mum and dad
I LOVE AN ANTHOLOGY FILM, and this is one all about a great time of year; Halloween. "Ten stories are woven together by their shared theme of Halloween night in an American suburb, where ghouls, imps, aliens and axe murderers appear for one night only to terrorize unsuspecting residents." I had heard various things about this film, not all good mind you, but I was willing to give it a try, as I do every film. One thing that made me really want to see Tales of Halloween, other than it being a horror film, was the cast, especially hearing John Landis had something to do with it. I'll be honest, I didn't know what he played in it, or whether he directed it or so, but I was in, just hearing he had something to do with it, I was in.
As this is also an anthology, I am going to do it in a slightly different way, I am going to review each section separately, as I feel each story has its own charm and mind behind it - ones that you need to hear about.
Sweet Tooth - Sweet Tooth is a fairly simple story, just following a simple urban legend story about a young boy whose parents eat all his Halloween candy, so he kills them - that old chestnut. This follows the old cliché of the babysitter telling the kid the story, but then admitting to it being fake...or is it?! Hmmmmmm. I don't want to give it away, if you can't work it out already, but it's fun, it's nice and easy. Not the most thought out story of the lot, but it's just easy and started the whole movie off well.
The Night Billy Raised Hell - This one is a weird one - shout out to Barry Bostwick in a crazy little costume that makes him very much unrecognizable. Long story short, kid tries to egg a house, is taken on a crazy Halloween night by the Devil and is tricked into doing pranks - pranks that get more awful as the night goes on. As I stated at the start, this is a weird one, and one that I didn't think much of during it. It was going down the obscure route in some ways, and seemed to be just one to fill a gap or so. That is, until the end... I loved the twist to it, I adored the twist to it, the ending is one of the best ones and most original and one none of us watching saw coming. It didn't make the segment better, but it definitely tied it up well - and I just want to say, this segment is not awful, just not my favourite.
Trick - I have to say, this one kind of plays on my dislike of most kids... this story is about a group of friends, all having fun, drinking and smoking, when one answers the door to a dressed up little girl who out of nowhere stabs him. The whole segment then turns into a massacre run by kids, and killing the adults all in very original ways. Again, this one has a twist, a twist that we got kind of understood. It's quite low budget in some ways, so the last scene kind of looks a little fake - and that's what put us off with the idea of the twist. Put us off in the way we weren't sure if it was real or not - I really hope that makes sense. It's a good twist, but it is one we weren't sure if we were right with what we were thinking it meant...
The Weak and The Wicked - This again is another weird one, not one of my favourites at all. Bullied teenager basically pulls out all the stops with getting revenge on some bullies with some type of monster on Halloween night. It's okay, the scene when you find out what the bullies do is harsh, and monster looks great, and the last death is bloody, but they are the best things about it. It's like fifteen minutes and it passes the time, it's pretty fun, not the best but it's fun.
Grim Grinning Ghost - This one is probably my favourite out of all of them if I am honest. A woman leaves her mums Halloween party after hearing a spooky story about a ghost who follows people, on her way home, her car breaks down and she has to walk the rest of the way - I don't think I need to explain anymore. I feel you can see where it's going without me telling you - which I wouldn't anyway as I wouldn't want to spoil anything for you. This one is scary, it's damn creepy and mum was very very stressed out by it. It's a simple story, a well known story and one that is well loved - great! Best one of the bunch. Only thing I would say, you can see the ending coming from a mile off due to a camera angle, I would have liked a little trick and then a scare - that's all...
Ding Dong - Ohhhh, another weird one. This one the ending is very weird and not fully clear at all. A couple are sad to not a child, especially the woman, and the woman seems to be some witch type who realllllllyyyyyyyy is broody - I don't know how else to explain it! That's pretty much it. Pollyanna McIntosh is very weird and creepy in this, and is probably the best thing about it, after her transformation anyway - creeeeepppyyyy. The rest is weird.
This Means War - Ever seen that Christmas film called Deck The Halls where Matthew Broderick and Danny DeVito fight over having the best Christmas lights? This is basically that film, but done with Halloween decorations on Halloween... It's pretty damn fun, and entertaining and just strange but in a good way. And again, an ending that you really don't see coming. It pulls you in and distracts you from an ending you can't see coming - simple. Not award winning but entertaining. And more bloody than Deck The Halls.
Friday the 31st - Ohhhhh, this is a weird one, but I actually really liked it. I don't know how to describe it though, slasher serial killer kills his victim, and then an alien beams down... Doesn't it sound great but so damn weird?! It is, you'll watch it thinking, "What on earth?", but you'll "Awwwwww" over the alien and you'll just have a great time watching this insanely original little segment!
The Ransom Of Rusty Rex - This was the one I was wanting for, my favourite John Landis makes a cameo, and it's pretty good too even if he wasn't in it! Two criminals kidnap a rich guys kid hoping for a massive ransom, only for the dad to actually not want the kid back. It's a very interesting concept to say the least, and I liked it - you don't expect the whole story at all, at all. It's got pretty much everything in it but romance, all fitted into about ten or so minutes. I liked it a fair bit - and I am not being biased due to Mr Landis, I promise...
Bad Seed - And here we are, with the last little segment, and probably the strangest of the lot. Killer Pumpkins. Nothing more to say. Killer pumpkins on Halloween. What more could you want?! The only thing with this one, it has a little twist, and the idea of the twist is good, but how the twist is actually done and shown, is a little limp. Especially when this is to end the entire film. Apart from that, this is just a turn your brain off type of segment which is sometimes what you need, right?!
I did really like Tales of Halloween, I liked that it was an anthology, I loved the cast, (great thinking with having Adrienne Barbeau doing the voiceover between the different sections in the same way she did during The Fog - so damn clever!), and the stories were all original in some ways and it all just kept you on your toes. Kind of like a more family friendly - kind of - version of The ABCs of Death. This is the anthology you'd watch with your nan, the other - nope.
Not just there to raise you, also fun to watch scary films with...