Tales from the Darkside: The Movie Reviews

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½ June 15, 2015
Not as fun or good as Creepshow, but it does thoroughly capture the cheesy charm of Creepshow in an excellent degree!
½ May 12, 2015
Tells some good tales with better than average gore. The all star cast really steals the show and makes Tales From The Darkside: The Movie better than expected.
½ May 13, 2015
As an anthology horror movies it's one of the better ones for sure. The stories have no real twists or turns that will surprise or shock the viewer (like The Twilight Zone) and it doesn't have the style or substance of a movie like Creepshow, but what it does have is plenty of gore and monster effects, plus some good acting.

The first segment involves a mummy. It has the most big named actors of any of the segments and is probably the scariest of the three stories. It's okay, but nothing special.

The second segment is a bit boring, despite being written by Stephen King and George Romero. It involves an evil cat and it really isn't that interesting until the fantastic gore scene at the end. The weakest story in my opinion.

The last segment is the cheesiest by far. It has some cool monster effects and gore, but relies too heavily on a twist ending you can already see coming. It isn't that great, but the cheese factor is high and there's something about rubber suit monsters that is awesome to see in movies.

Overall, Tales from the Darkside as a whole is like the sum of all its part. Each story is okay, but nothing you need to go out of your way to see. There's nothing terrible about the movie, but nothing special about it either. Though, if you want to see an anthology horror movie then this is one of the better ones to recommend.
½ May 9, 2015
I think these tales had such potential, and they used gore and monsters that were typical for the late 80s, early 90s. But they really missed the potential. Take the second tale for example. They were so close to having a story that was a perfect metaphor for death from old age or natural causes, and the scene with the cat crawling in and out of his mouth squandered it.

It was entertaining enough, though that's not saying much from me. I'm easily entertained. But it was thoroughly unimpressive, with cheesy monsters and too-conclusive endings. The ending to the "framing" story of the boy boring. All in all, it showed potential but squandered and followed through too expectedly to be at all successful.
½ April 7, 2015
The Wraparound Story: A kid tells stories to a witch, (played by the lead singer of Blondie) to postpone being eaten. The kid is so irritating I was rooting for the witch.
Lot 249: A segment that proposes a truly horrifying situation; Steve Buscemi, Christian Slater and Julianne Moore all simultaneously forgetting how to act. They all seem to be competing to have the most apathetic reaction to being killed by a mummy.
Cat From Hell: Preceded by "Cat's Eye" and concluded with "Sleepwalkers", this is the middle instalment of Stephen King's "Cats Are Not Scary" trilogy. A hitman is hired by an old man to kill an evil cat. It's as hard to take seriously as the filmmakers did.
Lover's Vow: The most well-made segment that is all but ruined by the hilarious creature effects.
Overall: The filmmakers truly did not know the power of the darkside.
March 28, 2015
2 stars for the story with the gargoyle. The Disney cartoon Gargoyles made me love the monsters and besides this movie I've never seen them in a horror movie. We have a million Bigfoot movies but no gargoyles. It makes no sense. Anyway, the story is alright but the killer cat story was better.
½ October 30, 2014
Funny, campy, brutal--they took old school thrills and made them fun.
Super Reviewer
August 7, 2011
The alternative (competitor?) to the Twilight Zone movie but not quite in the same league in my opinion. The film consists of three stories within a wrap around story told by a boy who is going to eaten by a witch of all things.

First tale see's a man use a 3000 year old mummy to kill a few select people (an adaptation of a Arthur Conan Doyle short). Not a bad story and handled reasonably well with good makeup on the mummy and some bloody deaths dealt out. Big cast names in this story with Buscemi and Christian Slater and a nice ending make this tale the second best of the three.

Second tale is an adaptation of a Stephen King story and the weakest of the three, an old man is sure he is cursed by a cat which is trying to kill him after it supposedly killed his sister. The reason behind this being the old mans pharmaceutical company killed many thousands of cats in testing a new drug. Pretty lame story really which isn't particularly spooky in the slightest. The cat is obviously some sort of demon which is cool and this is shown in the way it kills the hitman who has been hired to get rid of the cat, I just think it could of been more scary or eerie basically.

Third and final tale stars James Remar and is about a guy who witnesses the death of a man by a gargoyle type creature. The creature lets the witness live if he promises not to tell anyone of what he saw. Easily the best story even though its not explained too well and leaves you asking various questions by the end. Some great makeup and effects in the finale as we see a transformation similar to finale in 'The Fly' with Jeff Goldblum, really nicely done without the use of CGI, no surprise with Dick Smith being involved.

Overall not as good as 'Twilight Zone: the Movie' and a bit more adult with its content, more blood 'n' gore on show and some creepy monsters lend itself to some light scares. Still two of the stories are solid and quite sinister which I'm sure fans will enjoy if you like these type of horror anthologies. The overall quality just doesn't quite match the Twilight Zone standard that raised the bar originally.
June 8, 2014
Entertaining horror anthology film in the mold of Creepshow/Tales from the Crypt, mixing horror and dark humor. The film isn't anything all that original, but it's competently directed (which is more than can be said of most horror films), had solid special effects (done by Dick Smith), and features an above average cast including Christian Slater, David Johansen, William Hickey, James Remar, Rae Dawn Chong, Robert Klein and early career roles for Steve Buscemi and Julianne Moore. The first story is based upon an Aurthur Conan Doyle mummy short story of revenge. This one stands out because of the cast Christian Slater as the lead and Steve Buscemi in an early part as the nerd using a mummy for revenge on mean trendy people like Julianne Moore with fabulous 80s hair. I'd also say this is the only time a mummy has seemed scary to me. The second one is probably the weakest of the three, based upon a Stephen King and George A. Romero story that was originally going to be in a Creepshow film. It's about a old rich man who hires a hitman to kill an evil cat that's evil and killed everyone else in the house. The third segment is the least comedic and does have a certain amount of sincerity to it that's missing from the others, mostly thanks to a strong performance by the underused James Remar. The twist at the end of the story is not too much of a surprise, but Remar makes it a story of the three that always stuck in my mind. And then top it off with a wraparound story of a young boy about to be eaten by a modern times witch, played by Deborah Harry, and stalling by reading her scary stories.
½ March 18, 2014
This early 90's horror anthology did not age well. Blondie is in it and Steve Buscemi, who even as it says in the movie's description is bug-eyed. He uses a mummy to kill Christian Slater and Julianne Moore. It gets worse from there.
September 13, 2010
Having never seen the TV show upon which this is based I can only guess that its fans were extremely disappointed in the terrible acting, awful stories, and horrendous effects.
Super Reviewer
November 18, 2013
Overall not entirely bad, the Black Cat segment was good, but the rest were boring as hell. An unnecessary spin off really.
August 22, 2013
Too dated and silly to enjoy now, but what a cast from 1990. Steve Buscemi, Julanne Moore, Christian Slater...
½ July 9, 2013
Tom Savini once famously stated that he considered Tales from the Darkside: The Movie to be the official second sequel to the Creepshow franchise. This view reflects that of the majority of fans, even to this day. The reception of the first Creepshow film categorised it as being a box office success which resulted in Laurel Entertainment, the production company behind the first two Creepshow films, toying with the concept of creating a Creepshow horror anthology television series. Following a period of negotiations and changes due to complications with the holder of the rights, a decision was agreed to change the series title from Creepshow to Tales from the Darkside. The series was well received by its audience and three years following the commercial release of Creepshow 2, Tales from the Darkside: The Movie was released in 1990, sharing many of Creepshow's production team, making it the successor of Creepshow and its first sequel.

The film in question follows three individual stories; Lot 249, Cat from Hell, and Lover's Vow. These three segments are all orientated around a wraparound story which focuses on a little boy being held captive by a middle aged woman who intends on roasting and serving him at a dinner party. In order to prolong the wait for him being put in the oven, young Timmy reads short horror stories to Betty, the woman who has imprisoned him. This is where the individual stories are incorporated into the film.

The first segment, Lot 249, focuses on an ancient mummy being resurrected from the dead and participating in a killing spree. Initially, this story is rather slow but once the resurrection takes place, some considerably grisly killings occur that you can't help but cringe at. This is followed by an interesting series of events which ultimately leads to a rather bleak ending, in a typical horror anthology fashion. Lot 249 has a strong cast in the form of Christian Slater, Julianne Moore and Steve Buscemi in which the slow opening can be forgiven through their performances. The atmosphere present throughout this piece is significantly unnerving which makes the conclusion come across as being even more chilling.

