A man rides his bike through the fringes of town delivering papers a few days after Halloween. The main headline is a story about three trick or treaters that remain missing. At the end of his route he delivers to a seemingly abandoned remote home. The deliverer goes to inspect finding three crooked fresh graves marked by makeshift crosses on the property. Attached to each monument is a scribbled folded note thats the narrative to the three allegoric tales to follow.
The first story follows a young couple that meet up and go shopping to prepare for Halloween night. They visit a costume store pick out masks then head out for a Devil's Night role reversal adventure. The second features cultish religious overtones as two women and a man with Halloween as a backdrop prep their victim for a particularly painful death until one of the three help the victim to attempt an escape leading to significant consequences. The third stories lead characters are street youth hiding their candy stash the day after Halloween. But one does not contribute leading to a vengeful act by the other two who are suffering from an extreme state of hunger.
Director Torin Langen weaves together the three featured tales that were all shot at different times spanning a 4 year period. The newest or 4th story added focus on two police men one older and the other younger that have a side business placing traps in the woods then delivering humans caught in the traps to a client for a fee.
The twist of the feature is the absence of dialogue. The cast demonstrate emotion and feeling through gestures, eye movement and body language. The soundtrack, sound effects and cinematography are all critical in a film that has no dialogue.
Director Langen also does a superior job in the editing room for this production. The three stories were all originally shot as stand alone but due to shooting style, similar pacing , women driving the majority of the story and violence the stories all fit seamlessly together.
The cast of relative unknowns many friends of the director all perform well without a major tool in acting dialogue being available as a device to give voice to their characters.
3 Dead Trick or Treaters is possibly the only silent horror anthology ever made. The visuals are gritty the storylines rough and unpolished featuring acts of horror that are up close and personal. the film is blessed with superior editing bringing the whole packed together with a cleaver final story featuring the writer of the scribbled notes making the production a film that i can definitely recommend.
*** 1/2 Out of 4.
3 Dead Trick or Treaters | Torin Langen | Canada | 2016 | 72 Minutes.
Tags: Halloween, Devil's Knight, Silent Film, Kidnapping, Cannibalism, Homeless, Trapping, Writer, Pencil, Serial Killer.