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THE LORDS OF SALEM Post-Release

post #1 of 46
Thread Starter 

THE LORDS OF SALEM is the funniest fucking movie of 2013.

 

 

 

EDIT (FOR FREEMAN): It begins with old witches praying nonsense to Satan before they rip their clothes off and show their haggard, full-frontal bodies and pruned asses. This intercuts while a man, John Hawthorne, writes a journal entry about them and his quest to eradicate them.

 

We catch up to present day Sheri Moon who works as a radio station DJ playing bad music in between dumb conversations. She sees someone in apartment 5 but her landlord lady tells her she's mistaken. One night she receives a wooden box at work from someone called The Lords, who they assume is a band, because it contains a record. She takes it home and listens to it which makes her hallucinate and awfully sleepy.

 

The next night she interviews X-Men's Senator Robert Kelly, an expert on Salem witches. The record ends up getting played over the airwaves and sends many-a-woman into a similar trance, and before we know it the "band" gets a following. The tune bugs the Senator and he begins looking into it while we wonder where the fuck Maria Conchita Alonso has been since shoving video files up her vagina and ohmygodwhathappenedtoherface. The Senator finds the tune in a book about witches, investigates more and learns it has ties to John Hawthorne, who Moon is a distant relative of and part of a curse to birth a rubber lobster. He goes to visit Moon and Dee Wallace beats him with a frying pan because Gertie's potted-plant left with E.T.

 

Moon begins seeing things. Things like Bigfoot. And goats. And rats. And witches cutting babies from wombs who then lick them before hocking loogies at them instead. And a priest forcing her to give him head in a church while praying to God about how she's unworthy. And holy men wearing Slipknot masks while jerking off rubber dildos. And the Penguin's aborted baby, who has her use his twin tentacles as some sorta X-Wing steering wheel.

 

She goes into full-on zombie mode throughout the rest of the movie while present-day witches, who sent her the record (and one of whom is her landlord), continue to fuck with her and prepare her for the coming of Satan. She coughs up blood and relapses in order to try and cope. We, too, wish we had drugs in order to cope.

 

The radio station receives tickets to a "one night only!" appearance by The Lords, and all the women who were affected by the broadcast show up (who are ancestors of the original Salem inhabitants). The curtain goes up, the witches appear and they start praying before the old witches show up behind them. All the attendees start stripping and we're treated to a vision of Sherri birthing the Anti-Lobster. Afterwards Moon appears in a white robe with white eyes and a crown while standing atop a pile of all the dead, naked attendees.

 

We're now treated to a scene of her playing fetch with her dog. The credits play while we hear a radio report of the police uncovering an apparent suicide pact, and that Zombie's body was not among the dead.

 

A Rob Zombie Film. A Shaun H Requesting a Refund.


Edited by Shaun H - 4/18/13 at 11:50pm
post #2 of 46

DEETS!

post #3 of 46
Thread Starter 

It was so bad my friend got up and left in the middle to go have an affair instead.

 

Not kidding.

post #4 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaun H View Post

It was so bad my friend got up and left in the middle to go have an affair instead.

 

Not kidding.

 

 

As the late Gene Siskel would say, this potential conversation about your friend in the outside lobby is probably more entertaining and enlightening than the film playing in the auditorium.


Edited by Agent Z - 4/19/13 at 12:25am
post #5 of 46
Rob Zombie is to horror movies what Uwe Boll is to horror movies based on video games.
post #6 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bradito View Post

Rob Zombie is to horror movies what Uwe Boll is to horror movies based on video games.

Well not completely because I actually did like The Devil's Rejects. I don't know if Boll has ever done a movie I would like. 

 

It's a shame though I was really hoping for something. I mean this is his original and I was hoping maybe......oh well. I do wish someone would make a good witch movie though, not enough of those being made.

post #7 of 46

Just got back from a screening myself. I found the build-up interesting enough but then the third act hits and there's absolutely no reason to be invested. There's no stakes. Essentially her path is set and she just accepts it. There's no tension or conflict, just bizarre imagery. And why her boyfriend/ co-worker and Ken Foree do nothing after shit hits the fan is beyond me.

 

I really like The Devil's Rejects, which is why I'm still curious as to what Rob Zombie does. However, his interests seem to lie in putting a white trash spin on the work of other directors. If his Halloween films were white trash Carpenter, this is white trash Polanski, with a hint of white trash Black Sunday-era Bava. I anxiously await his white trash take on Douglas Sirk.

post #8 of 46

This film is indeed very bad.

