Movie Review: TRICK ‘R TREAT (Collector’s Edition) Blu-ray

TRICK ‘R TREAT was written and directed by Michael Dougherty and stars Dylan Baker, Rochelle Aytes, Tahmoh Penikett, Leslie Bibb, Brett Kelly, Lauren Lee Smith, Richard Harmon and Quinn Lord with Anna Paquin and Brian Cox.

Trick ‘r Treat is a creepy, darkly comic celebration of the scariest night of the year that takes the Creepshow and Tales from the Crypt approach to nefarious new depths with four interwoven tales set on Halloween night. A high school principal (Dylan Baker) moonlights as a vicious serial killer; the quest of a young virgin (Anna Paquin) for that special someone takes a gruesome turn; a group of teens carries out a cruel prank with disastrous consequences; and a cantankerous old man (Brian Cox) battles a mischievous trick-or-treating demon.

Trick ‘r Treat takes place on Halloween night and features four segments (and a wraparound) that are all connected and center around Halloween and the rules that have to be followed – or else. Sam is a child-like demon that wears these orange footie pajamas with a burlap sack over his head that allows him to fit right in with all the children going around trick or treating. Sam serves as the silent ringmaster that connects the segments together as he watches on and punishes those who break the rules. There’s an innocence to the pumpkin-headed demon but looks can be deceiving because he enforces the rules of Halloween with extreme prejudice when someone breaks them.

The first segment follows a woman who starts taking down the Halloween decorations too early and Sam doesn’t like it so he punishes her in a gruesome way that turns the young woman into a mutilated piece of Halloween decor. There’s also an unlikable obese kid who eats way too much candy and ends up getting what he deserves by the hands of his school principal who also happens to be a serial killer who’s showing his kid the ropes. The next segment follows a group of kids that plays a nasty trick on an innocent girl that deals with an urban legend that took place years earlier in the small town and they end up getting a haunting dose of karma for doing it when the undead pays them a visit.

There’s another segment that follows a mysterious young woman who’s partying with her sister and their girlfriends. This is sort of a coming-of-age story with a hairy twist because there’s more than meets the eye when it comes to these girls and that school principal finds this out first hand. Lastly, there’s also a old man that hates Halloween so Sam pays him a visit where the old grouch fights for his life as the little demon attacks him. The twist here is that it’s revealed that the old man is connected to the urban legend that took place years earlier and now it’s time for him to pay for his sins.

I remember hearing about Trick ‘r Treat back in 2007 but nothing ever happened because Warner Bros. didn’t really know what to do with a movie like this so it got shelved for a couple of years. The hot thing going in horror at that time was torture porn (Saw, Hostile and Cabin Fever) and this one here was a lone horror anthology so it was kind of a unique case. The movie made its rounds in some festivals and the word started to get out that this was a fun movie that deserved a bigger audience but Warner Bros. still wasn’t open to any kind of theatrical release but the movie did finally arrive on Blu-ray and DVD in 2009.  Since the release of this film Sam has become a fan favorite character and horror icon to the masses.

The packaging comes with a slipcover/0-card. The front features the all-new artwork you see at the top of the page and the back includes movie details, some images and list of special features. The reverse sleeve features some original artwork and movie credits so you have your pick of which side you’d like to use for the front cover. The Blu-ray disc features its own individual artwork. Inserting the disc, the menu screen was simple and easy to navigate. Scream Factory has given the movie a new 2K scan of the original film elements supervised and approved by director Michael Dougherty. The picture and sound quality for this high-definition upgrade were crisp and clear. I didn’t have any issues with the video and audio.

Bottom line is, Trick ‘r Treat was already one of my go-to horror movies every year when Halloween rolls around and now Scream Factory and Michael Dougherty have made this special horror anthology even more special to me. Each segment that serves as a warning is a lot of fun and mixes elements of horror with dark humor just right. The sets look great and the cast did a fantastic job with their characters. Michael Doughtery delivered the perfect Halloween horror anthology that’s also my personal favorite and it just gets better and better as it ages. The movie plays like a dark fairy tale because it’s such an atmospheric watch, and even though it does have a little humor, it doesn’t hold back when it comes to blood and gore. We all have our personal favorites and Trick ‘r Treat happens to be mine. Trick ‘r Treat is now available on this stunning Collector’s Edition Blu-ray and it’s a must have.

Distributor: Scream Factory

Run Time: 82 Minutes

Rated: R

Blu-ray Video: 1080p High-Definition Widescreen (2.35:1)

Blu-ray Audio: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and 2.0

Subtitles: English SDH

Special Features: Good Stuff! The extras include new interviews with Michael Dougherty who goes in depth about Trick ‘r Treat and the road it took. There’s also his short animated film that first introduced Sam, an artwork gallery, a still gallery, a story from the graphic novel, fifteen FEAR.net shorts, some audio commentary, seven deleted scenes, a school bus FX comparison and the theatrical trailer.

  • NEW Tales of Folklore & Fright: Creating Trick ‘r Treat – including interviews with writer/director Michael Dougherty, conceptual artist Breehn Burns, and storyboard artist Simeon Wilkins. (16:05)
  • NEW Tales of Mischief & Mayhem: Filming Trick ‘r Treat – in-depth interview with Michael Dougherty on the making of the film (19:46)
  • NEW Sounds of Shock & Superstition: Scoring Trick ‘r Treat – including interviews with Michael Dougherty and composer Douglas Pipes (11:10)
  • NEW Tales of Dread and Despair: Releasing Trick ‘r Treat – a look at the release and fandom with Michael Dougherty and writer Rob Galluzzo (07:23)
  • Season’s Greetings – NEW 2K scan of the original 16mm elements – a short film by Michael Dougherty with optional commentary by Dougherty (03:54)
  • NEW Storyboard and Conceptual Artwork Gallery (19:13)
  • NEW Behind the Scenes Still Gallery (13:11)
  • NEW Monster Mash – a story from the TRICK ‘R TREAT graphic novel (08:37)
  • NEW FEARnet.com Shorts (09:10)
  • Audio Commentary with director Michael Dougherty
  • Trick ‘R Treat: The Lore and Legends of Halloween featurette (27:26)
  • Deleted and Alternate Scenes with optional commentary by director Michael Dougherty (17:13)
  • School Bus FX Comparison (01:13)
  • Theatrical Trailer (02:27)

 

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