While watching two children on Halloween night, a babysitter finds an old VHS tape in the kids’ trick or treat bag. The tape features three tales of terror, all linked together by a murderous clown. As the night goes on strange things begin to occur in the house. It isn’t long before the babysitter learns the horrifying truth… the maniacal clown is slowly working his way into her reality.
“All Hallows’ eve” is not exactly an easy film and will surely enchant few. It is clearly a low-budget film with a somewhat sinister and absurd atmosphere, mixed with some gore scenes and an atmosphere that reminded me of 80s horror movies. That is the strongest and most positive point why I could actually appreciate this movie. That nostalgic feeling and mood in this “Halloween“–like film. It seemed indeed a rented VHS with a dated movie. Complete with a bad image caused by age and noise on the videotape. You only needed the monotonous music of an old synthesizer and it is complete.
It all starts on a Halloween night. Sarah (Katie Maguire) has to babysit that night and the two teenagers, Timmy and Tia, are back from a round of “Trick or Treat“. Just before they go to sleep, Timmy discovers a VHS tape between his candy. They convince Sarah to look what´s actually on it , assuming that it is probably a scary Halloween movie. Eventually there appear to be three short horror films with “Art the Clown” as a central figure.
“All Hallows’ eve” is a so called anthology film : a collection of different stories. The different stories are actually the downside of this movie. They are not very original and the first two are downright bad. The first story is pretty absurd and confusing. Besides a claustrophobic feeling and the intention to make a kind of demonic torture story out of it, it didn’t make a big resounding impression on me. A content-free and completely insignificant whole. The exhibit of gross pictures didn’t make it any better. And then it seemed as if they cut and chopped some marzipan. Not exactly a successful part of the movie. The clown came here briefly in the picture, but more as a prop (and also the cause). So this was just a warming up.
The second story took a completely different turn, but it was completely ruined by the design of the creature. It looked like the figure portrayed in “The Scream”, but with all kinds of attributes. Total nonsense, no suspense or fear moments. “Art” was not even there in person.
The third story was the highlight. A gross and extravagant final story with Art as a conductor in a bloody tragedy. A collage of bloodstained knives, a hacksaw with remnants of human flesh, and a still life of the girl fully carved with obscene words. Clearly the better story of the trilogy …
Ultimately the story then progresses as expected. The film has similarities with “V / H / S” and “Playback“. The whole movie revolves around Art and I must admit that this is a truly deranged clown with a bloodthirsty, spooky and creepy look. A successful representation of a humorous nightmare, innocent but deadly at the same time. A devil in a box that always plays on his horn, and who makes a transition from the imaginary world to reality. A real collection of curiosities with many incomprehensible creatures, interspersed with some ghoulish images and gory moments. The other characters were not exactly bad. Most looked really just frightened out of their eyes throughout the whole film. Katie Maguire played a persuasive role in which she has to put the two teenagers at ease and overcome her own fears at the same time.
Many will think this is a very bad movie. Others will judge it as a sublime work. I’m right there in the middle. With the first two stories better developed, this wouldn’t have been a clownish display.
Make sure you watch this movie completely, because the sting is in the tail.
My rating 5/10
Links : IMDB