Horror on Screen

Lords of Salem (2013)

Another guest review by our good friends over at Horror on Screen

Horror on Screen rating:

  • Eloise = 5 / 10;
  • Raoul = 7 / 10;

Release Date: 2013

Genre: Witches & Occult

Director: Rob Zombie

Screenwriter: Rob Zombie

Synopsis

Almost 400 years after a powerful coven of witches was burned in the city of Salem, Heidi, a young woman, will be one of the first witnesses of their return.

 Horror-on-Screen Review (by Raoul):

I have always been an unconditional fan of Rob Zombie’s films, but this one is honestly a tricky one to judge. Three days after seeing it, I still cannot decide whether I liked it or hated it, but one thing is for sure, this bizarre film made a very strong impression on me.

The Lords of Salem is not what you could call a “scenario movie” because the story, without being bad, remains very simple. Instead, the appeal of this film clearly comes from its extremely dark and bizarre atmosphere. Some scenes are really picturesque and colorful, for example the ones in the cinema, and the overall experience leaves you with a strong feeling of unease once finished. Sometimes, it is even a little over-exaggerated which tends to make the film looks more like an accumulation of psychedelic scenes rather than a proper horror story. Looking back at it, a lot of the really arty scenes were actually unnecessary.

The main turn off for me was then Sheri Moon Zombie. I usually like her a lot when she plays the role of demented hot girls, but here she simply did not belong, and her acting ruined some of the film’s most beautiful scenes. Probably it is about time for Rob Zombie to stop sticking her in every single of his movie. In contrast, the other characters in the film, and especially the three creepy witches, were just great.

Once again, Rob Zombie delivers a very atmospheric film that punches you in the guts. Story-wise quite weak,The Lords of Salem compensates by the torrent of emotions that it transmit to the viewer, whether it is hate, disgust, or enjoyment. Visually really impressive, this movie can, in many ways, be seen as a modern version of Argento’s masterpiece Suspiria (1977).

Most critics disliked this movie and I do not think it is a wonderful film, but I truly believe that I must stand for it. It is not an easy movie to like, but at least it is not another passion-less and brainless film. It might well be one of these pieces of art that will only be truly appreciated after Rob Zombie’s death.

TRAILER

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Original review over at Horror on Screen: Lords of Salem

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