The Devil's Rejects review (possible spoilers)

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The Devil's Rejects review (possible spoilers)

Post by stigodump » Thu May 18, 2006 5:22 pm

I'm a bit of a movie buff. I happen to like horror films ranging from your run of the mill Nighmare on Elm Street to Susperia to Evil Dead Trap to Dawn of the Dead to stuff made on a budget of a fiver. A whole gamut of horror from around the the world. From the crap to the crap but good to the brilliant. So it was inevitable I would eventually get to taste Rob Zombie's attempts at the genre despite initial doubts.

I've never listened to much music by Rob Zombie but what I have listened to seemed ok but I'm not really a fan. It was with much trepidation that I watched House of 1000 Corpses, Rob Zombies first attempt at a feature film despite being no stranger to working behind the camera. I came away with mixed feelings. It's influencies are obvious. The most obvious being Texas Chainsaw Massacre and has a very amateur feeling to it whether by fault (what with being his first film) or design (replicating horror films of the 80's). It just feels like the horror of old but there's something wrong. It feels disjointed. The end sequence seems to come from another film which oddly enough reminds of Japanese and Italian horror and has the ability of instilling a sense of WTF in the viewer but tries just too hard to be weird. Yet despite my mixed feelings I was looking forward to The Devil's Rejects.

The Devil's Rejects is the sequel to House of 1000 Corpses and follows the exploits of the Firefly family as they go on the run after the law come a calling as a result of numerous disappearances in the area. What follows is a sometimes funny, frequently horrific and at times repulsively voyeuristic journey as they attempt to escape the law led by a Sheriff who starts out law abiding but gradually becomes twisted into the very people he's hunting.

The Devil's Rejects is a far better film than Rob Zombie's first entry. It would appear that anything he learned in House of 1000 Corpses he implemented here. Any mistakes, he corrected. He even ignored a plot element in House that I personally thought didn't work and Rejects is all the better for it. A special mention must go to Director of Photography, Phil Parmet who has done wonders here and the soundtrack has a much more earthy country rock feel to it. Three of the songs used are by Terry Reid two of which from the album Seed of Memory and are particular stand outs in a pretty good soundtrack. Even Lynyrd Skynyrd's "other" song (Free Bird as opposed to the overused but excellent Sweet Home Alabama) gets used to excellent effect. Bill Moseley reprising his role as Otis has this time done away with his Chop Top from Texas Chainsaw 2 character he reprised in House of 1000 Corpses and this time gives a much more measured performance. Sheri Moon still insists on flashing her "builders arse" at every opportunity, not that I mind and her squeeling laugh has at least been turned down a notch. Sid Haig gives a much more sinister portrayal in this. For example when he takes a car from a mother and son after his car runs out of petrol is quite menacing and further re-inforces my fear of clowns.
William Forsythe shines in this and seeing his character consumed by revenge and degenrate into madness as he hunts the fugitives is one of the strengths of the film. Aside from Bill Moseley you will see other actors who have given notable performances in other Horror films like Ken Foree and Michael Berryman. Priscilla Barnes and Geoffrey Lewis both give great performances and we even have a cameo by legendary porn star Ginger Lynn.

All in all a very good horror film/road movie sequel that is in every way superior to the original and much better than I expected. Rob Zombie has produced a film that Hollywood would not have the balls to do and is most definately not for everyone. Certainly not the squeemish. The version I saw is the 2 disc uncut special edition featuring re-instated footage cut from the original theatrical release. As yet House of 1000 Corpses is only available in it's edited theatrical state.
Last edited by stigodump on Sun May 21, 2006 2:25 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by psj3809 » Fri May 19, 2006 5:00 am

Good review. I love horror films but somehow had missed the Devils Rejects. Bought this a few months back and was very pleased with it, nice sick horror film !!

Didnt realise it was a sequel so then rented House of 1000 Corpses, wasnt as good as Devils Rejects but not bad though.

Pity there wont be a third film featuring these characters. Must admit the young blonde is very very nice (Rob Zombies real life girlfriend).

