Rob Zombie came up with the idea of 31, his new horror movie and the first since 2013’s The Lords of Salem, after reading that “Halloween is the number one day of the year when people go missing.” So naturally, in 31, five carnival workers, including one played by his wife Sheri Moon Zombie, go missing the night before Halloween and are held hostage in a large, creepy compound. “At the mercy of their captors,” the official plot description reads, “they are forced to play a twisted game or life or death called 31. For the next 12 hours, they must fight for their lives against an endless parade of homicidal maniacs.”
From the grisly trailer, it’s hard to tell whether 31 will be as morbidly fun as Zombie’s first two films, House of 1000 Corpses and The Devil’s Rejects, or as stale as his Halloween remakes. Let’s hope for the former — it’s time for movies to take back the “scary clown” mantle from television. Jon Watts’ Clown looks like one big “nope” (in a good way), and Zombie proved he’s adept at creepy clowns in The Devil’s Rejects. If 31 is a success, he should direct a film based on the pop-up clowns that terrorized the good people of Wasco and Chicago a few years back. It might literally be the scariest movie ever.
Unless the clown smokes a Groucho Marx cigar.