Circus of Fear 3D 2012

Scare FactorActingSets/FXLengthOverall
Ryan78887.75
Bill8.59.59.58.59
Jason45554.75
Alex5101088.25
Marlena67877
Corey88998.5
Peyton56776.25
Overall6.217.648.077.507.36

Ryan Acker

Circus of Fear is back for its sophomore year in its new location right off of Evans and Santa-Fe. This year it feels much more like a circus and carnival as they have fun bloody games and jump castles. From the ticket gate the ladies were all dressed in clown gear putting me in the mood to be injected into a fun circus freak haunt. I was a little disappointed once I got inside.

There were many more 3D Portraits of demonic clowns and skeletons, but besides the artwork the sets were nothing more than just walls. The only thing that saved the initial scare factor was the actors. Many of them participated in activities that made you believe the 3D effects were real such as walking down stairs on flat ground, grabbing dots on the walls, and hanging off arms of a skeleton.

My favorite actor was obsessed with those dots. She begged and begged us to help count her dot. I got 3 then had to leave! Her makeup was also my favorite as it was 3D as well, she blended in wonderfully with the walls. Also, they are the only haunt to have a slide, and when an actor bangs on the slide while you’re on it, it leads for quite a jolt.

At the very end of the haunt, my mood was ruined as I got lost twice. The ever changing maze threw me off as I was thrown out into a long hallway and thought I was behind the scenes. After exiting the haunt, going back in and actually going into a actor area, I was directed to the right pathway, which ended up being the same long hallway. It was quite disappointing as there was no directed path and the hallway and nothing happening.

Overall, they really do seem like a traveling Circus. I would hope that in coming years they learn to shy away from just painting on walls and actually begin working on sets. However, they’re already on the right track for acting!

Pros: Acting, 3D Artwork, Slide!

Cons: Confusion of Pathway, No real sets

Bill Bevis

It’s in 3D. Yup. 3D. You even get glasses. Can you spell:  “a-c-i-d f-l-a-s-h b-a-c-k?”  (Of course–I don’t know what that is, or means. . . . but I heard it somewhere, and thought it sounded cool, so I use it here). The circus-chick at the entrance with the crazy red hair even got more 3D than ACTUAL 3-D after puttin’ on them specs. Woooooo. I’m already dizzy.

The tent that houses the haunt is convincing, though it’s a little confusing as to where the entry is as one approaches from the parking lot and through the other attractions/side shows. The artwork is beautiful throughout, starting with the big painted 3D clown (did I mention this haunt is in 3D?) who’s crotch you duck under to enter. This haunt has minimal propping and the emphasis is on the characters and the 3D effects of the artwork.

The theme is based on a traveling-circus-comes-to-town-crazy-monkey-something-bad-happens-everybody-turns-evil-nutzo story. It’s a tad convoluted, and not quite believable, and a little forced—but circuses and carnivals and the weirdoes associated with same ALWAYS bring up creepy associations and a desire to peek voyeuristically—but not to get tooooo close.

The 3-D paint on the floor was very unsettling. It makes you believe there’re stairs going up, or down, where there aren’t, and don’t. I found myself having to slide my feet across the floor to convince my tripping mind that I wasn’t going to trip (nice turn-of-phrase, no?). The haunt weakens as you get close to the end. There’s no clear path, and our group got turned around and had to be helped a bit to find our way out. That was a break in the action for me, and it lost its thunder.

I enjoyed the 3D effects and the characters a lot (and I liked the room covered in a Lotta Dots), but If you’re looking for BIG props and a HUGE investment in animatronics, then this isn’t for you. But if you’re into alternative ideas and an interesting approach, check this haunt out.

Pros:  It’s in 3D. Beautiful artwork. It’s in 3D.

Cons:  Forced/convoluted/incomplete back story. Might leave me feeling a little gipped if expecting BIG effects. The ending.

