Thursday, September 15, 2011

Dollar Bin Horror Review:The Devil's Rejects(2005)

By Eric Polk-
Man, going from House of 1,000 Corpses to this movie is the equivalent of pulling a high-school quarterback for Peyton Manning during the Super Bowl. I had little expectations going into this, but having been told this movie directed by Rob Zombie is much better than his first, I thought I'd give it a shot.

Seven months after the events of House of 1000 Corpses, Texas Sheriff John Quincey Wydell, and a large posse of State Troopers issue a Search and Destroy on the Firefly family for over seventy-five homicides and disappearances over the past several years. They begin a full-scale attack when the Firefly family fires on them. During the firefight, Tiny  goes missing, Rufus is killed, and Mother Fireflyis taken into custody while Otis and Baby  escape. Once out of their property, Baby pretends to be hurt in the middle of the road. When a nurse in travel stops to see what is the matter, Otis comes from behind and kills her with a knife. The two escape in her car and drive towards their specified meeting spot if all hell broke loose with the law at their home. They head to Kahiki Palms motel, a run down desert beaten place to seek refuge from the law and huge media coverage. While at the motel Baby seduces Roy, part of the Banjo and Sullivan singing group. While he is off guard due to Baby’s sexual innuendos, Otis sneaks up behind him, holds him at gun-point and demands he take them back to his room where the rest of the band is resting minus their roadie, who is at the gas station getting beef jerky.

Here they torture and murder two of the five members of Banjo and Sullivan. Baby's father, Captain Spaulding meets Baby at the motel. Otis arrives a few minutes later and sexually abuses Roy’s wife, then asks the remaining men to come with him on an errand he has to do. While they are on their errand, One of the female prisoners asks to use the motel room’s restroom and tries to escape. She is later caught by Baby, who also kills Roy’s wife with a knife to the heart in the process. Otis drives with his two prisoners to a place where he buried some guns. While walking to the location, the two prisoners put up a struggle and hit Otis in the head with a large tree branch. This knocks him down, but Otis soon regains control of the situation, shooting one of them and killing Roy while he's on the ground praying to God. Otis returns to the motel, and all three leave the motel together in the band's van. The last member of the band is accidentally killed when she runs out to the highway to seek help. She could not see too well, because she is wearing Banjo's face as a mask that Otis kept as a souvenir. The maid comes to clean the room, and opens the door of the bathroom to see the grisly murder scene, with blood smeared all over the wall in a Manson-like assault, where “The Devil’s Rejects” is written on the wall in blood.

Meanwhile, Wydell slowly begins to lose his sanity when Mother Firefly reveals that she murdered his brother. After having a dream in which his brother urges him to avenge him, Wydell stabs Mother Firefly to death. The surviving Fireflies gather at a brothel owned by Captain Spaulding's brother, Charlie Altamont where he offers them shelter from the police. After leaving the brothel to purchase some chickens, Charlie is threatened at gunpoint by Wydell to give up the Fireflies. With the help of a pair of amoral bounty hunters known as the "Unholy Two," the sheriff takes the family back to the Firefly house where he delights in torturing them with similar methods they had used on their own victims. He nails Otis' hands to his chair and staples crime scene photographs to Otis's and Baby's stomach, beats, and shocks Captain Spaulding and Otis with a cattle-prod, and taunts Baby about the death of her mother.

Anyone else notice the great casting of this movie? Horror legend Ken Foree, E.G. Daily of Rugrats fame, Priscilla Barnes from Three's Company, pro wrestler Diamond Dallas Page. Wow! The music soundtrack, too, is awesome. Some great 70's rock and blues. The movie itself is light-years better than House. It's creepy, nasty, disgusting. Trust me, this ain't no synthetic teeny-bopper PG-13 style of horror. This is real. Damn real. Damn good.

I like the fact that even the good guys are bad guys in this one. No shades of grey on either side for this one. Plus, I dug the fact Rob Zombie chose a Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid-style of ending. Loved it. Loved this movie!


Gnat said...

By far the best of the Rob directed flicks in my humble opinion. The ending was actually sad... the blazing guns slow motion and freebird... actually made me shed a tear which was responded to by my boyfriend at the time telling me i was sick for shedding a tear for those immoral bastards but what can i say in the end they were a family and in some twisted way there was love there ... for each other... who cares about everyone else right? so i totally agree with the summation that the film is genius from the cinematography, soundtrack and casting (you forgot to mention danny trejo is in it too which is legen wait for it dary) I especially enjoyed the cliff notes version of the movie you came up with... in house all you can say is chris hardwick, fish boy, sexy girl bad stuff creepy stuff, dr satan rabbits...

Eric Polk said...

Oh that's right. Trejo was in it. My bad.