 

A good first 45 minutes give way to Zombie's fondness for 80s ham and random images that should be consigned to his album covers.

 

This was a huge disappointment for me because so many at festivals last year were saying that it was a return to form and his best work..

 

Goes to show you cant trust the internet...

post #9 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Dobler View Post

Goes to show you cant trust the internet...

Oh I never have, not since I met that lady online that had a beard.

post #10 of 46

Has Rob Zombie been reading M Night Shyamalan's book "How To Ensure Each Movie You Make Is Worse Than The One Before It"?

post #11 of 46
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post #12 of 46

What an informative and helpful addition to the conversation, Dilla.

post #13 of 46

So I've given the movie more thought and the more I think about it, Sherri Moon Zombie's character has to be one of the most passive characters in film history. If you want to continue with the Polanski comparison, Mia Farrow actively tries to figure out what's going on and fight it. While she chooses the baby at the end, it's still a choice. The females in this film are given no such luxury. It's not very flattering. Zombie's character is a descendant of the guy who led the charge during the Salem Witch Trials and *gasp* witches actually did exist then.

 

So essentially said witches curse the bloodlines of all the people responsible, which in this film all happen to be female. So did they wait until the bloodline was completely female because those spineless bitches will do whatever they say? I know the defense might arise that women are the ones behind it all but the whole affair feels rather misogynistic. That's not uncommon in horror but Zombie had the chance to really explore and deconstruct that notion and he didn't. That's a missed opportunity in my mind.

post #14 of 46

I picked up the LORDS OF SALEM novel out of curiosity (the idea of a horror "movie novelization" looked like an interesting throwback) but yeah ... there wasn't much story to speak of. The dialogue was inane and everything moved at a glacial pace. There wasn't much of a set-up, which was OK because there wasn't an actual climax, either.

 

But the same could be said for movies like SUSPIRIA, too, which would have produced a terrible tie-in novel. I was hoping whatever Zombie tossed at the screen would offset the story's shortcomings. Doesn't sound like that's the case, but I'll probably give it a spin, anyway. In for a penny and all.

 

Note: I won a signed book plate from Rob Zombie for the LORDS novel.

 

post #15 of 46
I... sort of liked it?

I found some of the imagery and sound design to be incredibly effective, but it never completely works because Zombie wants us to like Heidi -- yet she has no character. Her one defining trait is that she has a dog. In fact, I can't think of anything she does in this flick other than play with her dog and have incredibly fucked up hallucinations.

Was this Rated R, by the way? Because those weird mask-wearing-priests were totally stroking erect penises in act three.
post #16 of 46
Thread Starter 

They were dildos, Shape. And Heidi had plenty of characteristics, such as her naked ass and awesome knee-high socks!

post #17 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaun H View Post

They were dildos, Shape. And Heidi had plenty of characteristics, such as her naked ass and awesome knee-high socks!

 

Don't forget about the white lady dreadlocks. She's counter-culture to the extreme. However, does the fact that she works for a shitty Morning Zoo type radio show make her a sellout? See, more characterization!

post #18 of 46

I didn't plan on seeing this anyway. When I first heard what the plot was, I thought would a movie about fear, ignorance, and superstition getting innocent people killed be a better idea for a movie.

post #19 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike J View Post

I anxiously await his white trash take on Douglas Sirk.

I would see the shit out of that.
post #20 of 46
This was surprisingly well reviewed on NPR's Film Talk yesterday. Interested in seeing it now.
post #21 of 46

AV Club gave it a B. I still don't want to see it, so that review didn't change my mind.

post #22 of 46

I think the film is fantastic.  It's incredibly refreshing to see a genuine cult movie that is memorable, unsettling and blasphemous to the nth degree.  Zombie makes pastiche films that don't adhere to any slavish narrative template.  I realize that's a cop out for not telling a story, but I don't go to Zombie films for that.  I love over the top, impressionistic pastiche films (Natural Born Killers is my #1 film of all time), so I'm engineered to love RZ's work. Meg Foster, Judy Geeson, Dee Wallace Stone and Patricia Quinn are remarkable in this film.  Don't feel like arguing the thing really as I've become used to people violently hating his work.  To each their own. 

