The headline says it all, so let’s get this over with.
WOMEN OF HORROR: MOTHER’S DAY TERROR TALES (2018)
I guess this short anthology is celebrating women directors in horror, hence the title. Mother’s Day is mentioned by a goth chick sitting next to her dead mom while hosting the film, but these aren’t shorts centered around the holiday.
Also, many are about as good in quality as short films you might see posted online by aspiring director. At least half have that “blink and you won’t understand the attempted clever twist” effect, and most of them just go for a quick horror zinger rather than telling a story. But you’ve got to do what you can with just a 64-minute running time. Here’s the breakdown:
1st tale – A boy in his bedroom is terrorized by someone at the door asking to be let in.
2nd tale – This is a quick, fun twist on the idea of being afraid of the dark as a man tries to change a light bulb.
3rd tale – Cliché scary clown shtick in a super brief short.
4th tale – This is quick horror fun that’s like “The Tell-Tale Heart”…with a tongue.
5th tale – This has a clever little twist as a man talks lovingly to another man bound to a chair.
6th tale – A young man struggling to land a job as a puppeteer gets an offer he can’t refuse. Much of this story focuses on the puppets.
7th tale – Girls have a séance on Halloween, complete with lesbians and a demon scare.
8th story – A guy is all paranoid on Christmas in a short that attempts to make Jack Frost the next Krampus.
9th story – Two girls find a hole in the floor under their bed. Another cheap scare short you might see on YouTube.
10th story – A cool twist on a tale of a woman who constantly sees a man out of the corner of her eye.
TERROR! DEATH!! REVENGE!!! (2018)
At first I found inserting trailers for old black and white horror flicks between tales in this anthology annoying, but they actually work with the overall midnight movie tone. It’s another short, 65-minute anthology with only three tales, and they’re all better than the usual below average indie anthology quality.
1st tale – A couple calls in a specialist to help their young son, who is terrified of their basement.
An extremely unorthodox approach to curing him unleashes the truth of what he’s really scared of.
The dad is really cute, the creep is really cheesy CGI, but it’s a fun one overall.
There’s blood everywhere, and I’m like, “Damn that daddy’s ass is fine.”
2nd tale – While the plot is simple and the twist totally predictable, the gruesome gore scene makes this one stand out.
A young woman is interviewing potential roommates.
A friend calls and says she’s sending someone she knows over to check out the room…
3rd tale – This is my favorite, even if it also is pretty predictable despite being a fresh twist on the backwoods psycho cannibal family plot.
A pair out on a date runs into trouble. A dude in a pickup truck with a “Ted Nugent for president” bumper sticker on it offers them a ride. As well versed as I am on what happens to city folk who accept a ride from a hillbilly, my first thought in this case would be, “How can I dump the bitch before I get in the pickup with this sweaty piece of white trash?”
However, it’s the bitch I would have left stranded on the side of the road who steals the show by the final frame.
And yet I’d still be like, “Okay, I get it. I’m your dinner. But could you eat my ass before you kill me?”
Meanwhile, there’s also some sort of interlude story…about a dude who seems to have a fetish involving a Purdue chicken. No, I don’t understand what it means.
And stay tuned after the credits for a classic Halloween safety PSA. Awesome.