Comparing the Original and Remake House of Wax

Scary Movies and Series

Differences Between House of Wax (1953) and the Remake (2005)

New vs Old House of Wax

Wax is naturally scary and it becomes even creepier when molded in human form. The only thing worse than a human wax figure is probably an entire building made of wax, considering we all subconsciously associate wax with melting. Constructing the suspense of a movie from within a wax building is wildly suspenseful.  That said, the two most notorious horror movies featuring a wax house killer stretch an amazing 52 years apart!  And what is even more amazing is that these two movies (both featuring a giant wax museum and killer inside) are nearly nothing alike!

How is the New House of Wax (2005) Different From the 1953 Original

House of Was Original Movie Poster with women being attacked by was man

Besides the fact both movies center around the deaths of people by a wax-obsessed killer, largely from within a wax museum, these movies are very different in plot.

How the Killer Came to Be

The 1953 original House of Wax features an associate of the wax museum who burns down the museum with the owner inside. The owner survives the fire, becoming a psychopathic killer.

The 2005 remake of House of Wax paints the killer as mentally challenged child abused by a twisted surgeon father and a sick wax-sculpting mother. The child, Vincent, grows up to become one hell of a wax artist, and a vengeful killer.

Killer’s Presence

Vincent wax killer from House of Wax movie.

The 1953 original has an almost “dr jekyll and mr hyde” feel, as the emerged killer possesses a different psychological makeup.  What’s more is, the killer is known to be alive 18 months after the fire, thus the victims are able to interact with the killer.

The 2005 remake hides the killer in the basements of the town Ambrose and within the catacombs of the House of Wax unbeknownst to his victims until it is too late.

The Town Isn’t In On It

The 1953 original features a single psychopathic killer who kills from his museum. The town is not in on it. There is no focus on a town setup with fake wax people. His family is not in on it.

The 2005 remake provides a couple of brothers to assist the wax killer Vincent, Bo and (presumed to be) Lester, the Roadkill Collector. The brothers setup and entire town of fake wax people, and it appears the entire town is unsafe.  The killers kill and hunt all over town and all types of weapons are utilized.

Principal Photography Location

The 1953 original is shot primarily in Queensland, Australia.


The 2005 remake was filmed in good old California!

And Basically Everything Else

Although the two films share a name and even the setting of a big wax museum of death…the plots and mechanics of the movie itself are totally different and both equally as creative.  The remake has a significant leg up on the original in modern cinematics and effects, however, ultimately there is nothing like a good psychological Horror – no matter the release year!


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