Down 201 this week

Freaks (1932)

Unrated  |   |  Drama, Horror  |  20 February 1932 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.0/10 from 30,627 users  
Reviews: 247 user | 181 critic

A circus' beautiful trapeze artist agrees to marry the leader of side-show performers, but his deformed friends discover she is only marrying him for his inheritance.



(suggested by story: "Spurs") (as Tod Robbins)
0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.00 on Amazon Video

1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Documentary | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

Feature film examining the existence of films in which people are murdered on camera and the culture surrounding them. Through interviews with former FBI Profilers, Cultural Academics, and ... See full summary »

Director: Paul von Stoetzel
Stars: Larry C. Brubaker, Todd Cobery, Linda Flanders
Comedy | Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Mary Shelley reveals the main characters of her novel survived: Dr. Frankenstein (goaded by an even madder scientist) builds his monster a mate.

Director: James Whale
Stars: Boris Karloff, Elsa Lanchester, Colin Clive
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.1/10 X  

A prank goes too far for the popular students at Hamilton High as they begin to pay for their actions 10 years later at their high school reunion.

Director: Steve Goltz
Stars: Kaleb Shorey, Marla Van Lanen, Kevin Sommerfield
Action | Comedy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 2.5/10 X  

In this action comedy, Jack Goldwater, an IRS agent on loan to the Federal Air Marshal Service, is relieved of field duty after insulting a powerful U.S. Senator, and finds himself exiled ... See full summary »

Director: J. Neil Schulman
Stars: Nichelle Nichols, Ethan Keogh, Susan Smythe
King Kong (1933)
Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A film crew goes to a tropical island for an exotic location shoot and discovers a colossal giant gorilla who takes a shine to their female blonde star.

Directors: Merian C. Cooper, Ernest B. Schoedsack
Stars: Fay Wray, Robert Armstrong, Bruce Cabot
Peeping Tom (1960)
Drama | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A young man murders women, using a movie camera to film their dying expressions of terror.

Director: Michael Powell
Stars: Karlheinz Böhm, Anna Massey, Moira Shearer
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Young filmmaker decides to make a movie of his life.

Director: Jim McBride
Stars: L.M. Kit Carson, Eileen Dietz, Louise Levine
Frankenstein (1931)
Drama | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

An obsessed scientist assembles a living being from parts of exhumed corpses.

Director: James Whale
Stars: Colin Clive, Mae Clarke, Boris Karloff
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A quiet but disturbed young man puts the life of a woman he's obsessed with under a virtual microscope when he installs hidden cameras throughout her house.

Director: Eric Nicholas
Stars: Ana Claudia Talancón, Colin Hanks, Jordana Spiro
Dracula (1931)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The ancient vampire Count Dracula arrives in England and begins to prey upon the virtuous young Mina.

Director: Tod Browning
Stars: Bela Lugosi, Helen Chandler, David Manners
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Dr. Caligari's somnambulist, Cesare, and his deadly predictions.

Director: Robert Wiene
Stars: Werner Krauss, Conrad Veidt, Friedrich Feher
Nosferatu (1922)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Vampire Count Orlok expresses interest in a new residence and real estate agent Hutter's wife. Silent classic based on the story "Dracula."

Director: F.W. Murnau
Stars: Max Schreck, Greta Schröder, Ruth Landshoff


Cast overview, first billed only:
Roscoe Ates ...
Roscoe (as Rosco Ates)
Harry Earles ...
Daisy Earles ...
Rose Dione ...
Madame Tetrallini
Daisy Hilton ...
Violet Hilton ...
Schlitze ...
Half Woman-Half Man
Johnny Eck ...
Half Boy
Frances O'Connor ...
Armless Girl
Peter Robinson ...
Human Skeleton


A circus trapeze artist, Cleopatra, takes an interest in Hans, a midget who works in the circus sideshow. Her interest however is in the money Hans will be inheriting and she is actually carrying on an affair with another circus performer, Hercules. Hans's fiancée does her best to convince him that he is being used but to no avail. At their wedding party, a drunken Cleopatra tells the sideshow freaks just what she thinks of them. Together, the freaks decide to make her one of their own. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Can a full grown woman truly love a MIDGET ? See more »


Drama | Horror


Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





| |

Release Date:

20 February 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Forbidden Love  »

Box Office


$310,607 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Premiere voted this movie as one of "The 25 Most Dangerous Movies". See more »


During the scene in which Hans' friends menace Cleopatra in the wagon, the flute soundtrack doesn't match the finger movements of the dwarf playing the flute. See more »


Cleopatra: Well, holy jumping Christmas!
See more »


Referenced in The TV Wheel (1995) See more »


Dancing Dolls
Music by Julius Seredy
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

'Freaks' is an extraordinary movie with a lot of heart.
20 May 2004 | by (Perth, Australia) – See all my reviews

I really dig 1930s horror movies. There's just something special about them that can never be recreated. A lot of it has to do with the talkies being new territory, many of the directors adapting German Expressionist techniques to Hollywood melodrama, and the freedom allowed before the Hayes Code really kicked in. Movies like 'Dracula', 'Frankenstein', 'Bride Of Frankenstein', 'Island Of Lost Souls', 'The Invisible Man' and 'White Zombie' are horror classics which still impress today. I wonder whether anyone will be watching the lame horror movies of today in seventy years for any other reason than some cheap laughs? Todd Browning made the transition from silent movies and directed the hugely successful 'Dracula' in 1931. It was a sensation and made Bela Lugosi a horror icon. Browning could pretty much do anything he chose after that. He chose to do 'Freaks'. Great for us as, not so great for him. The movie was universally reviled and even banned in some countries and his career never fully recovered. But 'Freaks' is an extraordinary movie with a lot of heart. It has faults, sure - some corny acting at times, and not so great production values - but it really doesn't matter. I don't know anyone who's seen it who hasn't been deeply affected by it. The reason the movie caused such a negative reaction back in the 1930s was because it used real circus performers including Zip the Pinhead and Radian "The Living Torso". Many people found this to be distasteful and exploitative, but the performers seemed to be glad to get the opportunity to work, and the whole crux of the movie is that the "freaks" are more decent than the "normal" Cleopatra (Olga Baclanova) , the trapeze artist who marries little person Hans (Harry Earls) for his money. 'Freaks' is still a very powerful and unique movie. It has inspired many creative people over the years from the Surrealists to The Ramones to Jodorowsky to David Lynch. 'Freaks' comes with my highest recommendation!

107 of 120 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Really a HORROR movie? gemininyc
The Ending was a step backwards Udo666
NOT a cult movie! vanessa_woolf
About the torso man Movie_Guy_87
Your favorite freak? SlipGun
Carnival Horror Movies rduke72
Discuss Freaks (1932) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: