The House of Wax is a very interesting movie. There is not much explanation or logic to it (although what horror movie really has logic) but there are still a few moments that stuck out to me as fear worthy.
Vincent Price is a man obsessed with creating wax sculptures. And let me just say that wax figures have always freaked me out. This probably began when I took to a trip to the Salem Witch Museum. Wax figures are sometimes too realistic and other times too dirty or old so the creepiness manifests in many forms. I am always positive that when looking at a wax sculpture it will actually be a real person pretending to be wax and then scare the crap out of me. The wax figures in the beginning are no exception as they are extremely well done and life like. I was half expecting them to come alive but of course this isn't Waxwork. The Marie Antoinette one in particular was so real that I combed the trivia section of IMDB several times to check if maybe that was a real actress after all. So far I have found no evidence. So Vincent Price is in love with his creations or his friends as he calls them but his partner wants to burn the place down and reap the benefits of the insurance policy. Now of course that may be the worst idea imaginable to Vincent- killing his friends?! You crazy! So a fight ensues but the partner burns the place down anyways.
It was this scene that I found to be the creepiest because the way that the wax figures melt is very surreal and very creepy. it reminds me of Charlie & the Chocolate Factory or even the Raiders of the Lost Ark. A face that completely melts away, and eyeballs that pop out from the head is an unexplainable horror. But just the way the camera focused on each and every wax sculpture burning and melting and thinking of the possibility that there could be a real person in there somewhere was very unsettling.
When we next see Vincent he is very badly burned and finds his old partner and kills him then takes his money. With it he reopens his museum and makes it better. And now since he can't use his hands he has to find other ways to create the sculptures of his dreams. So what better way to do that then steal dead bodies and make them into wax figures? I can't think of any other ideas so dead bodies it is. Oh another creepy scene was in the morgue where there were just all these bodies under sheets and one just bolts upright suddenly. The mortician says not to worry the embalming sometimes causes their bodies to seize up and move? Is that for real? That's the most disturbing thing I've ever heard.
So anyways a lady's friend gets killed and she happens into the house of wax and realizes that the Joan of Arc figure looks exactly like her friend. The cops get involved they realize a lot of recent dead people look like the exhibits. And well you know fights ensue, naked ladies almost get turned into wax, and someone falls into the giant vat of hot bubbling wax. It's pretty much a given when there's wax involved someone will face a most terrible death as a result of it.
All and all I was pleasantly surprised at some of the chills in this one. The ending scene with Vincent Price's mask is classic and the one Bravo chooses to talk about. I am still a bit confused about whether or not Vincent Price had always used dead people or if he only just started to when he couldn't use his hands. It just seems a little extreme to just wake up one day and decide that that's the next option on the list. That's all I'm saying. And no I will never see the House of Wax with Paris Hilton in it.
Buy House of Wax at Horror Movie Empire