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Post by Opa-Opa » Fri May 19, 2006 5:11 am

Not seen those films myself.
I am a fan of horror films, When I was young my father owned a store like that in Ronnie B's Open all Hours and he sold everything in there, mostly sweets and bread, a few toys etc but when Video Recorders started to be come popular he begain renting out tapes.
I got to see all the early pre-cert horrors coming out from cheap film studios in the UK and USA... Top chessy horror classics like The Frogs and the first Hills have eyes...lol

The only ones that scared me were John carpenters THE THING and American Werewolf in London tho... and I had seen plenty of horrors before they came out....

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Re:

Post by revgiblet » Fri May 19, 2006 5:23 am

Opa-Opa wrote:
The only ones that scared me were John carpenters THE THING
Best horror film ever. No contest.
"He who lives only to benefit himself confers on the world a benefit when he dies."

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Post by Opa-Opa » Fri May 19, 2006 5:32 am

And one of only a very small number of films that have no Women in it at all...

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Re:

Post by Mad Gerald » Fri May 19, 2006 5:35 am

revgiblet wrote:
Opa-Opa wrote:
The only ones that scared me were John carpenters THE THING
Best horror film ever. No contest.
I second that.
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Post by psj3809 » Fri May 19, 2006 6:17 am

Yep the Thing is excellent.

Best horror film for me is the Shining, one of the few films which spooked me out a bit. Brilliant film.

The recent film about the babysitter (forgot the name of it), could be when a stranger calls wasnt that bad actually.

Creep i thought was alright but a poor ending. The remake of Texas Chainsaw wasnt bad, the remake of Hills have Eyes i wasnt keen on and Hostel wasnt bad (the second half, first half was pathetic)

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Post by Opa-Opa » Fri May 19, 2006 6:25 am

I liked the first half....
It was everything a chessy horror should be. Wes craverns "rules" in the Scream Trilogy is a clever piece of writing and it seems that in Hostel most of the rules of cheesy horror are followed but in a slightly different way.
As Eric Morcambe Once said “I am playing all the right notes, but not necessarily in the right order.â€
Last edited by Opa-Opa on Fri May 19, 2006 7:48 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by funkym00se » Fri May 19, 2006 7:43 am

Devils Rejects is top for me. There is so much more to it than just gory scenes. Following a man into the depths of madness and to essentialy lower himself to the level of the killers he is trying to catch is a fantastic journey. The switching of emotions for the family from revulsion and disgust to, dare i say, pity is amazing. (You did feel that didnt you, it wasnt just me?)

As said, the music adds one hell of a lot. Also there is just enough dark humour in all the right places so as to give you small breaks in the very intense action. (the chicken seller)

10/10 for me. Rob Z's third film is going to be very difficult to make.

As a side note, has anyone seen the HOSTEL? I am waiting patiently for this because the story sound awesome. I only hope the film lives up to it.
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Post by psj3809 » Fri May 19, 2006 8:38 am

I really really really wanted to like Hostel, i was nervous as his first film (Cabin Fever was it ?) i thought was terrible, had some very weird moments but was dire.

Hostel - the first half was like a soft porn flick (nothing wrong with that!) but i was expecting horror from the start. I dont think there was anything scarey or anything horror based at all in the opening 45 minutes. Was very very poor.

The Descent i was surprised i liked, the creatures reminded me of the monster from Creep. Again the first 45 minutes nothing much happens then gets very good.

Another great film i love is 28 Days later. The first half of this film and particularly the beginning is awesome, as soon as he reaches the country house it goes totally downhill but those scenes of an empty London like no ones around etc, superb.

Just saw 'When a stranger calls' which i thought was pretty good, not really tons of blood or anything like that but a lot of good old fashioned suspense, eg a babysitter in a huge house on her own type of thing. Wasnt bad at all.

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Post by stigodump » Fri May 19, 2006 1:06 pm

Cheers psj3809. I wasn't going to do a review but was so pleasantly surprised I felt compelled.

You actually do feel a certain sympathy for the characters. Not too much but enough. I don't want to give too much away but it shows incredible talent to lure the viewer in to sympathise despite their actions.
It's easily one of the best horror films I've seen in recent times. I honestly can't see Rob Zombie topping this. Whatever his next film is I hope he keeps Phil Parmet to do the cinematography. It'll be interesting to see what direction he goes in. He's shown he has quite a talent.

On The Thing, I'm actually a bit of a John Carpenter fan and I actually have every film he's done on DVD. The Thing is, and always has been one of my fave films.

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