3 from Hell

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Not to be confused with S from Hell, a nickname given to the Screen Gems logo.

3 from Hell
3-from-hell-poster.jpeg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byRob Zombie
Produced by
Written byRob Zombie
Starring
Music byZeuss[1]
CinematographyDavid Daniels
Edited byGlenn Garland
Production
company
Distributed byLionsgate
Release date
  • September 16, 2019 (2019-09-16)
Running time
115 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$3 million[2]
Box office$10.2 million[3]

3 from Hell is a 2019 American horror film written, co-produced, and directed by Rob Zombie. It is the third installment in the Firefly trilogy, which began with House of 1000 Corpses (2003), and stars Bill Moseley, Richard Brake, Zombie's wife Sheri Moon Zombie and Sid Haig. The plot follows an incarcerated Otis Driftwood and Baby Firefly being freed by Otis' half-brother, after barely surviving a police shootout a decade ago.

Unlike the previous installments, 3 from Hell was given a special three-night theatrical engagement through Fathom Events from September 16—18, 2019, and received a mixed response from film critics.[4] Since it grossed nearly $2 million, Fathom Events gave it a one-night release on October 14, before being released on home video the following day.

Plot[edit]

The film opens with several news reports covering the events of the prior film. Through the reports, it is revealed that Baby, Otis, and Captain Spaulding miraculously survived their shootout with the police and that they will be tried for their crimes. The trial is widely covered nationwide and becomes a cause célèbre, resulting in the organization of protests that insist the trio's innocence. Numerous fanatics also adopt the chant "Free the Three", claiming that their crimes were committed as a means to fight against the system. Despite this, all three are found guilty and sentenced to life in prison. In addition to the final verdict, Captain Spaulding is executed via lethal injection. Otis' half-brother, Winslow Foxworth "Foxy" Coltrane, shows up to help Otis escape from prison while he is outside doing work on a chain gang. In the process, Otis kills Rondo, who was also on the chain gang after having been arrested some time after the end of the previous film and been sent to the same prison, but did not recognize Otis. Meanwhile, Baby unsuccessfully seeks parole, as her mental state has further deteriorated since her incarceration.

Once free, Otis and Foxy begin planning to free Baby from prison. To accomplish this, they kidnap the family and friends of the prison's warden, Virgil Dallas Harper. Otis and Foxy demand that Harper help Baby sneak out of prison or they will murder everyone they hold hostage. Harper follows their commands and sneaks Baby out of prison by disguising her as a guard. However, once Baby is freed, Otis and Foxy decide to eliminate the loose ends and kill all the hostages, as well as Harper. Now united, the three are undecided as to what to do next but eventually decide to flee to Mexico, a decision that is made more pressing due to Baby's growing instability.

Otis, Baby, and Foxy manage to successfully cross the border and flee to a small town in Mexico that is celebrating the Day of the Dead and hole up in the town's lone hotel. They briefly worry about being recognized but dismiss these concerns, unaware that the hotel's owner has in fact recognized them and has alerted Rondo's son, Aquarius, to their location. The owner keeps them occupied with both the celebration and local prostitutes, while Aquarius heads out to the location with several henchmen in tow. The following morning, Baby bonds with a local worker, Sebastian, who notices Aquarius's arrival. He warns Baby of the danger before running to warn Otis, just as Aquarius's men break into the whorehouse. Otis and Sebastian hold off the attackers until Foxy arrives and rescues them both. Otis separates from them, managing to successfully find the hotel owner and kill him. During this time, Baby manages to kill several of Aquarius's men using a bow and arrow set she took from Harper's house. Eventually, Foxy and Baby are outmatched by Aquarius and taken prisoner. During this, Aquarius tells Sebastian he's not worth the bullet and leaves him for dead. Aquarius and his remaining goons use Baby and Foxy to draw Otis out into the open.

Otis appears, and squares off against one of Aquarius's men in a knife fight while Sebastian sneaks up and silently frees both Foxy and Baby. This enrages Aquarius, distracting his man in the knife fight and allowing Otis to gain the upper hand. He, Baby, and Foxy manage to overpower Aquarius, however Sebastian is shot and killed in the process. The film ends with the trio immolating Aquarius before walking off into the Mexican town.

Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

Principal photography began on March 13, 2018[18] and wrapped on April 10, 2018.[19] The Sybil Brand Institute in Los Angeles, a decommissioned women's prison, served as one filming location.

