Saturday, July 25, 2009
Freaks - This classic from horror master Tod Browning (Dracula) was first released in 1932, but subsequently banned in England for more than 30 years because of its controversial casting and portrayal of real people with physical deformities. In the 1960s Freaks developed a huge cult following at midnight shows. Even today, it retains its power to transfix an audience. Freaks features the "living torso" Prince Radian, Siamese twins Daisy and Violet Hilton, half-bodied Johnny Eck, "pinheads" Elvira and Jenny Lee Snow and others. The film revolved around an exquisite looking but cold-hearted high-wire artist (Olga Baclanova) who marries a wealthy circus performer (little person Harry Earles), and then schemes with her bodybuilder lover (Henry Victor) to poison her husband in order to inherit his wealth. The group of "freaks" seeks revenge and gets even with the high-wire artist.