombie had to cut the movie nearly in half twice because the original was too graphic and was thought that audiences wouldnt be able to handle it. I'd kill to see a directors cut of this
Chad #2: Chad - added 09/07/2004, 07:16 PM
It wasn't cut in half, I think it was a grand total of 30 minutes cut. Still a lot, but from what I've heard, just wait until October / November for the director's cut.
Crispy #3: Crispy - added 09/09/2004, 06:51 PM
So maybe i'm the only one bothered by the fact that this movie makes about as much sense as microwaving a poptart. Seriously, the plot was basically a 95% robbery of Texas Chainsaw Massacre with some extra, EXTREMELY random crap thrown in to give it a Rob Zombie feel to it. Personally, i gave this movie a 2/10, and those 2 points come from Captain Spaulding
wikkidpiggykilla #4: wikkidpiggykilla - added 12/05/2004, 06:58 PM
I love this movie one of the best Ive see in a long time and fuck you crispy this movie is the shit Rob Zombie is too fuckin cool hope he will make another movie sometime I havent seen the direstors cut but I sure will I have seen it on dvd either but i imagine there is sum kick ass xtras on the in close Id like to once again say FUCK CRISPY if you dont like it dont watch it THE END?
Symx #5: Symx - added 02/04/2005, 07:17 PM
I havent seen this movie, but I know a few people that have and they said it was terrible. The guy makes crappy music, so I'm sure he makes crappy movies too. I'm going to check it out sometime anyway
Crispy #6: Crispy - added 02/28/2005, 11:15 AM
I dont watch it, I've seen it once and found thouroughly mindboggling that anyone can praise this shit as good as it was
blasphemous girl #7: blasphemous girl - added 04/16/2005, 12:05 AM
this movie was ... odd. but proves Rob Zombie has talent outside of music as well. i probably wouldn't buy this movie.. but i'd watch it again.
Placebo13 #8: Placebo13 - added 06/21/2005, 02:19 PM
Well, I liked it.
crAckerr #9: crAckerr - added 07/28/2005, 05:36 PM
First time i watched it i didn't really like it, but i watched it a second time and i started enjoying it for what it is, whatever that may be.
Ginose #10: Ginose - added 12/17/2005, 12:19 PM
this was one of the greatest horror films I've seen in ages. I love Rob Zombie, both his music and now his directing. I wasn't to sure I'd like it, my freind Matt said he didn't care for it. then again he dosen't really like horror at all. I found a used copy for $7.99 and watched it. I came to school the following day and popped Matt upside his head. Though this movie does share alot of similarityies with Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 (including Bill Mosely) it was a greatly original flick. I loved it and I'm dying to see Devil's Rejects... God give me strength.
Dametria #11: Dametria - added 04/24/2007, 11:07 AM
LOVE this movie! It has everything a horror movie should have and then some! Great gore, great characters. I have my very own copy aurographed my Sid Haig "Shit the Bed!"
Tristan #12: Tristan - added 09/25/2007, 10:02 PM
Well I gave it another shot. Loved Sid Haig, and...loved Sid Haig. He was pretty much the only thing that made this movie watchable. I know what Zombie was trying to do with this movie, but he just made it too over the top and "out there". If he'd toned it down a bit, and had less than 1000 visual gags in each scene, maybe. It was just a clusterfuck of ideas that didn't work out. 3/10 is my official rating, and those 3 are for Sid Haig.
danimigra #13: danimigra - added 03/15/2008, 05:54 PM
This one and The devils reject are so far best movies ever..!!!! Rob zonbie rulez..!!!!!
C L #14: C L - added 04/24/2008, 01:35 AM
I love this movie. Rob Zombie is some kind of twisted freakin' genius for me, because pretty much everything he touches impresses me.
duck #15: duck - added 04/24/2008, 02:19 PM
zombie sucks as a director, he'd be better off directing porn, where his stupid story lines are accepted more
Sarcastos #16: Sarcastos - added 04/24/2008, 02:54 PM
And duck, you'd be better off sticking to watching only porn. hairy big bushed 70's porn, and remember to think of mommy.
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