House of Wax (1953) vs. House of Wax (2005)
This is one the best films when it comes to classic horror.
André de Toth's remake of “Mystery of the Wax Museum”, is one of the first and best 3-D (stereoscopic) feature films, an alternative technology (like Cinemascope, Cinerama) used by 1950s directors attempting to compete with the new threat of television. Professor Jarrod (Vincent Price) is a devoted wax figure sculptor for his museum in 1910s New York City. When his financial partner, Sidney Wallace (Paul Cavanagh), demands more sensational exhibits to increase profits, Jarrod refuses. The vengeful Wallace torches the museum, leaving Jarrod for dead. Miraculously, Jarrod survives (though his hands and legs are rendered useless) and builds a new House of Wax with help from threatening deaf-mute sculptor, Igor (Charles Bronson). The museum's popular "Chamber of Horrors" showcases recent crimes like the murder of Wallace, a victim of a cloaked, disfigured killer along with his fiancée, Cathy (Carolyn Jones). When Cathy's friend, Sue (Phyllis Kirk), visits the museum she makes a discovery that leads to the horrifying truth behind the House of Wax.
This is another film that shows us what Vincent Price can do and he did great with this role.
I first saw this movie as a kid and after I watched it I was creeped out for a week. It was so effective in its scares that I always remember sitting down for the first time and watching it. The effect of the film has changed over the years, but it still holds that creep factor that will make anyone feel uneasy after they watched it.
So, how do you remake such a great film? Well, you cast Paris Hilton and have no respect of the original.
It makes me mad that the remake was terrible. It didn’t have the sophistication of the original and failed with its scares.
I honestly believe they only casted Paris Hilton so they could market that, knowing that the film lacked any kind of decent script and clear direction. Some will say that it had a sense of humor, but I don’t think it did. What people mistake for a sense of humor is actually the filmmakers not knowing what they were doing.
It was stupid, overly formulaic and the performances were just bad.
So, which is better?
Don’t even waste your time with the remake; the original is the way to go.