This is the only non monster film I’ll be reviewing this month, I figured with it being new and me looking forward to it I had to write something about it. Since starting this blog there’s been a handful of films I’ve been really hyped about seeing, this is one as I’m a fan of most Rob Zombie stuff, Train To Busan which I’ve yet to see as well as Death House which I cannot wait for! So for better or worse here’s my thoughts on the new Rob Zombie film.
Director: Rob Zombie
Writer: Rob Zombie
Stars: Malcolm McDowell, Richard Brake, Jeff Daniel Phillips, Sheri Moon Zombie
Run Time: 102 minutes
Budget: $1,500,000 (estimated)
Trivia – A popular rumor surrounding this movie is that Bill Moseley and Sid Haig both turned down roles for various reasons, while the truth is that neither actor was ever offered a part in the movie.
Trivia – Rob Zombie‘s first crowdfunded film.
Rob Zombie seems to divide horror fans whilst I think most enjoyed Devils Rejects and House of a 1000 Corpses there’s a lot of negatives over his Halloween remakes. For me I enjoy the way his movies are filmed and in general they feature good characters, hell my Twitter avatar in the past has been me dressed as Captain Spaulding for Halloween!
31 is a game run in some abandoned building somewhere in the middle of nowhere by what we can assume are some sick and very rich bastards. They give the “players” 12 hours to survive, the catch is there’s a bunch of psycho’s roaming around looking to kill them in a brutal fashion. These all have names ending in head with Doomhead being the main villain.
The film see’s a group of people from a travelling circus type show of some kind getting kidnapped from their motor home and plonked right in the middle of the hellish 31 world. From here they battle lots of odd creatures and some how a few of them manage to survive the encounters.
This leads to the people running the game to call on the one man they can rely on to end them Doomhead who, whilst not physically intimidating, clearly has a gift for murder. It’s his monologue that opens the film and we spend some time wondering why the hell he’s not there trying to kill people.
As with all films of this kind it all comes down to the survivors versus Doomhead in the end battle but they have another friend on their side in the battle for survival, time. Can they survive long enough to not be killed?
Doomhead may look like any old face painted freak but he really is a step above
- The way it’s filmed is great, Rob Zombie once again uses the old flickering homemade camera footage which as usual adds to the film.
- People criticise Rob Zombie and other directors for using their wives in films but Sheri Moon Zombie is great in this one as she usually is.
- There’s some good kill scenes.
- Malcolm McDowell’s voice.
- All the characters are well done even if some are quite unlikable.
- It’s well paced which Zombie must take credit for.
One of the many “heads” that don’t quite hit the mark
- Apart from Doomhead all the other killers and lunatics are pretty dull, despite featuring a Spanish speaking Nazi midget they all just feel like Zombie has tried too hard to make them strange.
- The overall story is a bit generic, rich people taking people no one will miss and making them fight for their lives, it’s all been done several times before.
- Whilst the characters are all well done in their own way we could have used another one to cheer for along with Sheri Moon’s Charly.
- The ending, I just wasn’t a fan I can’t say too much as I won’t post spoilers but it just felt really flat.
- Doomhead is an immensely great villain, he look horrible and acts even more horrible. Richard Brake deserves all the praise he can possibly get for playing the role so perfectly.
I did enjoy this film but it has a lot of flaws, overall I found it a disappointment but then again I suppose there’s always a chance of that when you wait so long for a film. There was a real chance for Rob Zombie to take this type of film and make it his own but for me he failed to do so. It does have it’s good points and is worth watching just for Doomhead if he wasn’t so awesome I’d be giving it half the rating I have.
Overall Rating – 7/10
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