Tom Holland's Twisted Tales was a web series hosted by our friends over at FearNet. The 'Twisted Tales' are nine short films, all written and directed by Tom Holland (Child's Play and Fright Night). They are stories about revenge seeking technology, tales of morality, drug abuse and werewolves, survival instincts, and dancing vampires. As with nearly every anthology series out there, there are high notes and low notes. Mileage always varies and enjoyment of the shorts is purely subjective.
Holland recruits a few familiar faces to genre fans. In these tales you will find A.J. Bowen (The Sacrament), who gets victimized by his GPS in Fred and his GPS. Danielle Harris (Stakeland) and William Forsythe (Boardwalk Empire) go tete-a-tete in the deal with the Devil tale To Hell With You.
Ray Wise has Mongo's Magik Mirror and a younger magician (Joel Ward, not very good at acting but excellent at magic) wants it so he can be the best magician in the world. Marc Senter (Red, White & Blue) summons the ghost of Jeff Spicoli and delivers a humorous interpretation of a goat demon in The Pizza Guy.
Otherwise, there are some standout shorts. Boom stars Atreyu (Noah Hathaway) from The Never Ending Story. He is the jealous husband and former military bomb disposal expert who builds the ultimate bomb to get back at his wife and lover. It is quite good and tense. Another one of the better shorts is Cached. This works because of Adam Rose as the maniacal serial killer caught inside tablets and smart phones. I did not think it would work either but then during the final chase Holland does this marvelous trick where the victim is running away and Rose is right behind him but can only be seen on the victim's tablet. It works very well.
Ones that did not work well, in my books, would be Bite. A new drug in town called Bite is supposed to cause hallucinations that help you see the future. Except everyone that takes the drug goes under another transformation. Then there is Shockwave, where a military satellite has exploded in space and it is sending an EMP shockwave around the globe. Dinner guests at a home in Los Angeles fight over a safe room that can only hold two people. And the series of shorts ends with Vampire Dance, in which a woman goes to a club to look for her sister and falls in love with a vampire. After a lot of dancing. No. Really.
As far as extras go, what you get are a few making of videos about some of the shorts. Except that they are mostly talking heads and everyone is talking about how awesome everyone else is and how thrilled they are just to be a part of it. "Everyone was so great. I'm so glad I got to work with this actor". One other thing that is always mentioned in these 'I love everybody' interviews is how quickly everyone was brought together so quickly. "I got a call from my agent on Friday and we began shooting on Monday". Holy hell!
Aside from that there are the usual hits and misses that come with anthology territory. I have highlighted my favorites.
Tom Holland's Twisted Tales is now available on DVD.
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