Bizarre horror movie released in 1932. Directed by Tod Browning and written by Al Boasberg and Willis Goldbeck. Starred, for the most part, a bunch of real carnival freaks -- not actors in makeup -- including midget siblings Harry Earles and Daisy Earles, trumpet-playing Siamese twins Violet and Daisy Hilton, pinhead Schlitze, "Half-Woman, Half-Man" Josephine Joseph, human torso Johnny Eck, Frances O'Connor (the Turtle Girl), and Peter Robinson (the Living Human Skeleton). The primary non-freak stars were Wallace Ford, Leila Hyams, Olga Baclanova, Roscoe Ates, and Henry Victor.

Basically, it's about a scheming beauty and her strongman beau who hatch a plot in which the beauty will marry a wealthy midget at the carnival where they all work, kill him, and steal his money. The villains put on a good act, but at the wedding dinner, when the other freaks of the circus chant, "Gabba gabba, we accept you, we accept you, one of us," the beauty loses her cool and rants about how disgusted she is by the freaks. Wise to her ploy, the freaks eventually hunt down the "normals" and get their revenge. The climax takes place in a nighttime downpour as the freaks hop and slither their way through the mud to get to the villains -- it's an astounding, horrifying image that hasn't been duplicated in cinema since.

When it was released, the film caused a major controversy and was met with almost-universal horror and derision. It was banned in many parts of the United States and in England. It is still supposed to be banned in Sweden. Browning, who had previously won great acclaim as the director of "Dracula", had trouble finding work in Hollywood again, and some of the movie's stars later denounced the film as exploitive (of course, most were working in freak shows anyway -- how dignified could that be?). Nowadays, it's more of a curiosity than anything else, although the story is plenty creepy.

Some research from the Internet Movie Database (www.imdb.com)