Holiday horror anthologies with “Tales” in the title

This foursome of flicks covers both Christmas and Halloween, and each earns a spot on the holiday horror page. Let’s take a look at what you can expect.

ALTER Collection: Holiday Horror (2021)

This is simply a 52-minute collection of five tales that take place during the Christmas season. My absolute favorite is the first episode.

Episode 1

A couple is preparing for the holidays when an old friends drops by and leaves them a package that proves to have something freaky inside. Eek!

Episode 2

A sadistic satire in which the government puts homeless people to work by morphing them into Santa Claus just for the holidays then setting them out onto the street again.

Episode 3

A husband presents Christmas Eve as a perfect night for his family when actually it’s going to end in tragedy. This one has a clever plot.

Episode 4

When a woman and a man go home for some sex following a blind date, it turns into a Merry Axe-mas when it turns out it’s a house of horrors. This is a goodie with a fun twist.

Episode 5

This odd short is like the final scene of a killer Santa slasher, when the survivors have to make sure the killer is really dead. I think it’s supposed to be making a statement on why a female has to be the final survivor.


The wraparound steals the show in this anthology and is the only part that takes place on Halloween. Three kids trick or treat at the house of an alleged witch, and she invites them in for some scary stories…

1st story – at a garage sale, a woman tells girls about a “petrified man” that worked for the circus. A tame zinger ending doesn’t save this bland tale.

2nd story – a filmmaker comes for a job at a cemetery. If I’m understanding this right, it seems some footage he edits is a portal to death and brings forth a grim reaper.

3rd story – a couple steals a crystal ball from a male fortune teller who seems to then haunt their house. This one is creepy, but it has a kind of confusing twist and way too many loud orchestral stabs to force jump scares.

4th story – a guy who killed his wife and kids now says he hears God and was being tested, which he learns isn’t quite accurate after giving a big sermon. This “story” just goes nowhere.

5th story – a woman hooks up with an artist, but she has ulterior motives. This one has a fiendish, Tales from the Crypt feel to it.

6th story – a holiday crossover? This Halloween wraparound anthology ends with a Christmas horror story about Krampus fighting an elf. Sadly, it’s just an array of still shots set to an audio track. Bummer.

The wraparound is the highlight because the witch totally rox.


This black and white Spanish film only flirts with Halloween during the wraparound, which happens to be the most entertaining part.

A cemetery caretaker/gravedigger is up to all kinds of macabre tricks on Halloween night.

Sadly we don’t just to get to watch him and his ghoulish existence.

Instead he tells four stories…

  • a bride becomes trapped with the best man right before her wedding…and he’ll do anything to make sure she ends up with him till death do them part. This one is just endless dialogue with very little payoff.

  • a lesbian couple goes on a date to a carnival, and there’s a killer in the tunnel of terror. I’m making it sound better than it is.

  • a man brings a blind woman to a cabin in the woods claiming they are going to be with other friends. But pretty soon she suspects he’s taking advantage of her blindness to deceive her. Not much suspense here, but the concept is okay.

  • a man’s wife becomes a vampire during a pandemic and he has to keep her locked away. Like all the stories in this anthology, it’s a generally interesting and moody tale that simply lacks any horror oomph.


This feels like a very home-brewed indie, and once again, only the wraparound takes place on Halloween. And for the most part, the stories aren’t horror stories, just dark tales.

Friends gather to tell stories at a Halloween party in what looks like the living room of someone who worked on the movie.

1st story – this is seriously a tale about an ammosexual being hunted by a sniper in the woods. The best part is the twist ending.

2nd story – a girl seeks revenge when she discovers her boyfriend is cheating on her. Again, not much horror, but an old school anthology tale twist.

3rd story – while it’s the only genuine horror story and focuses on vampires, it’s not a very compelling tale.

The wraparound tries to give us another shocker twist. I wasn’t shocked.



About Daniel

I am the author of the horror anthologies CLOSET MONSTERS: ZOMBIED OUT AND TALES OF GOTHROTICA and HORNY DEVILS, and the horror novels COMBUSTION and NO PLACE FOR LITTLE ONES. I am also the founder of BOYS, BEARS & SCARES, a facebook page for gay male horror fans! Check it out and like it at
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