The second segment, Cat from Hell, focuses on the assassination of an evil cat with a mysteriously murderous past. This story was written by Stephen King and adapted for screen by George A Romero, the two minds behind the original concept for Creepshow. This story was initially going to be featured in Creepshow 2 but due to issues with financing and the budget of the film, it was scrapped. Although this piece has a slow, nonlinear structure, an interesting eerie atmosphere is featured throughout and has a similar feel to film noir, only a killer cat is featured as opposed to a femme fatale with a pistol. In comparison to the cast of Lot 249, Cat from Hell mainly focuses on the characters portrayed by David Johansen and William Hickey. Halston, played by Johansen, has an irritating factor to his character which makes him somewhat unlikeable and therefore, partially ruins this segment. Like with Halston, William Hickey's character, Drogan, also has an irritating factor to his character which also makes him somewhat unlikeable. Combining these two characters together into one episode results in the whole piece not being as strong as potential would allow. However, the reoccurring bleak endings throughout the film make this particular story worth watching.

The third and final segment, Lover's Vow, is by far the most powerful story featured in the film. The storyline focuses on a man falling in love with a woman who isn't what she seems. The beginning and the end of the segment presents itself as being of the horror genre but throughout the middle of this piece, it's a romantic drama. The codes and conventions of the romance genre make this piece somewhat addictive to watch as you feel compelled to follow the relationship of the characters of Preston and Carola. However, this makes the conclusion of the segment all the more heart-breaking. Whilst Tales from the Darkside: The Movie doesn't always take itself seriously, Lover's Vow is definitely the darkest piece as explores the deepest of human emotion. Not only this, but the ending is genuinely creepy and is enough to send shivers down your spine.

Overall, I feel that Tales from the Darkside: The Movie is a highly underrated horror film that's due more credit than it receives. Although it isn't as mainstream as the original Creepshow films, it could be argued that Tales from the Darkside is a stronger film in terms of narrative and acting in comparison to the second Creepshow film.
½ September 13, 2008
Tales from the Darkside: The Movie (1990) -- [5.5] -- A paperboy is imprisoned by a woman (Deborah Harry) who plans to cook and eat him, but he's able to delay her meal by telling her three tales of terror. "Tales from the Darkside: The Movie" is a somewhat underwhelming horror anthology that kicks off with a tale called "Lot 249," adapted from Arthur Conan Doyle. Steve Buscemi, Christian Slater, and Julianne Moore co-star in the segment, which features a dorky college student who resurrects an ancient mummy to exact his revenge. The second story, "Cat from Hell," is a Stephen King tale adapted by George Romero, about an rich old recluse (William Hickey) who lives in fear of a supernaturally-endowed black cat. Despite the star power and famous penmanship, the first two stories are mediocre at best. The film definitely saves the best for last. "Lover's Vow" is an original story by Michael McDowell (who also worked on "Beetlejuice" and "The Nightmare Before Christmas"). James Remar ("Dexter") stars as a down-and-out artist who watches his best friend get murdered by a hulking, winged demon. The creature promises to let Remar live if he vows never to tell anyone about what he has seen. After falling in love (with Rae Dawn Chong) and having a family, the demon's curse comes back to haunt him. In comparison to other horror anthology films, this one's better than most Hammer and Amicus films, but doesn't hold a candle to King and Romero's "Creepshow."
July 1, 2013
Very entertaining Horror Anthology--AKA Creepshow 3!!
June 17, 2013
Really disturbing for a kid but still is pretty good for an adult. One that respects the genre.
April 16, 2013
Not as polished as your general viewer would prefer, but still lots of fun with genuine scares and plenty of gore. Plus you'll laugh as the familiar faces pop up in all their early nineties glory.
April 14, 2013
I was pleasantly surprised with this film, though not quite the quality of the original "Creepshow", it is better than some other films of it's kind like "Creepshow 2" & "V/H/S."
Make sure to check this one out (:
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