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Tod Browning, who directed Bela Lugosi in the original Dracula, stepped into even eerier territory with this 1932 story of betrayal and retribution in the circus. Evil trapeze artist Olga Baclanova seduces and marries a midget in the circus sideshow, hoping to inherit his wealth. But in doing so, she has crossed the wrong folks: the tightly knit group of nature's aberrations, who stick together like family--and who set out to avenge their little pal. Browning brought in some of the most famous sideshow attractions of the era, include Siamese twins Daisy and Violet Hilton and Johnny Eck the Legless Boy, as well as Zip and Pip, microcephalics whose appearance in this film inspired cartoonist Bill Griffith to create his comic strip, "Zippy the Pinhead." So disturbing that it was banned for 30 years in Great Britain. --Marshall Fine --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
What makes this movie interesting isn't the plot, it's the actors, or I should say the people acting out the story. Because most of them aren't really acting. The leading villainess is probably an actor, I don't know. And there are probably a few other real actors here. But most of the "actors" are real freaks: the pinheads, the midgets, the siamese twins, the human torso. The pinheads don't need to act out their confusion and inarticulation; it's real. The midgets don't have to act out their social isolation. The siamese twins don't have to act out their physical and mental fusion. And the human torso doesn't have to practice lighting a cigarette with no arms and no legs to make it look real.
Because these "actors" are real freaks. And, more importantly, they are real human beings. Which is why the title "Freaks" is so ironic; this is a movie about human beings who also happen to be freaks.
Seventy years ago, people ran away screaming because they didn't want to believe it was real, and this movie was banned for a long time. Today, I'd like to think that people watching this movie have more understanding about the real message in this movie, that a human freak is not just a freak, but a human being also.
This is not a horror movie. And it's not an exploitation movie. It's in a category all by itself. It will fascinate you and repell you, and hopefully make you think.
Most recent customer reviews
Still a good movie. The inclusion of real "freaks" was an awesome move.Published 6 months ago by Rotty
Fast delivery and as described. This classic movie is very touching.Published 19 months ago by Pier
Freaks,released in February 1932,was and is a title that says as much about itself as it does about its' subject matter.It was a curiosity then and remains so to this day. Read morePublished on Aug. 20 2009 by Robert Badgley
Creepy. Disturbing. Difficult to sit through. Compelling. Thought provoking. Touching. Maybe even a little bit brilliant. Read morePublished on July 17 2004 by J
todd browning's films too often get compared to james whale's films and, consequently, come up short. Read morePublished on May 10 2004 by ageofanxiety
Too bad there isn't an affordable way to own the DVD of this incredible film. It still manages to shock and disturb nearly a century after its release and has timeless lessons... Read morePublished on Jan. 12 2004 by Nelson Aspen