My history with the Devil's Rejects has always been a sad one. On one fine October month both House of 1000 Corpses and The Devil's Rejects was on free movies on demand. I had watched the first and found myself enjoying it more than the common fan but when it came time to watch The Devil's Reject I only got about as far as the motel room scene before I had to turn it off. Settle down, it wasn't because it was too intense for me but you know the college years- papers, annoying people coming over your house to drink- things happen and sometimes you have to pause an on demand free movie. As luck would have it however, The Devil's Rejects was gone by the next time I tried to watch it! Those A-holes. I checked every single month after that and still nothing. And it wasn't until now when I have a steady job and a Netflix membership that I could finally enjoy the peace and solitude and all around closure that is- The Devil's Rejects.
People are obsessed with how much better this movie is than House of 1000 Corpses. For me I find the overall environment and creepiness to be much higher in House of 1000, but the cinematic value higher in Devils. This movie really focuses on what makes that Firefly family tick and shows how I guess maybe they are real people underneath all that bad teeth and necrophilia. The family dynamic is still alive and well- there are brother and sister squabbles, father and son disagreements and resentments, and of course the ever popular badly burned and disfigured brother with a contradictory name.
For me what surprised me the most however was the harsh turn that things take towards the end. The Firefly's don't make the best victims. in fact I was entirely disappointed with the way they handled being on the other side of things. A few staples in the tummy and you go ahead and cry like a sissy Otis? I wanted them to laugh and enjoy the pain- kind of like how Morticia orgasms when she is being tortured in the Addams Family. Mother Firefly came somewhat close- but those 3 in the chair at the end...man grow some fucking balls already. I'm not sure if we were meant to feel bad for them but I just really got annoyed by the end.
The redeeming factor is of course the last scene- which the perfect action I would have expected them to take. Going out with guns blazing. Having them be the victim is too lame and doesn't offer up anything different from the ordinary- "oooh I'm a bad guy and am going to hurt you" scenario.
I found the best scenes to be in the beginning and middle. The dialogue and comedy that comes out of it is great and I just LOVE that ice cream scene. I also enjoyed when Spaulding takes the Mom's car and asks the little boy if he likes clowns. And then I thought the violence in the beginning was also well done and pretty affecting. The whole motel scene is anxiety provoking but is much too short in my opinion. It seems like things get really intense and then Otis takes the men away for his field trip.
The truck hitting the girl scene is great as well- and all the guts splayed on the road. Then of course the beginning scene perfectly sets up just the kind of family those Firefly's are. Their ancient forms of bullet proofing always crack me up and I love seeing Otis sleep with a dead body- it just really makes me feel all nice and creeped out inside.
Overall I guess i just don't understand all the hype. Yes the movie is wildly entertaining but I was also entertained by House of 1000 Corpses. The lines in this movie are spectacular and it really does show the journey and fall of the family and what they stand for. That I suppose is the draw and while I can appreciate it I just still can't get over the fact that they whined like little babies about a few staples in the gut. Suck it up Firefly's.
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I was fine with this movie... up until the Freebird moment. Once that started I was like, "Really? You had to do that?"
Hahaha yeeeeah It was a little too obvious for comfort.
the only way to ruin it even more is if they played "Stairway to Heaven" at that moment.
Great review! I'm hoping to watch House of.../Rejects soon, as I only caught half of House on TV, and with my new found love for Bill Moseley, I clearly need to sit down and watch these properly!
After reading your great review of Devil's rejects, I have to agree with you that it doesn't beat House of 1000 Corpses, and for the same reasons, the ending starting with the hotel scene starts to run flat. I was hoping that Rob Zombie would break new ground but as he is depending more on Big Hollywood investors you won't get the creative freedom you would have as an independent. See of course his re-do of Halloween.
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