It's too bad that the makers of "Halloween Night" didn't submit the cover art to their DVD to IMDb. It's awesome: an evil looking jack-o-lantern has a hand gripping a butcher knife coming out of the top of it. The hand is covered with pumpkin guts which, if you look closely, has the bodies of the killer's victims blended into it. It is far and away the best thing about the movie.
But now, if you will, consider the rest of the DVD box. It claims to be based on a true story. The plot has a young boy see his mom raped and murdered in 1982. He is horribly burned in the attack, but ten years later he escapes from an asylum and returns to his home, where a huge Halloween party is going on, steals a costume from a victim, and infiltrates the party. Because the party involves a huge prank, no one realizes he's actually a killer, even as he goes around murdering partygoers.
So...based on a true story, huh? Apparently one of the producers used to throw Halloween parties involving pranks, and once someone escaped from an asylum while one of his parties was going on. But the escapee never came it to the party and no one was actually killed, making the 'based on a true story' claim even more meaningless than usual. It's kind of like me making a movie where I marry Sarah Michelle Gellar and say it's based on a true story because we were both alive at the same time. Sub-moronic.
The cover art also says, "In 1982, Christopher Vail was sent away after his family was brutally murdered...10 years later, on Halloween night, he returned". The back cover elaborates: "Based on the terrifying true story that started it all! Based on the actual events on Halloween night, 1982, an inmate of a maximum security medical facility escapes after brutally murdering two guards. Upon returning to the house when he was born, he goes on a killing spree that will make him Southern California's greatest mass murderer".
And let's break it down. The true story that started what all, exactly? If the events occurred in 1982 or 1992, that's still years after such films as "Halloween" or "Friday The 13th" used similar story lines, so I doubt it inspired them. And again, nothing like this ever actually happened, so how is he Southern California's greatest mass murderer? And why limit it just to Southern Cali; why not just say California since the whole thing is a lie anyway?
Most confusing is the fact that the film, according to everything the cover art claims, takes place in 1992. Yet everyone drives modern cars and uses cell phones and laptops of models which were not around in 1992. There's a lame reference to Melissa Etheridge when two lesbians take the screen; the singer didn't actually come out until after the release of 1993's 'Yes I Am' album.
Some other things:
- The killer (supposedly burned, clearly wearing a bad mask) stuffs a rag into a girl's mouth but doesn't tape over it, yet the girl is unable to easily push it out with her tongue.
- A body is hidden in a closet; someone then boards over the door frame and covers it with what appears to be contact paper. Despite the fact it doesn't match the pattern of the rest of the wall, sticks out a good three inches from the rest of the wall, and has a smelly, decomposing corpse in it, no one notices it for ten years. I would assume, since two people were murdered there, a cop might have noticed it at some point.
- When a girl taking a bath has her throat slit, blood dribbles out of a make-up appliance on her neck which doesn't even match her natural skin tone. Yet two seconds later, the tub is filled with blood.
- A blonde bimbo is somehow able to disarm a cop and shoot at someone over his shoulder before he can react. In addition, most of the gunshots leave exit wounds that splatter the walls but have no entry wounds.
- The cops set up roadblocks and have photos of the escaped killer, but never think to check his old house to see if he might be there.
As for the rest of the film? It was filmed pretty well and had a couple of decent effects shots. But there is zero suspense, the acting is simply atrocious (I'm talking sub-porn level here, which makes sense because I'm guessing most of the actresses came straight from that industry), and the film's tone veers between boring and improbable (my favorite scene has one the lesbians, while naked, kicking the killer's ass). Asylum Home Entertainment is quickly becoming to go-to company for really bad, cheap rip-offs of better movies, and "Halloween Night" shows why.
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