HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Vast of Night, The
Furies, The
Days of the Bagnold Summer
Black Power Mix Tape 1967-1975, The
Apartment 1BR
1776
Parasite
Looking On the Bright Side
Take Me Somewhere Nice
Simon
Birds of Prey: And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn
Gentlemen Broncos
To the Stars
Lady Godiva Rides Again
Angelfish
Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ
Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, A
This is a Hijack
Loved One, The
Jumanji: The Next Level
Krabi 2562
Call of the Wild, The
Diary of a Country Priest
Sea Fever
Throw Down
Grudge, The
Green Man, The
Specialists, The
Convoy
Romantic Comedy
Going Ape!
Rabid
Infinite Football
Little Women
Camino Skies
Ema
Another Shore
Cry Havoc
Legend of the Stardust Brothers, The
Mystery Team
   
 
Newest Articles
Who Watched The Watchmen?
The Golden Age of Colonic Irrigation: Monty Python Series 4 on Blu-ray
Lady of Pleasure: Lola Montes on Blu-ray
Take You to the Gay Bar: Funeral Parade of Roses on Blu-ray
Hit for Ms: Mark Cousins' Women Make Film on Blu-ray
Look Sinister: The 1000 Eyes of Dr. Mabuse on Blu-ray
Star Wars Triple Threat: The Tricky Third Prequel and Sequel
I Can See for Miles: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes on Blu-ray
Too Much Pressure: The Family Way on Blu-ray
The Alan Key: Alan Klein and What a Crazy World on Blu-ray
A Japanese Ghost Story: Kwaidan on Blu-ray
The Zu Gang: Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain on Blu-ray
Reality TV: The Year of the Sex Olympics on DVD
The Young and the Damned: They Live By Night on Blu-ray
Mind How You Go: The Best of COI on Blu-ray
Der Kommissar's in Town: Babylon Berlin Series 3 on DVD
The End of Civilisation as We Know It: The 50th Anniversary
The Whalebone Box: The Andrew Kotting Interview
Being Human: The Elephant Man on 4K UHD Blu-ray
It's! Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 3 on Blu-ray
Put the Boot In: Villain on Blu-ray
The Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 2: Vic Pratt Interview
All the Lonely People: Sunday Bloody Sunday on Blu-ray
Desperate Characters: Beat the Devil on Blu-ray
Chansons d'Amour: Alfie Darling on Blu-ray
   
 
  Holidays Sinister Celebrations
Year: 2016
Director: Kevin Smith, Gary Shore, Scott Stewart, etc
Stars: Lorenza Izzo, Seth Green, Harley Quinn Smith, Mark Steger, Ruth Bradley, Jocelin Donahue, Ava Acres, Aleksa Palladino, Michael Gross, Clare Grant, Andrew Bowen, Harley Morenstein, Madeleine Coghlan, Scott Stewart, Ashley Greene, Jennifer Lafleur
Genre: HorrorBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Here is a selection of short tales of horror with the theme of the holidays, taking place on a certain day commemorated each year. Valentine's Day tells the story of unrequited love, St Patrick's Day sees a dream unfortunately come true, Easter celebrates the Resurrection, Mother's Day concerns the state of pregnancy, Father's Day an absent parent, Halloween the modern equivalent of a witches' coven, Christmas the must-have present of the season, and New Year's Eve the need to be with someone at midnight. All these sections have a twist in the tale, twisted being the operative word, and presumably are suitable for watching all the year round, given they will always be close to at least one holiday...

Yet again there was another horror movie made up of an anthology delivered by a collection of writers and directors that happened along in the twenty-tens, as this format was fast becoming the most fashionable style in the genre for those wishing to make a mark. It was simple: just deliver a punchy plot with a memorable ending and wait for the audience to seek out your actual features, which with any luck would gain you a following, assuming you did not have one already which was the case with one of the talents here, Kevin Smith, who was turning quite the indie horror auteur, not that he had left his sense of humour behind in the process. His section would have been the hook to get the viewer to watch the others.

It certainly wouldn't have been the name Gary Shore, whose Dracula Untold was one of the most underwhelming chillers of its day - but what was this? His St Patrick's Day part was one of the most inventive here, detailing how a schoolteacher (Ruth Bradley of TV sci-fi Primeval, among others) who yearned to have a child of her own landed up cursed by a little pagan girl who ensures she falls pregnant with one of the snakes that has supposed to have been among those banished from Ireland by St Patrick all those centuries ago. It was a cheeky, imaginatively presented short that you would like to see Shore applying to his features in future, and actually raised more laughs than Smith's supposedly comic segment.

That had the owner of a sex webcam site suffer a taste of his own medicine as part of Smith's rather medieval view that criminals and victimisers didn't need help, they needed the most extreme punishment possible, which appeared to have clouded his judgement (why didn't he just cut the flex?), maybe in the rush to make his darling daughter Harley Quinn Smith a movie star. But those misgivings aside, there was no one story here that was a dud, it's just that some were more artistically successful than others, and with the variety on show there was always going to be disagreement on what was the best or, if not worst, then least effective. For some, Anthony Scott Burns' muted weirdness Father's Day was not going to hit the mark, and neither was Sarah Adina Smith's Mother's Day.

Meanwhile for others, the maternal unease of that latter would be quite satisfying, even if it was retelling Rosemary's Baby in record time with a pagan cult twist, only ramping up the dreamlike qualities. Elsewhere, Valentine's Day from Kevin Kolsch and Dennis Widmyer saw a bully get her comeuppance from a newly empowered victim thanks to an act of misplaced kindness: the second you saw the Carrie-esque set up, you knew it was going to end with the worm turning. Easter was divertingly blasphemous with a Christ Bunny, Christmas was taken care of with a gag about virtual reality that wouldn't look out of place in the pages of 2000 A.D., especially with that darkly humorous punchline, and to finish on we had confirmation that New Year's Eve really is the most miserable night of the year if you do not feel like being forced to have fun. This saw Eli Roth's better half Lorenza Izzo on a blind date with a loser, the reason for which becomes apparent in a goofy bit of splatstick from Adam Egypt Mortimer, not a bad way to end, certainly memorable and with nothing outstaying its welcome here, a decent enough portmanteau enjoying a better unifying thread running through it than some of its peers.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1179 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Kevin Smith  (1970 - )

American writer-director, by turns self-indulgent and hilarious. His first film Clerks brought him cult success, but he followed it with the big studio flop Mallrats. Chasing Amy was a return to form, and Dogma courted religious controversy. Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back was a tribute to the double act who appeared in every one of his films up until then (Silent Bob was played by Smith himself). Jersey Girl was a conventional romantic comedy that disappointed most of his fans.

Smith is also a writer of comic books, both established characters (Daredevil, Green Arrow) and his own creations. An attempt to turn Clerks into a cartoon series was a failure - but it was damn funny all the same. Fans of the characters could console themselves with the sequel Clerks II. He then offered sex comedy Zack and Miri Make a Porno to mixed reviews, and Cop Out to downright terrible ones which led him to much public complaining. Self-proclaimed horror movie Red State, however, won him some of the best reactions of his career, though audiences were fewer in number.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
  Hannah Prosser
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
  Butch Elliot
  Rachel Franke
Paul Smith
   

 

Last Updated: