At the local Halloween store this year, I noticed a prominent figure I did not know. Everyone can recognize the Freddy Krueger gloves, the Michael and Jason masks, but this child sized animatronic in orange pajamas and a burlap sack over his head was not within my horror movie knowledge. I immediately wanted to find out more about cute and mysterious little Sam and his sweet orange lollipop.
Turns out, he’s from a movie called Trick ‘r Treat that sadly never made it to theaters. I guess that’s why so many don’t recognize Sam. Trick ‘r Treat was supposed to be released in October 2007 but Warner Bros suddenly pulled it and the film was eventually released straight to DVD in 2009. I found this disrespected gem of a Halloween film currently streaming on HBO.
The film shows us five intertwining stories of a Halloween night in Ohio. We see a father teaching his son how to celebrate the holiday, in their own gruesome manner. There are a group of kids tricking an outcast girl who later get a taste of their own candy. A group of ravenous young women look for unsuspecting dates for the big night. And an old man is terrorized by Halloween spirits of the past. And Sam is along for the ride in some way in each story.
The story of the kids on the bus made me cry and not in a fun, happy Halloween way. That bit was almost too much, knowing those poor kids behind the masks were sadly just disabled and restrained in their seats like that. I have a feeling it may have been that story that kept this film out of theaters.
While the film can be a bit messy at times, I think this is one of the best celebrations of Halloween seen in recent film. It has stories engaging all ages (though this is definitely NOT a movie for children), all of them showing different ways to celebrate Halloween. I also love the comic book style opening showing us the rules of Halloween. I’d like to add Sam’s lollipop to my Halloween decor. If you’re into a modern, violent and gory twist on Halloween traditions like pumpkin carving, trick or treating or just partying then Trick ‘r Treat may be a fun Halloween treat for you.
“Never blow out a jack-o-lantern.”