Post-production was postponed five months to allow completion of Zombie's and Marilyn Manson's tour. The editing process began on September 11, 2018 with sound mixing commencing on March 15, 2019, and completed by the end of April.

According to Rob Zombie, Sid Haig was originally going to have a larger role, but was unable to commit for the whole film due to health issues. As a result, the script was rewritten to introduce Richard Brake's character to take his place.[20] Haig passed away shortly after the film was released on September 21, 2019.[21]

Release[edit]

The first trailer was released in June 2019. Fathom Events held an unrated three-day theatrical release from September 16—18, 2019. The first night featured a special video introduction with Zombie and a commemorative poster. The second featured a behind-the-scenes look at a making-of and all Cinemark locations will be distributing an exclusive bumper sticker designed by Zombie. The third night included a double feature of 3 from Hell and The Devil's Rejects.[22]

The film earned $1.92 million which was successful enough that Fathom Events announced plans to return the film to theaters on October 14.[23]

Critical response[edit]

On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, 3 from Hell holds a 50% approval rating based on 28 critic reviews, with an average rating of 5.1/10. The consensus reads: "3 from Hell may be of interest to fans of the trilogy, but those not already on board with Rob Zombie's gory saga will find little to lure them in here."[24] On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 50 out of 100, indicating "Mixed or average reviews".[4]

Scout Tafoya of RogerEbert.com awarded the film four out of four stars, referring it as Zombie's "most earnest and laid back nightmare yet."[25] Shawn Garrett of Rue Morgue, while conceding that there are "no surprises here," deemed the film "a fitfully entertaining exercise in ‘more of the same’ as grimy crime film.”[26] Cody Hamman JoBlo.com awarded the film seven out of ten, writing: "While I do still wish the ending of The Devil's Rejects had been the end for these characters, I did find 3 from Hell to be a decent sequel."[27] During the premiere, Kevin Smith called the film "horror heaven."[28]

Luke Y. Thompson of Forbes said of the main actors "all three deserve better than re-quel hell."[29] Meagan Navarro of Consequence of Sound wrote, "Having been down these exact same roads before, the climax is bereft of any tension and stakes...by the time the end credits roll, you feel it."[30] A.A. Dowd of The A.V. Club found the film unnecessary, giving it a D+ and calling it "a slow death by nostalgia."[31] Similarly, John Squires of Bloody Disgusting awarded the film one-and-a-half skulls out of five, writing: "3 from Hell is proof that sometimes in horror, dead really is better."[32] Comics Beat reviewer Edward Douglas deemed the film "easily, the worst movie of the year."[33]

Home media[edit]

