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House Of 1000 Corpses review

You've heard this one before: kids run out of gas in Hicksville, Nowhere, find themselves holed up with a household of inbred wackos, get trussed up and hacked to pieces.

What's more interesting is the story behind metal rocker Rob Zombie's directorial debut, House Of 1000 Corpses. Made for Universal after the bearded hellrat designed a horror display for their amusement parks, the studio then ditched it for being "too dark and disturbing". Zombie flogged it to MGM, who then developed a case of cold tootsies themselves. Finally, Lions Gate bought and released the movie in a sanitised 88-minute cut, slashed from a blood-soaked 105, to terrible US reviews and good box office.

Well, let's get one thing straight - - Corpses is a mishmash of other, better movies (mainly Texas Chain Saw Massacre and it's sequel, endlessly referenced), clumsily stitched together and made up in carnival colours. It's brash, it's messy, it's even incoherent - - not helped by Metro Tartan's decision to release the shorter cut - - and it'll only appeal to hardcore genre fans with a love of trash culture. Not to mention an ear for Zombie's maddeningly catchy but grinding, repetitive music.

If that's you, then this is everything you'd expect and want from a Rob Zombie flick, a junk artefact peopled by colourful sickos like the clown-faced Captain Spaulding (cult actor Sid Haig) and rotting nympho Mother Firefly (Karen Black). Those well-adjusted souls with more sensitive palates, however, had best stay clear. Mr Zombie wouldn't have it any other way.

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