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Lords Of Salem, The (2013)
Movie Review by The Mortician

Lords Of Salem, The (2013) Rock icon turned horror moviemaker Rob Zombie is at it again with a satanic, psychedelic movie about vengeful witches that were burned at the stake in 1600's Salem, Massachusetts. The head of the coven of witches puts a curse on her accuser, one Nathaniel Hawthorne, and all his ancestors. Enter Sherri Moon Zombie, Rob's beautiful wife, starring as Heidi in modern times, who just happens to be a member of the cursed Hawthorne family tree. Heidi is part of a trio of shock rock 'n roll DJ's (which includes Ken Foree from DAWN OF THE DEAD '78 fame) at a Salem radio station and also, she's a recovering meth addict. A strange vinyl record by an 'upcoming band' called The Lords is delivered to the station and when their music is played over the airwaves, it causes many women in Salem to go into strange trances and have hallucinations, flashbacks, and nightmares about the Salem Witch murders. Heidi's transformation is the main focus, of course, and we watch her slowly succumb into a sticky pit of phantasmagorical madness. It's here that we witness the witch trial and subsequent murders by being burned at the stake, along with a host of other blasphemous imagery, including a scene where Heidi gives oral pleasure to a priest in church! There are also numerous scenes of satanic worship, masses, and dark Sabbaths that show nude witches playing Lords-ish inspired music and prancing around naked. No complaints from me there! As Heidi questions her sanity and loses grip with all relationships at her job, she finds herself 'falling off the wagon' and getting high again, which adds another dimension to her already confused reality. But wait, there's three charming older ladies living in her eerie, historical apartment building that will be more than happy to 'help' her out...unless they turn out to be the coven of witches themselves! Once Heidi totally descends into a meth-amped, surreal world of satanic sorcery where the true goal of the vengeful witches is finally revealed, just sit back and enjoy the shocking, stylistic imagery that Rob Zombie delivers. Obviously a homage to '70's satanic flicks like THE DEVILS, THE SHINING, SUSPIRIA, and ROSEMARY'S BABY, LORDS is a chilling, slow burn of a movie that will surely divide horror fans as well as Rob Zombie die-hards. I've enjoyed everything Zombie has delivered so far in the movie world, even the much-hated HALLOWEEN 2, which I thought had great visuals and tone, and with LORDS, all of the things Zombie was experimenting with in H2 have been amped up into an original project. Golden era scream queens Dee Wallace, Patricia Quinn, Judy Geeson, and Meg Foster rule the roost with their bold, shocking, overzealous portrayals as the witches, and it's great to see them on the big screen once again. Look for more horror icon cameos if you can find them (like Sid Haig and Michael Berryman), as you know Zombie loves to pepper his work with cult icons from the exploitation world. And I can't forget Sherri Moon Zombie, who not only puts in a decent performance as Hedi, but also treats the audience to numerous nekkid sequences. Seems her character loves to walk around bottomless, so this adds a nice treat to the slow burn proceedings as things work up to a shocking finale that involves midget demons, baby sacrifices, satanic births, and even animation as things get trippy beyond belief. Probably for certain acquired tastes only, LORDS OF SALEM delivers the goods and is a devilish good time for fans of this style of filmmaking. See it and decide for yourself.

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