Rob Zombie Movies Ranked

3. The Lords of Salem (2012)

The Lords of Salem radiates alternative energy in comparison to the rest of Rob Zombie’s filmography, mainly within the aesthetical ambience that hones in on witchy entanglements and the consequential dark, coven-like setting.

The film is based around a disc jockey (played by Sheri Moon Zombie) as she uncovers a connection with the Lords of Salem. It is not necessarily the impressive performance by Moon Zombie that rivets, nor is it the unique storyline and eccentric tale that makes the film one of Rob Zombie’s most standout pieces. What does make The Lords of Salem a cardinal tale of fantasy horror is the standout attempts at creating an artful expression that steps away from the director’s normal grindhouse exploitations, instead channelling sinister visuals that energise the film’s Salem-based setting.

Further saturating the gothic vibes is the set design. As seen in the Firefly Trilogy, Zombie knows how to decorate a location, with The Lords of Salem being one of his most underrated pieces of creative work. The haunting history of the ‘witchcraft’ town is sensationalised by characteristics such as painting the paths with autumnal leaves and gloomy skies.

From the grand Guignol displays to the authentically creepy scares, The Lords of Salem delivers in every way.

2. House of 1000 Corpses (2003)

One of Rob Zombie’s most iconic pieces of cinema, and certainly his most dominant horror film from the early 2000s, is House of 1000 Corpses, the film that started the infamous Firefly Trilogy.

Being known for his horror-based creations seen in the likes of his music videos for “Living Dead Girl” (1999) and “Superbeast” (1999), Zombie was invited to design a maze for Universal Studios’ Halloween Horror Nights. The attraction sparked an idea for a movie based around a completely harrowing family akin to the Texas Chainsaw Massacre franchise’s family tree, alongside a tortuous house that embodies the psychedelic, and mesmerising frights that appear in amusement park attractions.

Since its release, House of 1000 Corpses has achieved cult status through the sheer battiness of the characters, especially with the introduction of Sid Haig’s Captain Spaulding and the haunted house atmosphere that fully positions us into an epically unnerving hell.

1. The Devil’s Rejects (2005)

The Devil’s Rejects remains Rob Zombie’s most noteworthy and critically acclaimed film to date, pleasing the masses and grossing over twice its budget at the box office.

It’s common to see Zombie’s past influencing his craft, with his work referring back to his childhood favourites such as Badlands (1973) and The Hills Have Eyes (1977). The relationship between these classic films and The Devil’s Rejects is clear, with every second of screen time being dedicated to the dusty, dark landscapes seen within 1970s cinema.

Despite the beloved mania seen in House of 1000 Corpses, its sequel steered clear of making caricatures out of its characters, opting for a much more dreary tone that enhances the atrociousness of the violence.

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Written by Grace Britten

Which Rob Zombie film do you think is his best? Does Zombie’s style scratch a particular itch for you, or do you find his work challenging? Let us know in the comments below, and be sure to follow @thefilmagazine on Facebook and Twitter for more insightful movie articles.

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