Firefly Trilogy – Franchise Catch Up

My uncle recommended me the Firefly trilogy, as he’s a massive fan of them, especially of Captain Spaulding. Before watching them, my only idea of them is that they are low-budget horror films made by Rob Zombie. I don’t know anything beyond that but I expect them to be violent and gory.

For those that are new, Franchise Catch Up is where I take a series of films (of at least 3 or more) and binge watch them, writing a initial thoughts for each one shortly after watching it. If you haven’t seen the Firefly trilogy and are curious, or you love the franchise and want to see what a newbie thinks, I hope you enjoy.

House of 1000 Corpses

To be honest I had the completely wrong idea about this film. I thought it was going to be a gross out horror film like Saw, but it wasn’t. Instead, there is a lot of comedy some stylish editing and scene transitions and a great soundtrack. I suppose I should have expected nothing less from Rob Zombie. Captain Spaulding is a great character, and the film is a lot of fun in general. It does get gruesome at points, but it’s not the most extreme I’ve ever seen. The first half is a lot stronger than the later half where it becomes more standard horror, with the victims being chased and killed. Overall, it’s good.

The Devil’s Rejects

The comedy is toned down and replaced with some more uncomfortable moments. Again, it’s not extreme gore, but it is unsettling to say the least. The scene transitions are even wackier. Spaulding gets more screen time and is just great the whole way through. The moment where he’s threatening the child for not giving him a reason why he dislikes clowns is brilliant. It does have a few laugh out loud moments. It changes gears a lot throughout, when it’s creepy – it’s creepy and when it’s funny – it’s funny. It was almost cathartic when the tables turned towards the end and the final moments in the car were pretty brilliant. I have no idea how Zombie managed to follow this up, but I’m excited to find out.

Three from Hell

After the ending of the previous film, it’s almost impossible to imagine how they can continue the series. Rob Zombie tackles that head on by just stating they survive, all of them. There’s not even a moment of doubt that we’ll believe it when watching the film. I have mixed feelings about this film, the first half is really great and the second half has it’s moments but it’s the weakest of the three. The group are in prison, with Captain Spaulding being executed very early on, probably due to Sid Haig’s declining health (he passed away very shortly after the film was released). The parts with the prison break are great. It’s twisted in the best way possible. When they escape to Mexico, there’s still some great moments, but it’s undercut by the army sent to kill them being awful at their job. They get the jump on them in almost every situation. It is still a decent film, and I enjoyed it but I preferred the first two.

Final Thoughts

The Firefly trilogy is not what I expected. I went in thinking I would be getting an all-out gross fest, but instead, while it has dark moments there’s a lot of comedy. I can’t decide which one is my favourite, but it’s definitely one of the first two. I enjoyed all three, and now want to watch everything else that Rob Zombie has made.

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About ashleymanningwriter

Young Adult Fiction writer. Horror and fantasy blended together.
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