Mr. William Nightshade Reviews Waxwork (1988)

Salutations my screechers, screamers, and scary dreamers,

Tonight’s tale of terror entitled “Waxwork” features four friends meeting at midnight to tour a grisly gallery of waxworks. Disappearances, decapitations, desecrated tombs, torture, temptation, and apocalyptic ambitions complicate our curious co-eds evening excursion.

For a film comprised of ridiculous punch lines what really stands out are the creature designs which is relevant given how many baddies they include and alone makes this one that should be viewed. The sheer variety of monsters is extremely broad from werewolves to mummies to the Marquis de Sade so everyone will find something to fear while the humor keeps them grinning ear to ear. Given the cheap look of some of the sets, it is obvious the budget went to the creature effects but given the amount of monsters they involve it was a sin which I found easy to absolve.

The light tone does not offer up much of a scare and the story itself is a fairly straightforward affair but there are still a few nice surprises in store and a ripping finale that leaves one wanting more.  Through it all this movie retains a manic air and piles on the ridiculous without a single care which actually works to its favor as it gives us a romp that is easy to savor.  One drawback is that the characters feel pretty stock with some stilted dialogue that is easy to mock but most of the actors rise to the task which for a horror comedy is all one can really ask.

I feel before I put this review to bed my faithful readers deserve a comment on this picture’s bloodshed.  The gore presented is campy and exaggerated but there is enough so that my bloodthirsty fans will feel sated.  I feel I must comment upon the sequel as well so please bear with me for a brief spell as those watching both of them back to back will notice that they have a particular knack for making sure that those who end up dead do so by some kind of trauma to the head.

Story/Concept: 1
Direction/Style: 2
Scares: 0
Atmosphere: 1
Rewatchability: 2
Nightshade’s Notions (extra credit): 1
TOTAL: 7/10 

In brief, this film is chock full of classic creatures from many of the famous horror features so it quickly earned my affection just from the varied monster selection.

Stick to the shadows my fine friends.

Sincerely,
Mr. William Nightshade