November 21, 2013

All Hallows' Eve (2013)
I think the problem that I have with most of today's B-grade Horror cheapo's is that they look really cheap. I know that sounds redundant sounding, but it's not.

In the 80's, Horror fans were subjected to a crazy amount of cheap, shitty, generic B-grade Slasher flicks. That's a whole discussion for another day, but my point here is that as cheap and shitty as they were back then, B-movies were shot on film, so they always had that filmic "feel" to them.

Today's B-movie, especially those of the Horror variety, tend to be shot digitally, which makes them "feel" like my next door neighbor made them with his cellphone camera.

I get why digital is the way to go; it's way cheaper, it's easier and allows more freedom, saves a ton of time and effort... Using digital cameras to film, digital editing, and digital distribution means that filmmakers don't have to go to film school anymore to make a film.

In many ways that can be good. In many, many other ways, that can be bad, because pretty much anyone can make a "movie" these days on the cheap and easy.

I guess that what I'm saying it that while watching All Hallows' Eve, I couldn't help but feel that it would have sucked me in more had it been completely shot on film. I could be way off base with that statement, but I'm allowed to feel my feelings!

All Hallows' Eve is an anthology flick that involves a babysitter and her young charges being terrorized by an old VHS tape. And a clown. Both are connected.

The Wrap- You see, someone slipped an old videotape into one of the kid's bags while they were out trick or treating, and of course the kid wants to watch it, despite the babysitter's concerns that it will most likely contain something creepy and totally inappropriate for younger viewers. Being the worst babysitter ever, she lets the kids watch the tape after one of them gives her the old "bitch, I do what I want!" attitude.

I personally would have knocked the kid across the room with that VHS tape, but that's just me, and it's probably why I don't babysit. I can't be too mad at her though, because she kinda looks like Pam from The Office... which allows her a lot of leeway with me.

Marrying Jim doesn't seem like such a hot idea now, does it Pam!
The first "Story" on the tape is The 9th Circle (which is a short film that was originally available on YouTube.) A cute young girl is waiting in a train station, when a creepy clown shows up. He stares at her, smiles at her, honks a horn, and gives her a flower... which has a bug in it! Then he drugs her, chains her up in the basement (of the train station, because they have those), and she gets raped by a bunch of creepy monsters.

I like that mask.
The next story that Pam Beesly watches (alone this time, as she has sent the kids to bed), is about a cute chick who is all alone in her new house, being terrorized by Aliens. It has no clown, and has nothing to do with the rest of the movie, mainly because ti was filmed to flesh the whole thing out.

The last story is Terrifier (another short originally available on YouTube.) A cute girl is stops for gas, and is terrorized by our clown. This clown apparently doesn't like cute girls at all, because all he does is terrorized/dismember/kill them!

I know, right!
Finally, back at the wraparound, we have Pam Beesly being sucked into the clown's world. She's cute and alone (following the established pattern), the kids are in bed, and having watched the entire VHS tape by herself, has apparently drawn the attention of  the clown... oh, whatever.

Maybe next time, don't be a moron. Cutie.
The first thing I thought as I began to watch this movie was "hey, that chick looks like Pam from The Office, mmm!" She was the absolute highlight of this movie.

As anthology flicks go, this one isn't too bad in some aspects; it feels old school (including the score), has a ton of blood and gore in it, and despite its technical woes, All Hallows' Eve manages to deliver some pretty creepy moments, even if they seem to be fleeting.

The aforementioned Katie Maguire, who plays the babysitter, did a pretty good job here, and was also not hard to look at. I'm not mad at Kayla Lian, Marie Maser or Catherine A. Callahan either; all are cute, and all did pretty decent jobs with what they were given to work with here.

You suck as a babysitter, but you're hot, so... call me?
This movie is basically two YouTube shorts put together with a new, unrelated story, which feels completely out of place, and a wrap that "ties it all together." It truly felt like a bunch of things that had been tied together too. Loosely.

As mentioned above, All Hallows' Eve feels rather hollow in its cheapness. It's not all AHE's fault though; the fact that every "smaller budget" Horror flick that comes down the pipe lately feels hollow and cheap in the same way, doesn't help things at all. Watching movies like this over and over again tends to wear on us, and thus, All Hallows' Eve didn't excite us all that much.

The movie also never truly delivers on the scare front. It shows some promise in that department, but most of that kinda fizzles out pretty quickly, and the movie ended up feeling more campy to us than it did terrifying. 

The evil clown and his constant smiling was distracting at times, to the point of detriment for us. The whole "evil people acting wacky" thing has never been very enjoyable for us, and this movie is full of that kind of thing. Had the clown just been creepy and menacing, and left the cutesy shit out of it, we probably would have found him creepy.

All Hallows' Eve also feels rushed in places, mainly because it was.
For Christ's sake, stop smiling!
All Hallows' Eve isn't horrible, but it's not very good either. It certainly wasn't as good as it could have been had Damian Leone gone more for atmosphere than he did wit and flat-out gore. Younger Horror fans will most likely find this one creepy as hell, but more discerning Horror connoisseurs (if that's even what we are) will most likely find All Hallows' Eve more goofy than it is terrifying.


Katie Maguire and Marie Maser are in this.

1 comment :

  1. Man, was I disappointed when I saw this film... Maybe I psyched myself up a bit too much for it when I knew it was coming, because I thought Terrorizer, BY ITSELF, was a great peice and thought that had Leone been given the funds for a feature length film, the skies the limit... that is of course IF this had been a feature length film... had I known that it was gonna be the same two shorts he did with a f'n STUPID alien short thrown in the middle, I wouldve passed... I believed (at one time) that Damien Leone was one of a short list of potential unknown directors to grab a hold of the horror world and take it to places I think arent being going to much anymore. Im 36 and obviously a fan of the 70's and 80's horror genre, I typically am NOT a fan of scary clown films, and yet he sold me with Terrorizer as a stand alone short... I was NOT impressed with this film and I think you were generous giving this film a D+... and this coming from a guy that a couple months ago was on Leone's bandwagon... The only thing "I" like about this film is it gives me a chance to own Terrorizer on BluRay, thats not saying much. (I love how you thought the lead looked like Jenna Fischer from The Office, THIS is an example of why Im a fan of your site)