The Lords of Salem
The Lords of Salem

Film Review

Film title
The Lords of Salem
Rob Zombie
Sheri Moon Zombie, Bruce Davison, Jeff Daniel Phillips, Ken Foree, Dee Wallace, Meg Foster
Release date
19 Apr

The Lords of Salem

4/5 stars
Film review by
Published 29 April 2013

Rob Zombie’s love of 70s grindhouse has been apparent throughout his often crass, brutal filmmaking career. With The Lords of Salem, however, the headbanger-cum-helmer seems keen to develop, drawing instead from more respectable wells. Polanski, Kubrick and Ken Russell loom large in this twisted and artful offering.

Zombie’s wife and go-to leading-lady Sheri Moon plays Heidi, a rock DJ in famed witchcraft hotspot Salem. When a mysterious LP signed simply by ‘The Lords’ arrives at her radio station, Heidi plays the track and is immediately entranced; weird visions and increasing mental disquiet soon follow.

Conjuring a creepy, doom-leaden atmosphere, the writer-director has a field day with his reference points. The Shining, The Devils and Rosemary’s Baby are prevalent, but there's The Exorcist and a touch of Cronenberg’s The Fly thrown in for good measure. Mrs Zombie cuts a sympathetic demonic patsy, while striking imagery and a wicked score from John 5 and Griffin Boyce haunt. Featuring some playfully deranged fantasy and flashback sequences to compliment what is overall sober, superior horror, this budding auteur of the macabre is hitting his groove.