Another October. Another 31 movies. I actually did it last year. But if you were to read this page (yeah, I know – i’m the only one), you wouldn’t know it. I got lazy and began simply posting brief snippets on the FaceSpace. But I did it, damn it. And I aim to plan on maybe doing it again.
Freaks (1932) – Dir. Tod Browning. Starring Harry Earles, Olga Baclanova, Leila Hyams, and Henry Victor.
Honestly, I don’t know exactly where to begin describing this movie. With a title like Freaks, what exactly would one expect to see? The movie stars actual circus performers, many of whom are deformed or otherwise more than a bit different. When the movie was first released in 1932, people were horrified. People looked at it as a film exploiting the so called “freaks” that filled the cast. The film was banned in the United Kingdom because the films “deformed cast was shocking to film goers at the time”.
It wouldn’t be until years later that people actually took another look and saw the movie for what it was, a movie that actually celebrated the performers deformities.
Freaks focuses on a travelling circus inhabited by many “Freakshow” standards, as well as a few “normies” and shows how the real monsters are not who you’d expect. Though, it’s fairly obvious that the evil ones are going to be the normies. Cleopatra, played by Olga Baclanova, is hate-able from the moment she appears on the screen. The character has zero redeeming qualities, and her comeuppance can’t come soon enough.
Freaks is a short movie, clocking in at 64 minutes (in the edited cut which I watched, because : reasons) and 90 minutes in the un-edited version. The film was drastically cut down to take out more of the “shocking” parts, and because of uptight twits, those scenes are now considered lost. This is especially sad because Browning is a great director. I mean, for shit’s sake, he directed Lugosi in Dracula and worked with Lon Chaney. While not the creepiest movie, it has a certain feeling to it that really ramps up in the last 15 minutes. Worth a watch.
Scare Factor: 1/5
“Can A Full Grown Woman Truly Love A Midget ?”: Nope