Paris Gets Waxed
To its credit "House of Wax" knows that it is just another typical horror movie with teenage friends battling a slasher and so one by one they get picked off in a suitably grizzly manner. As such it doesn't try to do anything flashy or deep it just works the expected horror thrills in a solid if a little crazy manner. But beyond knowing what it is there is nothing great about "House of Wax" unless you have a fondness for one of its young good looking cast.
6 friends on the way to a football game find themselves having to take a detour when the short cut they are taking is closed and so set up camp for the night in the middle of nowhere. But come the next morning Wade (Jared Padalecki) finds his fan belt cut and so along with his girlfriend Carly (Elisha Cuthbert - The Girl Next Door) head to the near by town to try and find a replacement where they stumble across the House of Wax. But whilst there they get a sense that something is not quite right so they along with their friends must battle to survive the horror they find themselves in.
So it has to be said that "House of Wax" is neither a remake or a sequel to the 1953 movie of the same name but does use the idea of real people and wax dummies. But it also has to be said that it is an ordinary horror movie which features a group of young people who find themselves being picked off one by one in an in your face grizzly manner. So despite the reasonable idea of people being turned into wax figures it ends up an ordinary even stock horror movie with attractive young things in peril.
Now there is something satisfying about this as it is nicely made delivering the expected horror with a very in your face manner. Basically if all you want is to watch pretty young things being picked off one by one in some gory fashion it will suffice. But it offers up nothing new or any real ingenuity when it comes to the horror or the camera work let alone what happens although it does get a little crazy towards the end.
What that ends up meaning is beyond watching young people die the attraction is the young cast and we have a lot of attractive young people be it Chad Michael Murray and Elisha Cuthbert as twins or the piercing eyes of Robert Ri'chard as Blake. But in the end the most entertaining performance comes from Paris Hilton as whilst she is not a good actress the fun which is had with her character is where the movie is at its most amusing.
What this all boils down to is that "House of Wax" is an effective modern horror which knows what it is and delivers on that expectation. It isn't by any stretch of the imagination a great modern horror movie but it serves its purpose.