|release date||July 22 2005|
|studio||Lions Gate Films|
|starring||Bill Moseley, Sid Haig, Sheri Moon, Michael Berryman, Ken Foree, Kane Hodder, Steve Railsback, Tyler Mane, P.J. Soles, Danny Trejo, Brian Posehn, Leslie Easterbrook, Daniel Roebuck, Duane Whitaker, Rosario Dawson, Ginger Lynn, Mary Woronov, Deborah Von|
|trailer 1||Trailer #1|
Old review moved here.
Originally thought to be the sequel to House of 1000 Corpses, Rob Zombie’s The Devil’s Rejects is actually a spin-off and should not be construed as a sequel. The only thing that’s constant in Rejects as to House is the main cast of Bill Moseley, Sid Haig and Sheri Moon.
In this violent spin-off, after a string of murders and having killed Sheriff Wydell in House the Firefly family (Captain Spaulding (Sid Haig), Otis (Bill Moseley) and Baby (Sheri Moon)) are hiding out. The police surround the Firefly place and after a huge opening shoot out send the family on the run. Mother Firefly (Leslie Easterbrook) is captured while the rest of the gang heads off to Spaulding’s brothers place. Ken Foree plays Charlie Altamont, Spaulding’s brother, who runs the bordello in the town. A game of ‘cat and mouse’ becomes a game of ‘mouse and cat’ and vice versa once again.
Rob Zombie’s The Devil’s Rejects is gritty, fierce and unpredictable leaving the audience in constant suspense. For a film with an “R” rating, it’s quite brutal leaving little to the imagination- and to think that it’s been cut down! Rejects felt like a mesh of various violent flicks from Texas Chainsaw Massacre to Bonnie and Clyde to Natural Born Killers, with a late 70’s kick. The camera never shies away from the kill, the blood pours out of wounds and the acting only heightens the experience.
Not to take anything away from the other actors but Bill Moseley and William Forsythe were remarkable. Sheriff John Wydell appeared to be Otis’ direct reflection in the sense of rage, only their motivations differed. When Otis talked, I listened- and rarely laughed. He was BRUTAL. He molests women, stabs people in the craw and takes no mercy on anyone. The one time he attempts to have a little mercy the scene ends in bloodshed at its finest. Wydell started off a little as they say, meh, but once his character morphs from the victim to the hunter he became convincing and magnificent.
The screenplay aided the characters a great deal in their delivery, especially scenes with Sid Haig. One of the craziest scenes in the movie is when Captain Spaulding steals a car from a woman and her kid is sitting in the passenger seat. The kid gets scared and Spaulding asks why he’s afraid of clowns. He then says he’s going to come back and that he better have a good answer or “Ill kill your entire family!” Funny or unsettling, you decide…
I also really dug Zombies plot changes where he flip-flops the pacing. The hunter becomes the hunted and vice versa. The movie carries a theme of the weak, the helpless and the powerful. Rob does us great service in inserting scenes such as one where we see the rejects having ice cream together and having fun- he makes us care for them. By the end of the film, you don’t know who you’re supposed to be rooting for- the good guys or the bad guys!?
The score is magnificent- come on, who doesn’t want to rock to some Free Bird in the climatic battle?! You don’t like that song? Well then F-off!! Unlike House where Rob wrote original material, this time he picks out appropriate songs for the time and situations to give the movie more of its tone.
Another big difference between House and Rejects is the cinematography and the entire look of the film. House is a fun, dark-colored adventure into the lives of the Fireflys while Rejects is a well lit, rough and stylistically blunt picture. It looked very reminiscent of a Quentin Tarantino or Robert Rodriquez film with the scenery and the cameras attitude- only it had the touch of Zombie. Rob has shown us that he can better himself and has prospered as a director instead of attempting to repeat what worked in the first film like so many other directors do.
So what’s going to happen with this movie? It’s truly hard to judge because Rob made the movie what he would want to see, not specifically what we want to see. If you have the same tastes as good ol’ Rob Zombie, then you’ve got nothing to worry about. But if you’re looking for some crappy fright fest along the lines of The Grudge remake, packs your bags and run for the hills ‘cause the Rejects are going to kick your ass…