Jason Peterson

Circus of Fear 3D haunted house is in a big black and red tent, located off a busy intersection, on a strip of grass. Alongside this large tent, they have some pretty cool carnival games, one such as shooting a zombie in the head with a cross bow. That was fun to watch. We make our way through the other side of the tent, where we meet our greeter. She is a pretty young woman with really cool face paint and costume, standing under a 12 foot wooden clown painting. She gives us the back story and hands us our 3D glasses, and that’s when I’m like, “this is new!”.

Immediately stepping into this haunt, you get some 3D punch from various murals and cool patterns that work along with the 3D effect. I did however see one too many paintings, murals, and rooms themed with paint that would entertain children rather than adults looking for darker, creepier, sets with a scarier theme. Polka dot rooms and giraffe murals definitely entertain a younger audience.

The acting in this haunt was pretty good in spots. The two girls in the beginning were crazy, then a Raggedy Anne style girly takes you on a cool little 3D ride. Watch your step here, it’s very disorienting! There was a spider area in the haunt and a young man lying on the floor convulsing in pain. He did a fantastic job. There was also a slide you had to slide down. I thought that was pretty cool and thought the way they painted it made it difficult to climb up the ladder.

I loved the carny feel you get when you pull up to this place, it makes me feel uncomfortable. I liked the fact that the haunt stuck to its theme and its story line. I did enjoy the show, however I feel it lacked detail and relied far too much on the 3D paintings and that affected the overall haunt experience for me. This haunt is great for family and children, not so much people who want gore, set immersion, or in your face acting with good makeup.

Pros: cool carnival setting

Cons: not so scary 3D paint, no set detail, could be longer

Alex Gallegos

Circus of Fear takes a unique approach to their haunted house. Using 3D glasses and neon paint they manage to make the images on the walls pop out at us. They used the paint even better this year, but they may be relying on it too much.

One of the neat things about this haunt is they take the time to give us some back story before we go in. The haunt itself stick to that story and the theme really well. There were some really well done rooms, with false bars on the lion cage and some guys in a real cage, where they could climb all over the bars. Those spaces were used well. The 3D paint was used really effectively in certain areas. They have this great giant skeleton. His arms on the walls and you have no choice but to walk between them to continue on. My other favorite was the stairs painted with the 3D Paint. The way it pops makes it really disorienting. There were just too many areas where the only set they had was the paint. It’s a really cool effect, but it doesn’t make a scene.

The acting was alright. There were some actors that were just a startle scare. Some of the actors in the rooms didn’t seem to know what to say. Then there were the actors that were really acting crazy. They had awesome, rambling speeches for us. It helped that the 3D effect was used in the actor’s makeup as well. It was cool because when you moved, the paint that popped out moved with you. So the actor’s faces seemed to be shifting and changing in ways that the human face shouldn’t. Not all the costumes were all that great. There’s a lion that just looks like a store bought suit, and not even a scary one. It was kind of cutesy.

It was certainly a neat experience. It wasn’t as scary as it could have been. Some areas needed to be more warped to give us that creeping feeling. The paint is a really cool effect, but it lost some of it’s oomph as we went through. It would be better to use it where it has the most impact all throughout.

Pros: Effects with the paint, some good actors

Cons: More weak acting, 3D effect overdone, needs more sets

Marlena Baker

Circus of Fear takes a unique approach to their haunted house. Using 3D glasses and neon paint they manage to make the images on the walls pop out at us. They used the paint even better this year, but they may be relying on it too much.

One of the neat things about this haunt is they take the time to give us some back story before we go in. The haunt itself stick to that story and the theme really well. There were some really well done rooms, with false bars on the lion cage and some guys in a real cage, where they could climb all over the bars. Those spaces were used well. The 3D paint was used really effectively in certain areas. They have this great giant skeleton. His arms on the walls and you have no choice but to walk between them to continue on. My other favorite was the stairs painted with the 3D Paint. The way it pops makes it really disorienting. There were just too many areas where the only set they had was the paint. It’s a really cool effect, but it doesn’t make a scene.

