Monday, October 3, 2016

Halloween Movie Review #3: "House of Wax" (2005)

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Movie"House of Wax"
Director: Jaume Collet-Serra
Year: 2005
Rating: R
Running Time: 1 hour, 48 minutes

A group of college kids on their way to a football game pull off the main road to camp for the night. After a confrontation with a man in a truck, the group wakes up to find the fan belt of one of their cars has been cut. While half the group continues on to the football game, the other half gets a ride to a nearby town to get a replacement fan belt. At this town, they discover Trudy's House of Wax and a psycho looking for new victims to turn into exhibits. 

Jaume Collet-Sara's "House of Wax" is a straight-forward slasher style horror film. It shares its name with a 1953 film, but not much else, though this movie does have a character named Vincent, which is a clear nod to Vincent Price, who starred in the 1953 version. It is extremely formulaic and is filled with the standard horror film tropes seen in nearly all movies like this. A group of late teen/early 20's aged people take a back road and wind up in an isolated place where they run into some not so friendly characters. A, meet B, meet C.

This film stars Elisha Cuthbert and Chad Michael Murray as Carly and Nick Jones, twin siblings who aren't exactly getting along at the moment, especially considering Nick seems to be the type of guy who is always in a bad mood. Jared Padalecki plays Carly's boyfriend Wade, whose love for his car gets them all in trouble. They are joined by their friends Blake, played by Robert Ri'chard, Dalton, played by Jon Abrahams, and Paige, played by Paris Hilton, who is the token horror movie slutty girl. None of the acting here is anything exceptional. In fact, it's downright cheesy at times, as is the movie in general. That being said, this still has the capacity to be a fun slasher movie. Collet-Sara effectively creates a creepy environment and setting because, as we all know, there is something straight up unsettling about wax figures that go "boo" in the night. "House of Wax" has the added advantage of benefiting from a strong R rating. This is the only way this particular horror film could have worked because mixed in with the cheesy dialogue and acting, there are some nice gory elements that run throughout its run time, which are just disgusting and awful fun to watch.

We aren't going to pretend tons of blood and guts fixes all the problems "House of Wax" has, and it is by no means a cinematic masterpiece. Anyone who has seen it knows that just isn't true. However, despite its formulaic story with characters making every cliché horror mistake in the book, we still found ourselves mostly entertained by this flick.

My Rating: 6/10
BigJ's Rating: 6/10
IMDB's Rating: 5.3/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 25%
Do we recommend this movie: Sure, why not?
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One year ago, we were being scared by: "The Innkeepers"

Two years ago, we were being scared by: "Halloween 3: Season of the Witch"

Three years ago, we were being scared by"John Dies at the End"

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