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Monday, October 27, 2008

No TRICK 'R TREAT this Halloween (thanks for nothing Warners!)

Last December I attended Butt-Numb-A-Thon 9. For those who don't know, Butt-Numb-A-Thon is an annual film festival/geek pow-wow that Harry Knowles of the Ain't It Cool News website hosts at one of the Alamo Drafthouse theaters in Austin, Texas. For twenty-four straight hours, the invited are treated (and sometimes assaulted) with some of the best examples of the motion picture medium, hand-picked by Knowles. Almost a year later and I still can't help but giggle madly whenever I think of Feels So Good (the urethroplasty documentary that we watched during breakfast) and no doubt a lot of people who were there have tried to explain "BECAUSE YOU ARE WHITE!!!" to their friends. But anyhoo...

The final movie of last year's Butt-Numb-A-Thon - the one holding the coveted slot of "best unreleased film you had no idea was coming" - was Trick 'R Treat, a horror anthology by writer/director Michael Dougherty. Starring Anna Paquin, Dylan Baker and Brian Cox among numerous other familiar actors, I thought that Dougherty had crafted quite a wonderful "love letter" of sorts to Eighties-style horror movies with Trick 'R Treat. I wrote at the time that I was very much looking forward to watching it again when it was released the following Halloween. Y'all have no idea either how much I've been telling other people to be looking for this movie, 'cuz it was most certainly a terrific "treat"!

Except it ain't happening.

For whatever insane reason that they've got for doing this, Warner Brothers is withholding Trick 'R Treat from release. Barring some crazy miracle of distribution, it won't be seen this Halloween at all. Maybe next year though. Maybe.

Folks, there's a reason why Trick 'R Treat is being called by those fortunate enough to have seen it as "the absolute best horror movie" in years. It's darned perfect. The four tales told in Trick 'R Treat are so exquisitely orchestrated, the pacing is just right and the casting is spot-on excellent (to say nothing of Dougherty's wonderful script and directing) that this is a movie that demands not only a proper release, but for the suits at Warners to throw an unconscionable amount of money at Michael Dougherty's feet so that he can make that entire series of Trick 'R Treat films that he hinted about at Butt-Numb-A-Thon. Considering that the current slate of films is still recovering from the writers strike, Trick 'R Treat should be downright obligated to have prime territory at the cinemas.

This is, really, a very sad thing. I now feel like one of the lucky to have been able to enjoy this film. And everyone else should have the opportunity to be as delighted about Trick 'R Treat as we were at Butt-Numb-A-Thon last year.

C'mon Warners, give this film the wide release it deserves!


Brian (Nunchux) said...

It's nice to see that you're back to blogging. I hope everything worked out in your life.