“Mommy? How does he get in the house?”
Story: 8 holiday-themed tales of terror. From Valentine’s Day to NYE, a whole lotta people are gonna get offed. Pass the popcorn!
Scares: Some effective ones, some not so effective. All depends on which story.
Splat factor: See above.
Closing scene “shocker”?: Nup. Each vignette gets wrapped up pretty well. Or well-ish.
Remake, Sequel or OG (Original Ghoul)?: Anthologies are all over the place, but this one’s a stand-alone.
Trick or Treat?: Treat. While not every story is aces in my particular book, each one has it’s own creepiness that plays out nicely. Hey, you’re not supposed to fall in love with everything in an anthology, especially one where there are 8 different directors shooting their own take on horror and the holidays. What’s on offer?
* Valentine’s Day: a high school girl gets picked on, and a gym teacher just tries to be nice. [Straight up EC. Fantastic.]
* St. Pat’s: can’t a teacher get a break? Er, baby? [Odd, and they lost me at a certain bouffant hairdo.]
* Easter: Zombie Jesus! Er, make that zombie rabbit Jesus… [Weird as hell, and just as satisfying. I have no idea how Fundies aren’t crapping themselves over this one.]
* Mother’s Day: a young woman gets pregnant every time she has sex. Every. Time. [Wymyn’s rights on acid. Good ’til the final WTF moment that could have gone many other ways and been a much more interesting tale.]
* Father’s Day: Happy Father’s Day! Your dad is still alive. At least, that cassette tape you just received has him saying he is. [A creepy slow burn of a story, with a dark – but not quite satisfying – little payoff.]
* Halloween: a skeeve gets girls to come to LA to be Cam Girls. Why won’t a dude let the ladies enjoy a slow night by letting ’em go enjoy Halloween? Dammit. [Kevin Smith nails tongue-in-cheek grossout, y’all. Respect.]
* Christmas: that toy everyone wants may not be the best idea; it shows you what you think you’d like. Or what you didn’t want to know. [Seth Green stars! ‘Nuff said. Oh, this EC-esque ending you see coming a mile away. But Seth.]
* NYE: can’t a guy find a girl who’ll like him? After keeping you in his basement for a year, you’d figure a girl’d see the real him. [This bloody tale ends the anthology on a high note. Maybe not for all the characters in this story though.]
Worth a watch, as long as you’re down for the ups-and-downs of anthologies.
Score: 3 out of 5 pumpkins.