Lords Of Salem

Rob Zombie’s latest is called The Lords Of Salem, a supernatural horror flick which was written, produced and directed by him. The movie stars his wife Sherri Moon Zombie, Bruce Davison,  Judy Geeson, Patricia Quinn, Dee Wallace, Jeff Daniel Phillips, and Meg Foster. Set in the city of Salem, Massachusettes which was famous for the witch trials all those years ago, the movie was released to festivals in late 2012 and made the theatres in 2013.

Heidi is a recovering drug addict and DJ at a popular rock station for a show that airs in the evening. After her shift ends at the station one night and she is leaving with her co-hosts Whitey & Herman, the receptionist hands over a wooden box that came in Heidi’s name that contains a music album by an unknown band that calls themselves the Lords. Herman adds their town name and calls them Lords of Salem. At her home, she and Whitey listen to the record which is of a woman’s voice reciting a mysterious chant. Heidi has a vision of witches birthing a baby then damning it. The vision stops once Whitey turns the album off. However a nude witch seems to be hanging around Heidi’s apartment. The next day Heidi and her friends interview Francis Matthias, an author who has written a book on the Salem witch trials. The station then plays the Lords of Salem record, which causes all of the women in Salem (other than Heidi), who are listening to the radio show, to enter a trance. Matthias goes home and plays the song again, as his wife had recorded the show due to his interview, and tells her that he is disturbed by the name Lords of Salem.

Meanwhile Heidi is drinking wine with her landlord Lacy and her two sister Sonny & Megan. Sonny, a palm reader, tells Heidi that she is destined to given in to her darkest sexual desires, which prompts Heidi to say goodnight. At night her dog Troy barks at something in the hall and Heidi is drawn to the vacant #5, where she goes into a trance and experiences visions of a demon and a nude witch that demands that she lead the coven again. Heidi wakes up in bed and assumes the events in Apartment 5 were a vivid nightmare. A troubled Heidi goes to a church where she is sexually assaulted by the priest but when she comes to she feels that it could be a hallucination. Heidi flees the church but is faced with a ghostly entity who tells her that he has been waiting for her. Matthias does some research on the Lords of Salem and discovers the notes of their music in a book he is reading. He goes to see the author who tells him that in the seventeenth century the Reverend Hawthorne accused a coven of witches of creating the music to control the women of Salem. As a result Hawthorne killed the witches, but not before one of them, Margaret Morgan — the witch Heidi encountered outside Apartment 5 — cursed both the Salem women and Hawthorne’s descendants, calling his bloodline “the vessel by which the devil’s child would inherit the earth.” Further research demonstrates that Heidi is a descendant of Reverend Hawthorne.

Next at the station the show is giving away free tickets for the debut concert by the Lords of Salem and the song being played causes Heidi to have more visions that disturb her. Upset, she spends the night at Whitey’s home, but experiences more disturbing visions before waking up in her own apartment. She then starts buying drugs to consume again and while stones is visited by Sonny, Megan & Lacy who bring her tea and food. While Heidi is in a trance they take her to apartment 5, which suddenly looks like a concert / opera ball – with the same demon from before at the top of the stairs. She approaches the demon and (what seems to me like he impregnates her somehow) he screams. She is taken back to her apartment were she goes back to sleeping for hours at a stretch. The next day Matthias comes looking for her to tell her about what he has learned about the Lords of Salem and her linage but after an ‘interrogation’ by Lacy, Sonny & Megan he is killed by them. Herman & Whitey later come to take her to the concert but as she goes in through a door without them, they are looked out and Heidi is in the concert room with several women – the ones who had heard the song through the radio. Lacy, Sonny, Megan join the ghosts of Margaret and her coven in a satanic ritual and the music makes all the women remove their clothing. In the middle of this Heidi gives birth to a strange creature (supposed to be Satan’s spawn) atop the corpses of the naked audience members. The next day the station announces the mass suicide by 32 women at the concert and Heidi’s disappearance.

Strange, brooding but not scary at all. I was hoping for more although some parts of it were done well. 7 outta 10!