Castor’s Hallow’s Eve Duds – Trick (2019)

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The horror icons of our youth have faded into oblivion and in order to prefabricate another one in modern times is an onerous task. “Trick” Weaver is the latest in the trend alongside Victor Crowley, Adam Green’s sinewy backwoods demon. The X-factor here is that Weaver was a mundane, albeit polymathic high schooler who wasn’t bullied and without a history of sicarian mental illness.

Due to his anonymity, the central mysteries for the cat-and-mouse film are why is Trick so resilient and why is he so monomaniacal on a warpath of killing sprees? The arterial sprays and brick-leveraged decapitations are mounted efficaciously (if not wholly redundant) however the film is entirely pivoting on the tentative, exegetical answers to these queries.

Patrick Lussier and Todd Farmer don’t constipate the pace for modicums of character development, mythological lore or the ascetic home life of Detective Mike Denver (Omar Epps). Normally, that would be a shortcoming on the film’s behalf but the picture is assuredly tonsured and excised down to the lean essentials.

Instead of taking place over one Halloween night, the film luxuriates the audience with the Hallow’s Eve spirit by hopscotching between four perennials of October shenanigans. Schools and streets are festooned with hay bales, costumed celebrators and Night of the Living Dead screenings. Tom Atkins, the venerable genre journeyman, brandishes his shotgun and is always equipped with acerbic quips.

Is Trick’s malevolence a Fallen-esque airborne virus? A pact with Satan? How can he telekinetically anaglyphic to his image on a hospital television screen? Why the Jigsaw-like booby traps? By the last half-hour, the picture is too rudimentary and parboiled in a rough-draft scripting stage. Trick’s motivation is amorphous and Todd Farmer’s loose narrative anguishes because of it.

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