 

I interviewed Zombie about all his films for Rope of SIlicon and have reprinted the article in its entirety on my blog if interested.

http://mattrisnes.blogspot.com/2013/04/interview-with-and-career-dissection-of.html

post #23 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shloggs View Post

I think the film is fantastic.  It's incredibly refreshing to see a genuine cult movie that is memorable, unsettling and blasphemous to the nth degree.  Zombie makes pastiche films that don't adhere to any slavish narrative template.  I realize that's a cop out for not telling a story, but I don't go to Zombie films for that.  I love over the top, impressionistic pastiche films (Natural Born Killers is my #1 film of all time), so I'm engineered to love RZ's work. Meg Foster, Judy Geeson, Dee Wallace Stone and Patricia Quinn are remarkable in this film.  Don't feel like arguing the thing really as I've become used to people violently hating his work.  To each their own. 

 

I interviewed Zombie about all his films for Rope of SIlicon and have reprinted the article in its entirety on my blog if interested.

http://mattrisnes.blogspot.com/2013/04/interview-with-and-career-dissection-of.html

 

That was a really good interview. I know in the past he's alluded to behind the scenes problems with Dimension on the "Halloween" films and how unpleasant the shoots were. Did you get a chance to go into that, or did time restraints prohibit it? 

post #24 of 46

Zombie bullshits about the first HALLOWEEN.  He had it like a king on that film -- complete creative control.  Dimension stayed out of the way.  H2 was a miserable experience, but the first one was a breeze for all involved.

post #25 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Dark Shape View Post
...but it never completely works because Zombie wants us to like Heidi -- yet she has no character. Her one defining trait is that she has a dog. In fact, I can't think of anything she does in this flick other than play with her dog and have incredibly fucked up hallucinations.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike J View Post

So I've given the movie more thought and the more I think about it, Sherri Moon Zombie's character has to be one of the most passive characters in film history

I'm curious what you guys think about Romero's original NOTLD and Barbara.

post #26 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by DARKMITE8 View Post

I'm curious what you guys think about Romero's original NOTLD and Barbara.

Yes but that movie was really good and quite honestly shifted from being centered on Barbara. I haven't seen the film yet but from what I understand it's completely centered on Sheri and it's terrible.

post #27 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Waaaaaaaalt View Post

Yes but that movie was really good and quite honestly shifted from being centered on Barbara. I haven't seen the film yet but from what I understand it's completely centered on Sheri and it's terrible.


Exactly. The shift focuses to Ben as the protagonist and for good reason. He's active and he fights and pushes forward. Zombie does none of this.

post #28 of 46
Thread Starter 

Man, she barely even walks forward for the second half of the movie.

post #29 of 46

This movie is no good. There are scenes that LITERALLY serve no purpose and don't make sense on the most rudimentary of levels. And it's not an Argento "dream logic" thing, it's pure incompetence. 

post #30 of 46

I won a signed bookplate too, it is me or was it terribly underwhelming? 

post #31 of 46

I won a signed bookplate too, is it me or is it terribly underwhelming? 

post #32 of 46

My Lords of Salem review for those that might be interested:

http://mattrisnes.blogspot.com/2013/04/the-lords-of-salem-and-oblivion.html

post #33 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shloggs View Post

My Lords of Salem review for those that might be interested:

http://mattrisnes.blogspot.com/2013/04/the-lords-of-salem-and-oblivion.html

 

Pretty great review, man. I guess I'm still holding out for Devil's Rejects 2 (House of 1000 Corpses 3? House of 3000 Corpses?). Regardless of my feelings on this, he remains a filmmaker whose work I'm always curious about.

post #34 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shloggs View Post

My Lords of Salem review for those that might be interested:

http://mattrisnes.blogspot.com/2013/04/the-lords-of-salem-and-oblivion.html

 

Really like how you brought up the use of older actors. When you had that scene with the three witches and Bruce Davison, I was thinking "When's the last time you had four actors over 60 sharing a scene in a major studio movie?" Especially without any younger ones in the scene. Even if you thought the dialogue was inane (I didn't), that was pretty unique. 

post #35 of 46

This movie plays like a 1970's Chick Tract version of witchcraft.  

 

Yeah, as someone mentioned above, the scariest thing in this movie is what Maria Conchita Alonso has done to her face.   She looks hideous!

 

More blathering horseshit from Zombie, easily my least favorite working director right now.  

post #36 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ratty View Post

More blathering horseshit from Zombie, easily my least favorite working director right now.  

