Waxwork is a cult classic horror movie from the mind of director Anthony Hickox stars Zach Gilligan, Deborah Foreman and Jennifer Bassey, and also, rather gloriously features a turn from the ever watchable David Warner.
Waxwork’s plot is based on an inventive premise. A travelling waxwork show comes to town and the mysterious owner invites a group of teenagers (it’s always a group of teenagers, isn’t it) to a specialmidnightviewing. Being idiots, they go for it and suddenly find themselves sucked into a terrifying world where the exhibits come to live and draw the youths into the tableaux being portrayed. There’s no way that it’s going to end well for the teenagers. Especially as many of the exhibits depict famousHollywood monsters.
Waxwork is a brilliant movie that well deserves its cult status. It has an excellent pedigree with Hickox being known for later making one of the Hellraiser movies Zach Gilligan is best known from starring in Gremlins and he plays a largely similar part here, to very good effect. The movie is a twisted horror comedy which perfectly balances light and shade, offering some genuine laugh out loud moments but with enough bloody and guts spattered across the screen to keep any gore fan happy. While the leading cast are all good and perform their parts admirably, the performances which really stand out are the numerous cameos from such great names as John Rhys Davies, Patrick MacNee (Famous as John Steed from “The Avengers”) and cult favourite Miles O’Keefe. However the actor who simply walks off with the whole movie is of course David Warner who enjoys every second of screen time he gets and turns in a deliciously chilling performance as the owner of the museum, a man who knows far more than he is letting on.
The movie is a wonderful homage to all of the classic horror movies that preceded it and taps into the horror anthology genre, being a series of connected stories. The direction is beautiful and strange, superbly lit for maximum effect. The storyline is utterly ridiculous and knows it, this is a very confident movie that does exactly what it says on the tin, entertains and delights. Definitely one to watch.
Director & Writer: Anthony Hickox
Stars: Zach Galligan, Deborah Foreman and Jennifer Bassey
Release Date: 17 June 1988 (USA)