Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Year: 1989
Director: Victor Salva
Writer: Victor Salva
Genre: Horror: Clowns

I came into Clownhouse expecting a pretty terrible movie. I mean, what is that name supposed to imply? The house of clowns? A house made of clowns? It just doesn't sound very scary. The movie doesn't end up ever being too frightful anyway, but that doesn't make it a fine film.

Clownhouse would never win any awards for doing something entirely new. It's basically a very simple story. There are three brothers and the youngest one is afraid of clowns. The older two goad him about this a lot and have decided to take him to the circus anyway. At the same time, a group of mental hospital patients have escaped nearby. They end up killing and dressing up as clowns and cause a lot of trouble for the three boys.

The first thing that caught my attention was the teasing, ridicule, and generally perfect capturing of brotherly behaviors. It also struck me that there were three. In many movies there is a focus on two siblings, or just one child and parents. It was a nice view on the story and it worked well.

There's not very much gore and there's basically no sexuality either. I'm very appreciative of horror movies that don't rely on either to draw in an audience. Clownhouse isn't for kids either though. Well, it could be but it would probably terrify the child for a few good nights.

1 comment:

  1. I tried to dress up as a psycho clown once for Halloween as a kid, but no one understood why I was holding a meat cleaver and just assumed it was a bad clown outfit.

    Stupid kindergarten class... they just weren't ready for my avante-garde charm.


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