So every Halloween, I (like pretty much everyone) try to do a 31 horror films of October and usually? I suck at it. I either re-watch things I’ve seen or get caught up in work, Halloween Horror Night-ing, and whatnot. But this year? I’m doing this shit. And with films I’ve never seen (as tough as I thought that would be, it’s actually leaving me with a pretty interesting selection). The film of October 1st is The Devil’s Carnival.
Although I’ve heard of this movie before from my many Repo! the Genetic Opera fanatic friends, I just never found the time to watch it. And now I really regret it took me this long. The Devil’s Carnival is one of the most visually stimulating films I’ve seen in a long time. The bright colors, carnival-esque hues, lights, sets, scenes and sounds all swirl together in a kaleidoscope of pure delicious and dark visual. And on top of that? The rather catchy musical soundtrack and fantastic delivery by the actors (extra kudos to Satan himself) fully complemented the visuals to result in a fantastic, albeit slightly short and jumpy horror film.
The Devil’s Carnival starts with the stories of the thee latest visitors to the Devil’s Carnival – each of them struggling to deal with their own sins and demons.
John (Sean Patrick Flanery) is seen distraught in a bathroom, covered in blood and sobbing over a picture a child. Tamara is seen locking herself into a car to avoid what appears to be an abusive boyfriend. Ms. Merrywood is being busted for a breaking and entering. And suddenly (or maybe not so suddenly) they each find themselves waking up at a carnival, in new outfits and new surroundings. There are rules at this carnival. 666 to be exact, and the punishment for not obeying them? Torture. But it isn’t really the torture these three need to be worried about, it’s repeating the same mistakes they made in life and facing spending eternity stuck at the Devil’s Carnival.
The Devil’s Carnival is packed fulled of freak and fabulous characters – like The Painted Doll (Emilie Autumn) who looks like half her face is falling off, The Ticket-Keeper, midgets dressed as clowns, and many many more. Each of them pine for a chance to assist in the new visitors’ demise – but it turns out this time Satan wants to handle it himself. So he utilizes Aesop’s Fables to tell the tales of these poor souls and how they consistently choose to sin which has led them to him – and will keep them with him . . . forever.
*SPOILER ALERT* Except for John. By the end of the movie, he manages to overcome his biggest downfall – grief. Satan releases him to Heaven. Yes, Satan releases him. But not due to the kindness of his heart – but it appears a war between Heaven and Hell is coming. We’ll have to wait to see what happens in The Devil’s Carnival 2 which is (hopefully) slated to be released later this year.
Until then? Be sure to check out part one – and give it a little credit. It’s pretty impressive for its budget and I can only imagine how much better the sequel will be. I found a clip starring one of my favorite rappers Tech N9ne as Heaven’s Librarian. YES! It looks like Heaven could be even more fucked up than Hell. This is one battle I can’t wait to see unfold.
The Devil’s Carnival 2 Teaser