The Best Acting I’ve Ever Seen: Richard Brake in 31

by | Jan 31, 2020

On this week’s edition of ‘The Best Acting I’ve Ever Seen‘ – let’s revisit Richard Brake’s enigmatic performance in Rob Zombie’s highly underrated ’31’ (2016).

The Actor: Richard Brake

The Film: 31 (2016)

Director: Rob Zombie

The Scene: Richard Brake’s ‘Doomhead’ opens the film in this first scene from Rob Zombie’s horror thriller ’31’. The monologue that Brake delivers here is unnerving, uncomfortable and chilling to the bone as he taunts a tied up victim before he ultimately murders him in a blood-drenched albeit black and white tour-de-force.

My thoughts: We’ve all seen the killer taunt his victims before in our horror films, but we’ve never witnessed anyone quite like Richard Brake do it. After Doomhead (Brake’s catchy psycho killer name) does his thing here it kind of makes every other slasher speech irrelevant. Brake is so scary and yet so enigmatic that you can’t help but fall in love with his grotesque gutter poetry. Zombie’s dialog has this ability to be equal parts trashy but authentically genius and there are some brilliant actors from his films that just click with his scripts – Brake is one of the best, if not the very best performers that Zombie has ever collaborated with. This is about 5 minutes of pure verbal torture at the hands of Brake’s iconic delivery and he makes us love every second of it as disturbing as it ultimately may be. Brake has delivered several incredible performances in supporting roles throughout the years, but this monologue which opens ’31’ is my favorite performance of Brake’s yet and dare I say some the best acting I’ve ever seen in my whole life – thank you Doomhead.