(Review originally written at 17 September 2005)

Even though the movie is directed by horror-master Tod Browning, this movie isn't really an horror movie in terms of having scares. It's more a dramatic and sympathetic movie than it is an horror movie. Still the movie remains kind of freaky to watch, since the movie uses real 'freaks' that all have highly unusual abnormalities. It makes you at times feel uncomfortable but it also makes you sympathetic towards those special people at the same time. It's obvious that director Browning made this movie with all the best intentions in the world.

To be honest I didn't liked the movie in the first few minutes. There wasn't really a story that was heading anywhere and the movie just seemed to consist out of one 'freak' introduction after the other. However as the movie progressed, the story and its heart become more and more obvious and the movie was perfectly build up towards the unforgettable and quite tense ending. The story itself is quite simple but still is filled with lots of heart and sympathy, therefor the movie becomes interesting and in a way also at the same time important to watch.

It's a bit of a shame that the 'freaks' are obviously no professional actors. Especially Harry and Daisy Earles (In real life brother and sister, in this movie husband and wife.). Still all of the characters are strong and compelling, which is I think, mainly due to Browning's professional directing.

This movie is already worth watching due to the interesting unusual characters but also due to the story that has a lot of heart in it and is also thought provoking. Some people might find this movie too 'disturbing' to watch but everybody should give this movie a chance because it's worth to be seen and deserves to be better known all over the world.


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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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