The acting was alright. There were some actors that were just a startle scare. Some of the actors in the rooms didn’t seem to know what to say. Then there were the actors that were really acting crazy. They had awesome, rambling speeches for us. It helped that the 3D effect was used in the actor’s makeup as well. It was cool because when you moved, the paint that popped out moved with you. So the actor’s faces seemed to be shifting and changing in ways that the human face shouldn’t. Not all the costumes were all that great. There’s a lion that just looks like a store bought suit, and not even a scary one. It was kind of cutesy.

It was certainly a neat experience. It wasn’t as scary as it could have been. Some areas needed to be more warped to give us that creeping feeling. The paint is a really cool effect, but it lost some of it’s oomph as we went through. It would be better to use it where it has the most impact all throughout.

Pros: Effects with the paint, some good actors

Cons: More weak acting, 3D effect overdone, needs more sets

Corey Dunham

The Circus of Fear located in south Denver is an amazing haunt with a very original idea that I personally have never seen used in any other haunt. This haunt has you put on 3D glasses before you enter and the whole attraction is in 3D! As I entered the complex it totally reminded me of a mini carnival or circus. There are concessions, slides, games, and much more.

As you come to the door you find that the circuses monkey Bubbles has escaped. As the story goes on you find out that in his escape he was infected by some unknown source and brought the infection back to the circus. All of the workers inside are sick and you must make your way through. I really liked the idea and story used here and knew I was in for a good time.

Once inside you are overwhelmed by all of the 3D effects used within the haunt. At every turn there is another amazing painting popping out towards you with major intensity. In one hallway there is a giant skull at the end with its arms reaching down either side of the hallway. As you begin to enter the skull man completely consumes you and you feel as if he is actually reaching out to get you. Also, there are steps painted different colors that appear to rise and lower as you walk over them. This was a great effect and used well. All of the different 3d effects used throughout were amazing and totally original, I really enjoyed all of the effects and think they should be used more.

The acting in this haunt was great and had good intensity. All of the actors did a good job scaring and used their surroundings well. Everyone stayed in character and were very believable. I did not hear many grr’s or boo’s which was awesome. The only thing I think the acting could use is more actors in the dead spots, other than that things were great and totally on point and original.

Altogether, The Circus of Fear is a great haunt with a very original concept that is not widely used. The 3d effects throughout are amazing, very original, and something you never see. From huge skulls consuming you to a mini carnival, everything is contained within! This is a great haunt for someone who wants to try something different and experience a new concept. I recommend The Circus of Fear to all looking for something amazingly different to satisfy their October needs.

Pros: Great effects, awesome painting, very original

Cons: Needs more actors in dead spots, could be longer, more actor intensity

Peyton Lucero

Walking up to this haunt, I’m surrounded with nothing but entertainment and dark feeling circus music. Around me was a bungee jump trampoline setup, lots of concessions filled with games involving dead people like the Double Tap undead arcade booth, a two story blow up slide and bouncy house, and foods of cotton candy and popcorn to spice up the evening. It was all so enjoyable and really gave it a circus environment. Waiting in line, I gaze upon the dark and neon colored facades, and in the middle is a tall painted neon clown that holds the entrance where his legs are. We step up next in line and are greeted by this joker type woman with a red Mohawk and wearing a corset dress, and given the history about Bubbles the ape that had escaped and infected the clowns within the circus. We were given 3D glasses and are told that these are our safety nets. That means if we take them off at any time during the haunt, we are now fair game to the infected. We are now let in and enter through the legs to begin our journey in this mind twisting haunted Circus of Fear.

Starting my adventure, I come across a lot of talented art work that really came to life with the 3D effect. I saw a lot of amazing effects that really tricked your mind into thinking they were usable. For instance, the up and down stair hallway. Looking at these stairs not only seemed trippy, but looked as if we were actually supposed to walk up and down them. The actress in this room did a fantastic job on working with the 3D effect. She lead us through this hallway stepping on the stairs, making it seem as if she was actually going up and down them. That was really cool, I give her props for pulling that effect off. Going up a ladder and sliding down a slide was a cool added effect. I really enjoyed the funny shaped pipe room. Once I entered, it seemed like an endless room of crazy, colored pipes. Fantastic effect, it really made it seem like the pipes were floating above us all over the room. The ending of this haunt was pretty cool. The actors were locked up in this animal circus cage and were full of energy and very intense! One dude actually jumped onto the cage and was shaking it like a maniac! One thing I thought was a little weird though was that, while leaving this room, I turn around to take one more look and I spot a big pink ape trying to get in one last scare. He just seemed a little random and also a little late on time.

