Sideshow horror showdown! Side Sho vs. Sideshow

It’s time for two low budget freakshows with the same name! And the great news is, the missing “w” in Side Sho helps you distinguish these two treasures in your vast horror collection (by “your,” I mean “my” of course).

SIDE SHO

 side-sho

2007 backwoods flick Side Sho offers some chuckles, good gore, boobies (eek!), makes you jump a few time, and actually has a few effective (if cliché) suspense moments and stylish horror setups. It will also most definitely make you—dare I say it—guffaw! That’s right. I said guffaw. Personally, after the terrible opening theme song, I was pleasantly surprised at how entertained I was by the film itself.

side sho family

Yeah. It’s low budget. Cheesy. Laughable at times. But whether or not any of this was intentional, the campy results make this worthy of at least a run on the SyFy network. The dedicated cast creates a little horror film that, despite having boobs, blood, deformed freaks, and gruesome embryos in jars, somehow feels like The Hills Have Eyes lite. No torture porn to scar you for life.

side sho kid

A nice family is looking for an old sideshow location in the backwoods of Florida. They meet random bizzaro hillbillies along the way, and you can pretty much guess how things will play out. Although, what you don’t expect is that for a while, the only ones dying are the gang of hillbillies! These city folk are SO on top of their redneck killing game! It’s rather refreshing. The first “good guy” doesn’t get it until an hour and 2 minutes into this hour and 28 minute movie! I think the hillbillies are the be-otches who made the wrong turn.

side sho freak

Other highlights include awesome kills, a lesbo kiss, a human dog (amazing performance by the man playing the part), someone falling and fucking up their ankle while NOT running away from a killer, and mesmerizing fight scenes. Plus, one of the rednecks is not deformed and is kind of hot in a dirty “I’m going to make you squeal like a pig after I’ve already butchered you” kind of way….

SIDESHOW

sideshow

This sideshow double feature finishes with the 2000 film Sideshow by Full Moon Features. Okay. It’s Full Moon, so you should kind of go in knowing what to expect. And it’s only like an hour and 10 minutes if you exclude the credits. And actually, it should only be a fricking half hour Tales from the Crypt episode.

What we have here is a cheesy Full Moon adaptation of Ray Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes­, which is one of my favorite books and movies. A group of teens goes to a carnival and their hopes and dreams come true with a nasty twist.

sideshow cast

The best part of the movie—aside from the fact that all 3 guys in the film are cute as hell—is the sequence in which we get to meet the freaks in the show. Inside-out woman. The chick who can eat anything…because she lives in a vat of digestive acid (and shows her boobs). The dude with his brother growing out of his body (Basket Case anyone?). And the gnarly looking bug man pictured on the DVD case.

sideshow no face

There’s also an appearance by b-movie scream queen Brinke Stevens as a fortuneteller, and this little dude Phil Fondacaro as the carnival barker. We all know Phil when we see him…because we’ve most likely seen him playing a carnival staffer in one of several other horror films. Is that the only role we can give to little people?

sideshow phil

By the ending of Sideshow, when I realized this should have been nothing more than a 20-minute segment in a Creepshow film (I know. I downgraded it from 30 to 20 minutes within 4 paragraphs), I decided that I should have watched these films in the opposite order. For the cost of admission, Side Sho just gives us a better bad show than Sideshow.

About Daniel

I am the author of the horror anthologies CLOSET MONSTERS: ZOMBIED OUT AND TALES OF GOTHROTICA and HORNY DEVILS, and the horror novels COMBUSTION and NO PLACE FOR LITTLE ONES.

I am also the founder of BOYS, BEARS & SCARES, a facebook page for gay male horror fans! Check it out and like it at www.facebook.com/BoysBearsandScares.

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