The Lords of Salem 2012 ***

Writer/director Rob Zombie is often cited as everything that’s wrong with the modern horror film; his reboot of the Halloween franchise are a messy distortion of John Carpenter’s original. Frustratingly, when Zombie tries something more artful, it doesn’t make the same impact; a shame, because The Lords of Salem is an accomplished little genre flick. Salem DJ Heidi Hawthorne (Sheri Moon Zombie) receives a record in the post from The Lords, and playing it gives her a flashback to a murky past event. The record proves popular on her show, but she begins to suspect that its power may be a supernatural one. Zombie claimed this film would be as if ‘The Shining was directed by Ken Russell’, and he makes good on such auspicious reference points, with a host of horror genre cameos (Judy Geeson, Meg Foster, Dee Wallace, Patricia Quinn, Sid Haig, Michael Berryman) and a careful restraint employed before a splendid, over-the-top finale that Russell himself might have enjoyed.


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