The Devil's Rejects,2005,USA
Director: Rob Zombie
Stars: Sid Haig,Bill Mosely & Sheri Moon
Film #35 of The December Project
This morning I watched Rob Zombie's debut feature 'House of 1000 Corpses', I referred to Zombie's direction of that film as 'ambitiously ignorant' and called the film heavily flawed with no redeeming values. Having already gone so far in watching that film, I decided to finish of the 'series' and see 'The Devil's Rejects'.
The murderous Firefly are still at large, killing more innocent victims than ever, but a vengeful police sheriff is determined to bring them down.
First off, this is an obviously better film than 'House of 1000 Corpses', Zombie seems to have grown up as a director and become more aware of how the medium works. With that being said, this is still not a good film, its still heavily flawed, over stylized and filled with ridiculous content, but it is enjoyable.
Zombie's sleaziness is still omnipresent in this film, every single frame feels downright dirty, an aim of his I'm sure. The shot types and framing are still very hyperactive, there are far too many freeze frames throughout the film which really got on my nerves after a while. The set design and visual effects are grungy and for the most part effective.
Zombie stills conveys his love of classic throughout the film, with many more references to 'The Texas Chainsaw Massacre' (he should have directed the remake damnit!), he also alludes to the Marx brothers strangely, although that was relevant in the first film too. Zombie does rely as heavily on allusions this time, which was a nice change (although some are definitely there).
What I absolutely loathed about this film though, was Zombie's constant attempts to get the audience to side with the Firefly family. There is absolutely no way I could condone supporting a group of ruthless and sadistic murderers. The whole last hour feels like a ploy to show that the murderers are the true hero's and the vengeful sheriff is evil. I hated despised this aspect of the film and I despised the Firefly family. And just because you show a group of murderers in a slow motion montage that displays the bondage of their family, it does not make them fucking good!
The film features a fun cast of familiar, Sid Haig is back, although I liked him a lot less here than I did in 'House of 1000 Corpses' Bill Mosely and Sheri Moon return, Karen Black does not though. I really liked 'Dawn of the Dead' star Ken Foree in this film, Hes interaction with the chicken guy was freaking hysterical.
Like its predecessor, 'The Devil's Rejects' is a very flawed film, but it trumps the original in every way. Zombie is has obviously grown as a director and provides a more coherent film,not by much though. I hated the fact that the audience were supposed to side with the Firefly family and it almost completely destroyed the film for me. After seeing four of his films now, I can say that I'm not a fan of Rob Zombie the filmmaker.