Welcome to 31 Days of Streaming Horror. Every day this October we’ll be highlighting a different streaming horror movie to help you get into the Halloween spirit. Today’s entry: Tales From the Darkside: The Movie (1990).
Tales From The Darkside: The Movie
Now Streaming on Hulu
Sub-Genre: Horror anthology with a surprisingly impressive cast, and the unofficial Creepshow 3
Best Setting to Watch It In: In a witch’s kitchen while waiting to be served
How Scary Is It?: Much like Creepshow, this balances its scares with a dark, morbid sense-of-humor, but there is some creepy stuff in here
Let’s take a look at the talent involved with Tales From the Darkside: The Movie, shall we? One of the stories was written by George A. Romero, adapted from a short story by Stephen King. And then there’s the cast! Deborah Harry, Steve Buscemi, Julianne Moore, Christian Slater, James Remar, Rae Dawn Chong, William Hickey, and David Johansen – just to name a few. If you’ve ever wanted to see Julianne Moore be attacked by a mummy (and who hasn’t?), this is your movie.
Tales From the Darkside is often considered to be the unofficial Creepshow 3 because of the involvement of Romero and King, and it sure as hell is a lot better than the official Creepshow 3, which will never speak of again. This film was a spin-off of the horror TV series of the same name, and it’s loaded with plenty of thrills and chills, and a few dark laughs as well.
The wraparound story involves a modern-day witch (Deborah Harry) who is getting ready to cook and eat an imprisoned little boy (Matthew Lawrence). To stall the witch from eating him, the kid proceeds to tell her a series of tales from a book of scary stories. From here we’re off to the races. The first story involves a nerdy college student (Steve Buscemi) bringing a murderous mummy back to life. The second has a hitman (David Johansen) dealing with a killer cat. The third is a dark love story borrowed from Japanese folklore (it was previously adapted in the Japanese horror anthology film Kwaidan). And the wraparound tale gets its own conclusion before the credits roll.
Of all of these, the mummy story is the best – and the nastiest – of the bunch. But everything here has its own ghastly charm. Best of all, since this movie was made in the ’90s, it’s loaded with tons of practical effects. We’re talking monsters and gore created with actual props and make-up, folks – a fine art that has all but been replaced by digital hokum.
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