It was released on DVD and Blu-ray on October 15, 2019.[34]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Thompson, Rocco (September 11, 2019). "Interview: Rob Zombie and Bill Moseley On "3 From Hell"". Rue Morgue. Retrieved September 12, 2019.
  2. ^ Nichols, Mackenzie (September 12, 2019). "Rob Zombie on 'The Hunt' Cancellation and Working With Low Budgets". Variety. Retrieved September 20, 2019.
  3. ^ "Rob Zombie's 3 From Hell (2019)". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. Retrieved October 18, 2019.
  4. ^ a b "3 from Hell". Metacritic. Retrieved October 21, 2019.
  5. ^ "Sid Haig Will Return as Captain Spaulding in Rob Zombie's 3 FROM HELL". nofspodcast.com. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  6. ^ "RobZombieofficial on Instagram: "You must have three names to qualify for your own chair. #3fromhell #robzombie #sherimoonzombie #jeffdanielphillips"". Instagram. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  7. ^ "Danny Trejo added to the cast of Rob Zombie's 3 FROM HELL | Nightmare on Film Street - Horror Movie Podcast, News and Reviews". nofspodcast.com. 2018-04-04. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  8. ^ "RobZombieofficial on Instagram: "More casting news. Our friend Dee Wallace has joined the gang in 3 FROM HELL. #3fromhell #robzombie #deewallace"". Instagram. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  9. ^ "Rob Zombie Adds Another Horror Legend to 3 FROM HELL | Nightmare on Film Street - Horror Movie Podcast, News and Reviews". nofspodcast.com. 2018-03-21. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  10. ^ "RobZombieofficial on Instagram: "Casting news: Dan Roebuck returns as Morris Green. Ruggsville's favorite TV personality. #robzombie #3fromhell #danroebuck"". Instagram. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  11. ^ "RobZombieofficial on Instagram: "Casting news update: zombie regular Jeff Daniel Phillips is back. #3fromhell #robzombie #jeffdanielphillips"". Instagram. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  12. ^ "RobZombieofficial on Instagram: "Day 4 shooting 3 From Hell. Reporting the breaking news out of Ruggsville is very serious business. Just ask Austin Stoker. #3fromhell…"". Instagram. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  13. ^ "RobZombieofficial on Instagram: "Another of shooting 3 From Hell is done. Yes, Emilio Rivera has joined our cast. I wonder how he fits in? #robzombie #3fromhell…"". Instagram. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  14. ^ "RobZombieofficial on Instagram: "Some of you already guessed it. Clint Howard has joined the cast of 3 From Hell. #robzombie #3fromhell #clinthoward"". Instagram. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  15. ^ "Danny Trejo Rides Into Rob Zombie's '3 From Hell'! - Bloody Disgusting". bloody-disgusting.com. 2018-04-03. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  16. ^ "RobZombieofficial on Instagram: "Good old Schizo-Head from 31 David Ury has joined the cast of 3 From Hell. #robzombie #3fromhell #davidury"". Instagram. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  17. ^ "RobZombieofficial on Instagram: "That's right folks! El Superbeasto himself @tompapa has joined the cast of 3 From Hell. #robzombie #3fromhell #tompapa"". Instagram. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  18. ^ "RobZombieofficial on Instagram: "It's all true! Day One shooting Three From Hell! The murder and madness continues. #robzombie #sherimoonzombie #billmoseley…"". Instagram. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  19. ^ Squires, John (April 12, 2018). "As Filming Ends, Bill Moseley Raves That '3 from Hell' is a Rob Zombie Masterpiece". Bloody Disgusting. Retrieved April 13, 2018.
  20. ^ Collis, Clark. "Rob Zombie reveals 'complete chaos' behind the creation of Devil's Reject's sequel 3 from Hell".
  21. ^ "Horror icon Sid Haig, actor from 'House of 1,000 Corpses,' dies at 80". EW.com. Retrieved 2019-09-23.
  22. ^ Hipes, Patrick (June 2, 2019). "Rob Zombie's '3 From Hell' Sets September Release In Fathom Deal". Deadline. Retrieved September 7, 2019.
  23. ^ Mendelson, Scott (September 20, 2019). "Box Office: Rob Zombie's '3 From Hell' Will Return To Theaters After $1.92 Million Three-Day Gross". Forbes. Retrieved September 20, 2019.
  24. ^ "3 from Hell". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved October 6, 2019.
  25. ^ Tafoya, Scout (September 13, 2019). "3 from Hell". RogerEbert.com. Retrieved September 17, 2019.
  26. ^ Garrett, Shawn M. (September 17, 2019). "REVIEW: "3 FROM HELL" (OR…ROB ZOMBIE CASHES IN)". Rue Morgue. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
  27. ^ Hamman, Cody (September 16, 2019). "3 From Hell (Movie Review)". JoBlo.com. Retrieved September 17, 2019.
  28. ^ Sprague, Mike (September 18, 2019). "Kevin Smith calls 3 From Hell "Horror Heaven"". JoBlo.com. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
  29. ^ Thompson, Luke Y. (September 17, 2019). "Review: '3 From Hell' Sees Rob Zombie Go On Auto-Pilot". Forbes. Retrieved September 24, 2019.
  30. ^ Navarro, Meagan (September 17, 2019). "Film Review: Rob Zombie's 3 From Hell Is a Meandering Repeat". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
  31. ^ Dowd, A.A. (September 17, 2019). "Rob Zombie unleashes The Devil's Rejects again in the tedious sequel 3 From Hell". The A.V. Club. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
  32. ^ Squires, John (September 16, 2019). "[Review] Rob Zombie Succeeds Only in Tarnishing His Best Film with Aimless Followup '3 from Hell'". Bloody Disgusting. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
  33. ^ Douglas, Edward (September 17, 2019). "REVIEW: Rob Zombie's 3 FROM HELL could be the worst movie of the year". Comics Beat. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
  34. ^ "3 From Hell Blu-ray". blu-ray.com. September 2, 2019. Retrieved September 8, 2019.

External links[edit]