Box art for House of Wax (2005)

House of Wax (2005)

horror


House of Wax tells the story of a group of friends who fall prey to a sinister plot while passing through a small town on their way to a college football game.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
    25%
  • Audience Score
    42%

common sense

NOT FOR KIDS 0
Consumerism
3 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
3 out of 5
Language
3 out of 5
Positive messages
0 out of 5
Sex
3 out of 5
Violence
5 out of 5

Bloody slasher film is nothing like the original.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that this movie contains repeated gross-out horror images, including skin ripping off faces; bodies subjected to stabbing, chopping, and piercing; girls screaming and weeping; shotguns blasting; deer carcasses rotting; bugs crawling; even a finger being cut off with wire cutters. The killers keep fetuses in jars, blame their mother, and target boys and girls equally, though Paris Hilton is the only victim to strip to her red bra and panties and give her boyfriend (off-screen, but plainly indicated) oral sex. The killer superglues one girl's mouth shut, and she cuts it open so it bleeds and she can summon help; characters drink, smoke, and use harsh language.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about the characters' extreme dimwittedness; and how, even for generic plotting, their willingness to explore sinister places and walk headlong into obvious trouble is remarkable. Initially at odds, Carly and her twin brother Nick learn to get along as their friends are killed off; families might discuss their display of sibling bonding, except that they are paralleled by the killer twins, once conjoined, now just thoughtlessly murderous. Families can also talk about the stereotypical representation of the villains as underclass and vaguely rural.

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

Top Critic Reviews

Rotten: Yet for a so-called exploitation film, Wax is slow to exploit. Its leisurely setup is a fright-challenged snooze, and at nearly two hours it's bloated for a slasher flick.

- Bruce Westbrook, Houston Chronicle, Friday, May 6, 2005

Fresh: It's nowhere near as punishing as Rob Zombie's House of 1,000 Corpses, but it's increasingly tense and resourceful and, in the end, it gets the sick job done.

- David Edelstein, Slate, Friday, May 6, 2005

Rotten: You'll be rooting for these people to get slaughtered out of sheer boredom.

- Desson Thomson, Washington Post, Friday, May 6, 2005

Audience Reviews

0 star

I was kind of looking forward to this remake. Obviously the main reason was because Paris Hilton was going to get killed on screen. Everyone was talking about it; unfortunately this remake of the Vincent Price classic is a terrible film. The film is plagued by a terrible cast; I mean they got Paris Hilton in the film. Right off the bat, it should give you a hint that this film wouldn't be great, right? Her other cast mates are very bad as well, Elisha Cuthburt though very attractive, can't act. Brian Van Holt here as the villain is fairly good, but unfortunately, his acting doesn't redeem this piece of garbage. House of Wax suffers from the usual remake formula, a star studded teen cast, that teenagers can relate to with cheap scares and gore. Don't get me wrong, I love gore and cheap scares. But when there well done, not when they're done in a way that demands it, like if it's the only trick the filmmaker can generate out of his film, then it doesn't work. House of Wax lacks anything that can make a good horror film appealing to its audience, and when it's finally over, you're left irritated by how stupid this film truly was. A very disappointing film and one that could have been good. Instead, House of Wax is nearly 2 hours of wasted potential on screen, something that could have been great, but is ultimately sunk by its terrible cast. Luckily Director Jaume Collet-Serra made a much better film in Orphan, which incorporated old school horror elements with thrills. However he clearly missed the mark with this film. Not even Paris' on screen death makes up for the film.

- TheDudeLebowski65, Saturday, June 2, 2012

2 stars

The best part of this film was probably Paris Hilton, and that's not even saying alot.

- fb729949618, Sunday, October 2, 2011

5 stars

Really great horror film. Chad Michael Murray was amazing. Scared me quite a lot - extremely spooky!

- murphmann93, Thursday, June 23, 2011