My time at this haunt was very enjoyable and was surrounded by a lot of entertainment. I came across some pretty gnarly looking paintings and effects. One thing I thought seemed a little out of place were the animal paintings on the walls. Seemed like there were a few too many animals and at some points made it seem like I was looking at a zoo. It is a circus though, so in this case some of the animals belonged. Throughout the whole haunt it felt like I got all the intense actors at the end. Some were pretty good but most seemed to be unenthused and lacking energy and dialogue. Clowns that I know are supposed to be insane, witty, scary, and full of pranks. A circus should be full of energy and excitement, not just with the sets and props, but with motivated, energetic actors. That to me, is what makes a haunt or circus successful. This haunted attraction isn’t just any ordinary haunt, but is a three-dimensional, black light haunt with tons of 3D effects, some of which will just blow your mind and you’ll have to think more than once on what you’re doing. Right when you arrive, you’re entering the Circus of Fear 3D and their madness of some carnival games, rides, and more! If you want to experience this 3D haunted attraction, you will just have to come and see it for yourself to feel the real 3D effect!

Pros: cool 3D effects, outside entertainment, visuals

Cons: lots of animals, actors need intensity, might trip over illusion objects

CIRCUS OF FEAR
ADDRESS:
1720 S. Santa Fe DriveDenver, CO

PRICE:
  • $15.00
  • $23.00 VIP
  • $10.00 Fun House admission (5-7pm only)
  • $30.00 Super Circus Combo Pack
  • $25.00 Super Fun House Combo Pack
  • $1.00  Ride/Game Tickets (Price per ticket – sold only at the door)
DATES/HOURS:
8-10 PMOct. 12

7:30-10pm

Oct. 14, 28

7:30-11 PM

Oct. 13, 21

8-11 PM

Oct. 19, 30

7:30-Midnight

Oct. 20, 27

8-12PM

Oct. 26, 31

NOTES:
PREVIEW:

On a moonless autumn night, in a small hamlet in Northern Colorado, the wagon train of a small travelling circus has rolled into town and set up its tents in a mostly vacant field on the outskirts of town. In their rush to unload the wagons, feed the animals and set up the circus before dawn, the road-weary roustabouts are unaware of the escape of one of the circus monkeys. Bubbles the monkey happily makes his way through the shadows of the circus freight and enters the dark, quiet field, unnoticed by anyone. And no one is there to hear his whimpers of fear and pain turn to howls of hunger and rage.

It isn’t until dawn, that the Ringmaster notices the absence of Bubbles, his favorite monkey, and musters a search party of all the clowns, freaks, roustabouts and carnies who have not yet sought their beds. As they emerge from the circle of tents, onto the frosty field, they behold the sun rising behind a dark and ominous metal object, covered in bizarre, alien symbols. Curled up beneath the strange device is Bubbles, a grimacing, wild-eyed, tortured creature. He is barely recognizable to his beloved Ringmaster, who approaches him with sorrow. In an instant, before anyone can prevent the horror, Bubbles leaps at his Ringmaster and bites him on the neck. The nearest circus folk rush to restrain Bubbles and aid the bloody, unconscious Ringmaster. They quickly have Bubbles in a cage and the Ringmaster hoisted in the arms of the Strong Man. As they swiftly retreat from the mysterious artifact, the Ringmaster suddenly opens his bloodshot eyes wide, and cries, foam dripping from his mouth:

“Hurry, my friends! The feast — I mean, the show — must go on!”

The rest of the events of this day, leading up to their Opening Night in this unsuspecting Colorado town, are unknown. However, we do know that no member of this travelling circus remains untouched or unaltered…