61 Days of Halloween- Masters of Horror: The V Word

Most holidays worth their while encompass entire seasons, such as Christmas, for example. However, as you may have noticed there is a corporate push every year for us to think about the next holiday even sooner. While this has many negative side effects I figure I may as well embrace it.

Since Labor Day is really only good for college football and movie marathons cinematically it is as significant as Arbor Day, which means the next big day on the calendar is Halloween and we can start looking toward it starting now.

Daily I will be viewing films in the horror genre between now and then and sharing the wealth. Many, as is usually the case, will not be worth it so for every disappointment so I will try and suggest something worth while as well.

Masters of Horror: The V Word

Arjay Smith and Branden Nadon in Masters of Horror: The V Word (Starz Productions)

Now all that was previously said about this series is true. Even when you get one of these films that don’t quite work there is something to latch on to and take with you which isn’t always the case with other films. This film is inconsistent at best with regard to the tale it tells. While it does manipulate time well extending sequences for dramatic effect overall, however, when you take into consideration this film has less time than a traditional feature to work with it ends up being a detriment because it helps make for an anticlimactic end to the tale.

What you can hold onto in this film is that it is a rare kind in a horror film, which allows the characters to fully absorb the reality of their plight and to react to it emotionally.

The cinematography much of the time is uninspired, for example, at the start there is a tiresome series of rack focuses between hands of one friend playing a video game and the other texting.

Where this film falls into the realm of mediocre at best is what happens after the two friends leave the morgue. There is a very hard to swallow sequence with a series of attempted 911 calls all of which are disbelieved. It falls short both because of how it is written and because of the performance which is believable and makes the operator’s disbelief harder to swallow. There is also a mom who is far too slow on the uptake that something is seriously wrong with her son. The scene plays out for too long before its addressed. Not to mention the bloodstain which is explained away as something else and not investigated.
This is also a film, as is typically the case, with pretty good effects when they decided to do things practically and not so great results when it comes to CG.

If you’re a completist and make it a point to watch this whole series, which I highly recommend, then this film shouldn’t be high up on your list. If you’re just looking for really good horror look elsewhere.