Archive for January, 2011


Trick ‘R Treat

January 9, 2011


So, the straight-to-DVD masterpiece, “Trick ‘R Treat,” is now on Netflix. A cult favorite and universally acclaimed horror film, it’s mind-boggling as to why this movie was pushed out of theatrical release and limited to only a few big-screen viewings at select festivals before a CD launch. Originally, it was planned as a big release in 2008, but for reasons unknown to me right now, they cut back on taking a chance on this one. And what a shame; it offers more than all the other Halloween schlock of the past five years combined. I watched this last year and I still love it.


Trick ‘r Treat is a bit of an “anthology” of stories rolled into an interweaving tale. A principal may or may not be murdering trick or treaters, an innocent young woman is supposedly demonized by a vampire at a party, a cantankerous old man is haunted by a supernatural slasher, and an old and shameful town legend lurks beneath the surface of the rock quarry. It’s incredibly original and the twist endings towards each story are impressively clever. I wish I could elaborate more, but there are so many little tidbits that would spoil the film…so I can’t say more than this. In terms of horror films, this one is probably one of the most well-produced and tightly developed pieces I’ve seen in my entire life. It balances cliche lightly and relies on some new takes on “old favorites,” but for the majority of the ride it all seems so new and refreshing. A thrilling Halloween film brimming with genuine “‘Oh shit, what’s going to happen next?” moments is always a pleasure, and even moreso when the payoff is as fantastic as it is here. There are a few humorous turns, but the movie knows well enough when to restrict the sparse laughs in exchange for some great suspense. Most of the surprises, I didn’t even see coming until the very last second. That’s what a great horror film does: keeps you on the edge of your seat. And this one redeemed the genre after many, many failures and stupid disappointments.

Aside from the usual twists and turns, the acting is pretty solid—featuring cameos by Brian Cox, Anna Paquin, and the very underrated Dylan Baker as a really wormy and villainous type. His character, Stephen Wilkins, might be one of my favorite characters I’ve seen as of late. Yeah, I know, it’s a horror flick and it ain’t Shakespeare—but this writing is well above most of its contemporaries in the business, and I was really entertained without having to lower my IQ or anything like that. You know, like for the recent Saw sequels…ugh.

Anyway, it’s definitely worth watching at least once. I guarantee it’s 100% better than any film like it right now; the top of the crop in its category, and well worth the money.