22 Oct 2013

[HORROR OF HALLOWEEN] 'Trick 'r Treat' Review

Director: Michael Dougherty
Writer: Michael Dougherty
Stars: Anna Paquin, Brian Cox, Dylan Baker, Leslie Bibb
Running Time: 82 mins
Sub-Genre: Anthology, Twisted, Black Comedy, Slasher, Festive
Release: October 2007

Five interwoven stories that occur on the same block, on the same night. A couple finds what happens when they blow a jack o' lantern out before midnight, a high school principal has a secret life as a serial killer, a college virgin might have met the right guy for her, a group of mean teens play a prank that they take too far, and a hermit is visited by a special trick or treater.

John Carpenter's Halloween has stood for a long time as a landmark around the Halloween holidays for the obvious reasons, and as much as we all love Halloween, there were never really any other holiday-appropriate horrors that stood on its own two legs as a fantastic horror and a tasty Halloween treat, and let's face it, The Halloween Franchise year after year can be a little 'bleugh' considering the lack of effort but into most of the sequels. Never fear people, there is still hope, and the unbelievable underdog that is Trick 'r Treat is here to be watched on this glorious holiday, and to be perfectly honest, you will not find a better film to watch on the 31st of October.

Trick 'r Treat is a deliciously evil tale that bends the genre into shapes it no longer thought it could make, crammed with juicy Halloween spirit, this little gem presents all that is magical and mystical about the holiday of the dead whilst stuffing in all that's good about the horror genre; and if that means ditching a masked man with a knife and employing old fashioned horror tales then so be it, as Trick 'r Treat becomes exactly that, a twisted trick that goes down an absolute treat.

Hidden in the shadows of the film industry yet open and vibrant within the horror genre, Trick 'r Treat hasn't got the media attention it well and truly deserved, and with it going straight-to-dvd who could blame that for happening? Past experience with straight-to-dvd horror's have not been very good, but this strikes hope, the film is strong that it baffles me why this never hit the big screen; it may be playing at selected theaters now giving living proof that it's never too late. It pains me that it hasn't got the recognition it deserves, but it could be horror fans little secret.

Fantastic on nearly every level, the film ties in some successful characters and scares, topped off with a vibrantly twisted narrative creating the perfect basket of the best of the Halloween treats; what's not to love. It fleshes out the characters successfully in the short screen time each had, so there are rare moments were or opinion on a character dying is invalid. Along with some striking character development lies the villains of the film, the best taking the shape of the little pumpkin child that is Sam who represents all that is special about Halloween, until you break a rule of tradition in which he starts to slice and dice with a broken little orange pop; endearing. Trick 'r Treat isn't exactly "scary", but that's to be expected, it focuses more on delivering the brilliantly structured narrative, thankfully the story is strung along with magnitude that it overpowers that fact that the film is short on scares; in saying that, a few haunting moments save it from becoming ineffective.

VERDICT: Trick 'r Treat is a superb Festive treat that should get you in the spirit of Halloween like no other; Fun, Vibrant and magnificently twisted, Prepare for one of the best festive horror's since John Carpenter's Halloween, and one of the best hidden gems in horror history. 


  1. Good review Jack. Each segment is messed up in its own little way, and that's what I liked the most about it. However, they don't all work perfectly together.

    1. Thanks! Yeah I can agree with you there, but I love what the film has to bring to the table, and despite its dated tales it feels so new and refreshing.



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