26 September 2016

Holidays 2016 - REVIEW

I have never been a fan of anthologies. I always feel like I spend an hour and a half watching and end up hating the majority of them. However, I put it out on Twitter and asked for suggestions for films to review and thanks to @evildeadron this is what I was given. So, I grabbed WAY too many snacks, climbed in bed and started watching. Imagine my glee (not really) when I realized there were eight short films to get through. This is what I do to myself lately, I prejudge every movie based on plot and usually end up convincing myself that it's not worth watching and reviewing instead of just getting it done. Hang on to your shorts, this will be a pretty long review... eight freaking films....

Valentine's Day (written and directed by Kevin Kölsch and Dennis Widmyer) starring Madeleine Coghlan, Savannah Kennick and Rick Peters.

A teenager with a crush on her gym coach is bullied by the rest of her classmates, but an innocent Valentine's Day gesture leads to horrific results.

This one was one of my favorites. The acting was good and the film was very well done. It touches a bit on quite a controversial subject these days, school bullies and succeeded in making me hate Kennewick's character Heidi. Which is hard to do in just the few minutes they have to tell the story.

St. Patrick's Day (written and directed by Gary Shore) starring Ruth Bradley, Peter Campion and Isolt McCaffrey.

A young teacher learns the frightening truth about the legendary snakes of St. Patrick when a student makes her deepest wish come true, with a sick twist.

I had a hard time getting through this one. Once they introduced the whole snake thing, I zoned out because it was just too over the top for my taste. The dialogue was comical and there just wasn't enough time to really tell a story so by the end I was wondering what in the hell I just watched. The only positive thing about this segment was Isolt McCaffrey; she played her little creepy part to a tee. There is something so unsettling about a kid that just sits and grins at you.

Easter (written and directed by Nicholas McCarthy) starring Ava Acres, Petra Wright and Mark Steger.

A young girl who wakes up and sees the Easter Bunny arrive is in for a shock.

This is another one that successfully told a complete story in just a short amount of time. While it wasn't one of my favorites, it was still entertaining. The makeup effects for the bunny were very well done and I'd be curious to find out if he was supposed to come off as creepy or pervy because at certain points, they drew a pretty fine line as far as intent is concerned. Regardless, interesting story and different twist on the myth of the Easter Bunny.

 Mother's Day (written and directed by Sarah Adina Smith) starring Sophie Traub, Aleksa Palladino, Sheila Vand, Jennifer Lafleur and Sonja Kinski.

A woman who can't stop getting pregnant finds herself involved with a coven of barren witches after attending a strange ritual.

I am not a fan of this one at all. It suffers from the same problem that many short films do, half a story. We're given so few details about this "coven" of witches that while watching, I never got the feeling that that's what it was. Yes, there was some weird shit going on but I never got a witchy vibe. Unless I missed something, which is quite possible. Please feel free to let me know if I did.

Father's Day (written and directed by Anthony Scott Burns) starring Jocelin Donahue, Michael Gross and Jana Karan.

A teacher receives a mysterious cassette tape from her long-estranged father that leads to a darker mystery. The answer for why he disappeared may not be what she expected.

After watching, I'm still not sure why he disappeared. Again, another incomplete story that leaves you with more questions than answers.

Halloween (written and directed by Kevin Smith) starring Ashley Greene, Olivia Roush, Harley Quinn Smith, Harley Morenstein and Shelby Kemper.

A man running an internet sex cam business finds himself in dire straits when he crosses his employees on Halloween.

I have never been a fan of Kevin Smith... I know, I know, most think he's some kind of God but I'm not one of those. BUT, give me some credit here, I watched and gave it a chance but I still didn't like it. Other than one of the characters being in costume and a mention or two of it, I didn't see how it really related to Halloween but whatev. The acting was good and it was well shot but that's about the only good things I can say about it.

Christmas (written and directed by Scott Stewart) starring Seth Green, Clare Grant, Kalos Cluff, John C. Johnson, Shawn Parsons, Michael Sun Lee, Wes Robertson, Karina Noelle, Scott Stewart and Richard DiLorenzo.

A man goes to terrible lengths to get a virtual reality device for his son for Christmas, but finds himself haunted by it.

This story, I quite enjoyed. It was kind of like an extreme horror version of Jingle all the Way. Admittedly it wasn't actually horror, it was more of a thriller but at least it was a full and complete story that was well shot and well acted.

New Year's Eve (written by Kevin Kölsch and Dennis Widmyer; directed by Adam Egypt Mortimer) starring Lorenza Izzo, Andrew Bowen and Megan Duffy

A disturbed young man discovers that his New Year's date may be just as twisted.

Another one of my favorites with a nice twist at the end. It was a refreshing change from the usual serial killer plots. Again, the film was well done and well acted.

Overall, I was pleased with this anthology and would recommend that any horror fan give it a go. If you've already seen it, feel free to let me know what your favorite segment was!

Plot source: Wikipedia.org

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