Powered by Blogger.

Saturday, October 17, 2020

Review: The Mortuary Collection

Director: Ryan Spindell

Screenplay: Ryan Spindell

Year: 2020

Recently we have been hit hard with the number of horror anthologies that have been released. Only Shudder alone during the past few months, we’ve had “Scare Package”, “Verotika”, and now “The Mortuary Collection”. The horror anthology wave is not exclusive from Shudder, as other platforms have also been adding representatives of this style, as Hulu did just a few days ago with “Books of Blood”.

A young woman goes to a funeral home seeking a job. Once in the mortuary, she meets the mortician, an eccentric old man that collects the stories that lead to the deaths of the deceased he attends. Because of her curiosity, the mortician shares some of his macabre stories with the young woman.

As seldom happens in horror anthologies, all the stories come from the mind of the same person, the director, and screenwriter Ryan Spindell. “The Mortuary Collection” marks the debut of Spindell as a director and screenwriter of a full-length movie, although he has a few horror shorts under his belt, one of them that managed to be part of this anthology. Is Spindell talented in storytelling? The answer is a resounding yes.

In the four stories he presents plus the wraparound story, Spindell presumes creativity and exhibits his wide range of narration styles. The stories swing from being fun, campy, tense, and terrifying but what they have in common is that they are all entertaining and that they are based on a certain decade. For what the director shows here, the frightening horror is his weakness, while the campy and violent ones are his strengths.

Since the anthology in its entirety is directed by the same person, it maintains a constant tone throughout the full duration, with a particular color palette for its cinematography that give it a fairytale feel. This tone suggests that the source of inspiration for this movie was the ‘90s horror series and is reminiscent of the style of “Tales from the Crypt”, although much more refined and leaning towards the campy. In its inspiration, “Phantasm” also squeezes in, as the mortician seems to be inspired by the famous Tall Man, and it wouldn’t surprise me that it becomes the next horror icon because of its look and imposing voice.

“The Mortuary Collection” joins the long list of anthologies that have been released recently but secures a spot at the top of the list. The stories show a good range of subgenres, and they are all entertaining, being the last one the most surprising and the best of the collection, all consolidated in a great wraparound story. One of its weaknesses is that it never gets frightening, but is a movie that carries plenty of ‘90s horror series nostalgia and that fans of campy horror will undoubtedly appreciate.

No comments:

Post a Comment