anthologies

[Movie Review] Tales of Halloween (2015) ★★★★☆

Friday the 31th and Ding Dong o

Tales of Halloween unleashes the spooky season.


Tales of Halloween is a horror comedy anthology film that centers around Halloween. In fact it tells ten different tales that all take place at the same night in the same town during Halloween Night, while radio DJ with the voice of Adrienne Barbeau connects all these fine spooky tales. Everything that has to do with Halloween passes by, trick or treating, watching horror movies on tv, the costumes, pumpkins, the decorations, candy, the pranks and more. With demons, ghosts, serial killers, evil kids, monsters, witches and psychopaths, they all come out to play. From a slasher, to science fiction, ghosts stories, creature features, fairytales, a kidnapping, gory campy fun, revenge, and comedy, even all sub genres in horror are represented in the different tales. While not every story is evenly good or funny or scary, there is something for everyone. They’re short enough to pick the story you like and fast forward the ones you don’t. Different directors and writers are treating us to 10 Tales of Halloween. 


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Plot

During one Halloween Night a town is getting more Halloween fun and/or terror than they might have asked for. 


Sweet Tooth ★★☆☆☆

(Directed & written by Dave Parker)

Trick or treat is about collecting as many candy as you can. But there’s a legend about Timothy, who wasn’t allowed to keep the candy and now he’s always hungry. So if you eat candy that doesn’t belong to you, watch out for Timothy. This one is a bloody gory mess of sticky sweetness and intestines and a candy-loving monster. Fun fact is that they watch Night of the Living Dead (1968) on tv and we are shown a candy bar named Carpenter.


The Night Billy Raises Hell ★★★☆☆

(Directed by Darren Lynn Bousman & written by Clint Sears )

When Billy has to egg a house that belongs to a man who never hands out candy, he gets caught and the night has a special trick in store for Billy. It’s all about pranks and it has a devilishly fun twist. 


Trick ★★☆☆☆

(Directed by Adam Gierasch & written by Greg Commons) 

It’s time for trick or treat. Two couples are watching tv, again of course Night of the Living Dead, and they hand out candy, when the doorbell rings. A normal Halloween evening, until a little witch shows up and stabs the man in his guts. In this little story, nothing is what it seems. The twist is a big surprise and it can go a lot of ways before the plot is revealed. 


The Weak and the Wicked ★★☆☆☆

(Directed by Paul Solet & written by Molly Millions)

When an evil gang raises hell, then hell is what you are going to sow. Well acted, but not my favorite of the bunch. 


Grim Grinning Ghost ★★★★★

(Directed & written by Axelle Carolyn)

Lin Shaye is telling a ghost story to some people at home. When one of the guests leaves, she gets the feeling she’s being followed… Great storytelling and jump scares, nice timing and they are watching Carnival of Souls (1962).


Ding Dong ★★★★☆

(Directed & written by Lucky McKee)

Ding Dong the witch is dead, so it goes in The Wizard of Oz. But that is not necessarily the outcome for every witch. Bobbie and Jack love to have kids, but it didn’t happen for them yet. So handing out candy can be a bit difficult for Bobbie. But not per se in the way we think. Very originally shot, great twist and everything looks good and it is told with dark humor. We also see the children who played a big part in ‘Trick,’ trick or treating at Bobbie and Jack. 


This Means War ★★★★☆

(Directed by Andrew Kasch & written by John Skipp, Andrew Kasch)

This is the odd one out. There’s no supernatural plot and no psychopaths show up, but just neighbors getting into a fight over the Halloween decorations on their lawns. It’s a battle between old school decorations and heavy metal gory ones. This time it’s all about decorating that gets out of hand real quickly. It’s funny and a bit gory and offers a little change. We also see the little witch from ‘Trick’.


Friday the 31st ★★★★★

(Directed by Mike Mendez & written by Dave Parker, Mike Mendez)

How weird do you want your little tale? This one is an ode to Friday the 13th (1980) and we watch how a Jason Voorhees figure chases a girl dressed as Dorothy through the foggy woods. Until a UFO suddenly appears with a teeny-tiny alien who says in a really cute way: “twick or tweat.” It’s hilarious! And then he possesses Dorothy who then chases the serial killer. It’s over the top campy fun that reminds of Evil Dead II (1987)


The Ransom of Rusty Rex ★★★★☆

(Directed & written by Ryan Schifrin)

Great fun tale that is well-acted by Sam Witwer and Jose Pablo Cantillo with a twist that might be predictable but still is a lot of fun. Originally executed with glee and dark humor. When they kidnap a child from a rich guy, they get more than they have bargained for. Very fun, deadpan and slapstick humor.


Bad Seed ★★★★☆

(Directed & written by Neil Marshall)

It’s finally time for the pumpkin to shine. We can’t have Halloween tales while leaving out a pumpkin. And the pumpkin is out for revenge. All that carving isn’t nice you know. Detective McNally has to solve a case of a murder. But this case isn’t the only thing in this segment. Through her eyes we get to see what mayhem has been brought to the town and connects the tales even more with each other. There’s also a little nod to Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982), with a pumpkin path called Clover Corp. And the music theme reminds very much of Halloween (1978)


Why you should watch it

Tales of Halloween brings that vibe of the spooky season to your screen in many different forms and is a fun and gory ode and embodiment of Halloween. With all the fun nods, to old horror films, Halloween traditions and the horror genre itself, this film has something to offer for everyone who loves horror or even when you only do during the spooky season. Either way, this film has some very different stories. Some are better than others. But overall and how they are all connected and crossover into other stories is just great fun. 


My favorite part

I loved Grim Grinning Ghost and Friday the 31st, those two stories were my absolute favorites, for these sub genres, the ghost stories and the campy comedy horror are big favorites of mine. They were excellently executed and a lot of fun. But I also liked,Ding Dong, This Means War,The Ransom of Rusty Rex and Bad Seed for their originality, the twists and how they connected more stories to make this film a lager whole than just stand-alone stories. 


Ratings

Rating: ★★★★☆

Fun factor: ★★★★☆

Gore factor:  ★★★★☆

Scare factor: ★★☆☆☆

Popcorn factor: ★★★★★

Originality factor: ★★★★☆

Entertainment factor: ★★★★★


Cast and crew

Duration: 92 minutes. Tales of Halloween is produced by: Axelle Carolyn, Mike Mendez. Production company: Epic Pictures Group. Distributed by: Epic Pictures Group.


Check the trailer below


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