Oldskooler Ramblings

the unlikely child born of the home computer wars

October of Horror #24: Waxwork (1988)

Posted by Trixter on October 29, 2018

(For an explanation of what these posts in October are, see the parent post.)


Upper-class high school friends check out a waxworks museum, only to get trapped in some of the exhibits.


Waxwork feels like it is trying to be a Charles Band/Full Moon horror movie but the final result has half the quality and even less charm.¬† It can’t decide if it’s trying to be a horror-comedy, flat horror, or just “quirky”, and it fails at all three.¬† Which is a shame, since the premise is somewhat original:¬† People who wander into incomplete waxworks scenes end up living the scene itself, and, if killed, becoming part of it forever.¬† It’s a great idea!¬† It’s just a shame the movie can’t pull off any of the three tiers of execution it is going for.

The low budget didn’t help.¬† Waxwork was filmed for $1.5 million.¬† If it had $1 million less money in the budget, it would have been a flawed but admirably ambitious film.¬† If it had $1 million more money in the budget, it would have been able to pull off more scary effects.¬† But what got onto celluloid just falls flat.¬† It’s even distracting to watch at times — some dialog gets cut together with dialog that feels like it was an alternate take with alternate lines.¬† One character fires a machine gun as he dies (trope alert), but since they couldn’t afford an automatic machine gun, you can see the character pulling the trigger while “dead”.¬† Some characters are caricatures while the two main characters play it completely straight.¬† It’s a mess.


I hate to kick a movie while it’s down (especially since, based on the commentary, everyone had a fun time making the film), but you should skip it.¬† For every scene that works, there are three that don’t.¬† Your time would be better spent watching 4 episodes of Tales from the Darkside (or even 4 episodes of Monsters).

One Response to “October of Horror #24: Waxwork (1988)”

  1. […] October of Horror #24: Waxwork (1988) […]

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