What the heck, it's October so time for a few good scares.
In this case, Trick R Treat actually delivers a few, along with some humor. Following the template of the George Romero-Stephen King fright fest Creepshow, Trick has four interconnected stories that plays through its brief but tight 82 minute run time. The first finds a principal (Dylan Baker) celebrating Halloween in his own way; the second one finds a group of kids reliving an urban legend concerning a bus accident; running through both segments and culminating in the third finds Anna Paquin (decked out as Little Red Riding Hood) trying to find that special someone and finally an old curmudgeon (Brian Cox) gets the trick or treater from Hell.
Directed with tongue in cheek by Michael Dougherty (who co-wrote X-Men 2 and Superman Returns) the film is definitely a step up from such recent junk like the Friday the 13th and Sorority Row remakes and Rob Zombie's Halloween II. In fact (rant coming in!) my only complaint is with the shabby treatment its distributor Warner Bros has given the film. Reportedly setting on the shelf for 2 years (I first saw a trailer for it on the 300 DVD) the studio is only now releasing it direct to DVD and Blu-Ray despite the fact the film has gathered some good notices (and the presence of Paquin, currently hot with HBO's sexy vampire show True Blood). To me it's another sad sign of how far the horror genre has fallen when good horror films like this (or Splinter or Let the Right One In) gets either scant release or DVD while crap like the pointless Saw sequels or the recent Orphan get wide multi theater release.
Beyond that give Trick R Treat a try. And be nice to that trick or treater next time.