 

Oh, the hyperbole. Worse than Shymalan? Worse than the idiot who did Birdemic? Worse than any Asylum directors? Really?

post #37 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike J View Post

 

Oh, the hyperbole. Worse than Shymalan? Worse than the idiot who did Birdemic? Worse than any Asylum directors? Really?

 

Oh, fine.  Worst high-profile working director then.  And, yes, way worse than Sham.  Any 10 minutes of THE SIXTH SENSE is better than all of Zombie's films.  

post #38 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike J View Post

 

I really like The Devil's Rejects, which is why I'm still curious as to what Rob Zombie does. However, his interests seem to lie in putting a white trash spin on the work of other directors. If his Halloween films were white trash Carpenter, this is white trash Polanski, with a hint of white trash Black Sunday-era Bava. I anxiously await his white trash take on Douglas Sirk.

 

I'm not saying it would even be good, and it certainly wouldn't outdo the original, but I'd love to see Zombie take a stab at one of my favorite films, A Clockwork Orange.

 

Sorry.

post #39 of 46

Thanks for the kind words Levrock and Mike J!  Zombie's films are a rarity in how they populate the screen with veteran, weathered actors.  Sadly, that likely has something to do with Lords dismal box office.  Well, that and the non-existent marketing and weak theatrical push. I'm sure the film would have been vastly more successful if it was a Rosemary's Baby remake starring a bunch of nobody, twenty-something underwear models like that excruciating Evil Dead remake.

post #40 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shloggs View Post

Thanks for the kind words Levrock and Mike J!  Zombie's films are a rarity in how they populate the screen with veteran, weathered actors.  Sadly, that likely has something to do with Lords dismal box office.  Well, that and the non-existent marketing and weak theatrical push. I'm sure the film would have been vastly more successful if it was a Rosemary's Baby remake starring a bunch of nobody, twenty-something underwear models like that excruciating Evil Dead remake.

 

Just saw it, didn't think it made a lick of sense. But I think RZ was going for a Suspiria-type thing. It's weird, but not bad.

 

And I completely agree with the statement above. Lords of Salem might be a failure, but it's not a cynical exercise in concept necromancy like the ED remake.

post #41 of 46

Currently in the process of giving this a watch.....so far a decently solid movie. Very not "RZ" like. Good shit honestly...

 

Up until the midget flesh suit scene. Something about it just took it over the line. I dunno, hope the rest doesn't let me down. 

post #42 of 46

So I finally grabbed the blu-ray from Netflix. I went in with low expectations and while I ended up not liking the film I didn't hate it. As a matter of fact I really dug the atmosphere and some of the imagery. It's a shame because somewhere in there is a movie I want to see, just not this one. 

post #43 of 46

Somewhere along the way, probably right after The Devils Rejects was so well received, I saw Zombie do an interview or something, and his elegant way of speaking about film and general intelligence formed this impression in my mind that he was going to slowly become one of the modern greats. 

 

But like Zack Synder, that positive impression I somehow built of him was slowly over shadowed by the rest of his work.  His grunge white trash aesthetic is just who he is I guess.  It was unreasonable of me to expect more from him just because lightning struck once and he can carry on a conversation.  I'm sure he's perfectly happy making the stuff he makes. 

post #44 of 46
I think the whole Halloween thing set him back and soured him. I don't know TDR will always be greatness to me and I know he has a horror masterpiece in there somewhere. I'll keep holding out hope.
post #45 of 46

This isn't a movie, it's outtakes from Rob Zombie's music videos.

 

This is a film that wants to be taken seriously, so badly, but it ends up doing just the opposite in spectacular fashion.

 

Case in point: Well into Heidi's (Sherri Moon Zombie) descent, when we are supposed to be witnessing this poor woman in despair and becoming mortally and spiritually empty, Zombie has this ridiculous cheesecake shot of Heidi waking up on a couch, with her ass hanging out because her boxers are (conveniently, but inexplicably) pulled down to her thighs. It's a scene that makes no sense other than to show off Sherri's ass.

 

Rob wants to play grown-up, but he still just can't resist the goofy juvenile shit.

post #46 of 46

Finally saw this and liked it a lot. A lot of the imagery made a huge impression, not sure what all of it meant and I'm sure some of it didn't even have a point. But, damn was it moody. Then again I really liked his Halloween 2 a lot too. 

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