Written by: Carroll Jenkins on May 14th, 2013
Theatrical Release Date: USA, 2011
Directors: Pete Jacelone, Alex Pucci, Draven Gonzalez
Cast: Jaclyn Marfuggi, Jim Hazelton, John Link, Edward X. Young
DVD Released: July 16th, 2013
Approximate running time: 78 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.78.1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo English
DVD Release: Independent Entertainment / Pop Cinema
Region Coding: Region 0 NTSC
Retail Price: $19.99
Anthology of modern independent horror shorts.
The framework tale is “The Happy Couple” and is by far the weakest, crudest, and most disposable of the four featurettes. It’s partially saved by being chopped to pieces to introduce the other episodes, and it certainly makes them look like masterworks by comparison.
“The One” is an interesting modern gothic vampire hunter tale with very strong sexual motifs and the vamp is quite attractive. Looped dialog sometimes gives it the appearance of an Italian muscleman epic, but that’s not really a bad thing.
Directed by Pete Jacelone, “Deep Into the Rabbit Hole” is an impressive coming-of-age tale rather reminiscent of ‘Stand By Me’. It packs a lot of character development in a very short time, partly through the use of stereotypical characters, but mostly by virtue of a talented juvenile cast. The script is thoughtful, the special effects are good and well edited, and the bully isn’t a coward but actually proves to have a lot of guts.
“Zombies! Zombies! Everywhere!” is another Pete Jacelone offering in the form of a tongue-in-cheek documentary interview with the local zombie slayer. He reminisces about how he began his career and we follow him as he goes about his daily duties. This one may borrow a bit from ‘Cemetery Man’, but that’s not a bad thing either. The zombie effects are top notch and there are some truly striking images that make this another standout.
Being an anthology, the quality of the various segments vary by design rather than presentation. “The Happy Couple” has extreme chopped off close-ups like an 80’s porno; “The One” features dim colored lighting and distortion effects to mask the meager sets; and both Jacelone features are crystal clear when they want to be. The big extras here, however, are the three uncut featurettes (sans Happy Couple) which seem to be extended only by the title sequences.
Overall this is a well balanced Amicus type horror anthology by way of EC Comics. Recommended viewing as a feature one time: after that I’d go straight to the extras and enjoy the individual presentations of the three good ones.