When a group of six friends visit a waxwork museum for a private viewing at midnight, little do they know that the displays are holding their own little secrets. Each exhibit holds an infamous supposed real life killer in them in wax. Cross the red velvet rope at your peril to take a closer look, however, as the moment you do, you are likely to become part of the show.
The waxworks are run by Lincoln (Warner) who, having stolen trinkets from eighteen of the most evil people who ever lived from Mark’s (Galligan) grandfather, is in a hurry to complete his collection so that they can all come to life and take over the world. It’s up to Mark, Sarah (Foreman) and wheelchair bound Sir Wilfred (Macnee) to try and stop them before it happens.
Now nearly thirty years old, Waxwork was Hickox’s first movie and is still a fun spectacle three decades on. It was supposedly the goriest film ever filmed at the time and had quite a few issues with the MPAA with multiple cuts being made before it passed certification.
The scenes where characters meet their demises in the exhibits are individually great, ranging from Egyptian tombs and vampire lairs to a homage to Night of the Living Dead and even the Marquis de Sade’s torture chamber.
The environments are richly detailed and although some of the acting is eye-rollingly awful and the plotline is suitably silly, this is ‘80s horror at its best. You could probably tick the boxes of all the tropes that are here, but considering so many sub-genres are crammed in, it’s amazing that just about every part looks great. Even though it was written in only three days, the fact that they managed to secure some decent sized names in Galligan, Warner, Macnee and even John Rhys-Davies should tell you how much people believed in the project.
A couple of documentaries are included that give you a few extra bits of trivia to get your teeth into.
This is still a great way to spend an evening and the Blu-Ray transfer is very good. This is most fun you’ll ever have with a bunch of wax (honest).
WAXWORK (1988) / CERT: 18 / DIRECTOR: ANTHONY HICKOX / SCREENPLAY: ANTHONY HICKOX / STARRING: ZACH GALLIGAN, DEBORAH FOREMAN, DAVID WARNER, PATRICK MACNEE / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW