THERE NEVER WAS, before or since, a movie like FREAKS, a 1932 film by horror-master Tod Browning (director of Bela Lugosi's DRACULA), and, safe to say, there probably never will be again.
Today it is a cult classic, but in its day FREAKS was considered too horrifying, and public outrage forced it to be withdrawn from distribution.
The sideshow "freaks" were all played by persons with real deformities. No special-effects makeup was used, except in one brief scene at the end of the movie.
The lengthy prologue that scrolls up the screen at the beginning of the film includes these lines: "Never again will such a story be filmed, as modern science and teratology is rapidly eliminating such blunders of nature from the world."
The script for FREAKS.