Those of you who regularly frequent B-is For Best will remember that as a matter of tradition myself and the B-Movie Crusader (My son) Always watch The Treasure Chest Of Horrors films together. There’s just something about these cheap, off kilter shit fests that makes them endearing and fun. They remind me of the cheesy horror films my Dad and I used to watch on late night television, so it’s a way of passing down a beloved tradition. Needless to say we were pretty excited to see that a third installment was included in our box from Wild Eye (this time entitled Dysmorphia rather then keeping with the previous two) Luckily I watched this one myself beforehand.
Let’s start by discussing the wraparound segment for this anthology:
The segment focuses on a brother and sister who locate their dead uncle’s old VHS collection. Bored and curious they ask their Aunt if they can watch them and are told that it’s fine but they should avoid a certain tape. They sit down and watch unaware that they are getting closer and closer to said tape (Nice of their Aunt not to tell them which one it is right?) This portion is my first problem with the film. The two characters could not have been more obnoxious, the dialog (when not rendered virtually inaudible by bad sound equipment) was painful and pointless, and since the key element of which VHS should not be watched was withheld, there was absolutely no point to the warning being given at all! What could have been a simple yet effective wraparound segment instead comes across as an ultra sad, forced rush job that is so close in build up and pay off to Johnny Dickie’s Slaughter Tales that is borders on plagiarism…Thankfully we’re not completely bombarded with these segments and we do get some extremely fun hilarious little ditties here.
Let’s talk about some of my favorites
Doug Waugh’s Knockers (never thought I’d say that sentence and be so excited) showcases a seemingly unstoppable door to door missionary and the annoyed druggie who’s attempts to rid himself of her are contentiously thwarted to increasingly bizarre and over the top degrees.
This one was the most.. Treasure Chest Of Horrors-esque of the bunch. It’s silly, it’s cheap, but it’s effective. It reminds me of something the polinia brothers would have put out 20 years ago. If this was the only short on this anthology it would be getting two middle fingers chopped off and sanded to the bone.
Another gem here was Shawn Phillip’s I Dare you, which focuses on Shawn and fellow internet personality Brendan Mitchell, who after a dare, decide to lock themselves away in a bathroom for a week with very little food. What happens when two robust reviewers deny themselves the food the love so much..what do you think?
Silly over the top and stupid as fuck (I say that I assure you) this one would have been unwatchable if not for Shawn’s signature overacting and hyper friendly face. Shawn has that grown up 6 year old quality that makes him instantly likable onscreen no matter what he does and it works to a T with this insane little piece.
The last one that sticks out to me (in a good way) was Tarra Emerson’s Fatal Fantasy. This was tells the story of what has to be one of the stupidest wives on the planet. She takes what her husband says completely literally which leads to some ..sticky situations.
I loved this short, it pretty much came across as a psychotic Amelia Bedelia story. Out of the bunch this was the only one I could picture as a feature length film. A big part of me hopes that idea will be considered someday.
Now that we’ve talked about the good, let’s talk about the two that almost destroyed this thing for me: Shane Ryan’s So We Killed Our Parents, and The Cousin Bros’ Sane:The Boredom Killings The first is a college film-esque little piece shot almost frame by frame and with distorted audio about a brother and sister who, after years of sexual abuse and neglect decide to kill their parents and then fuck each other. The second is a found footage style short focusing on two teens who out of boredom begin raping and murdering other teens.
The issue I have with these is the same. Both take on serious issues with complete disregard and both are pointless. There’s no resolve, there’s no moral, they’re just fuck’in mean spirited in general. What makes it worse is these things are sandwiched between such light hearted and fun fair. They stick out like a sore thumb and I’m going to go out a limb here and guess they were likely tossed in last minute to flesh ths whole affair out. Honestly I would have preferred a shorter film.
Overall I give this film one middle finger up. Despite it’s issues there is alot of fun to be had with this one and when all is said and done I still think it’s worth the couple bucks it will cost you to snag a copy.