Holidays ***

U.S. / Director Anthony Scott Burns, Kevin Kolsch, Nicholas McCarthy, Adam Egypt Mortimer, Gary Shore, Kevin Smith, Sarah Adina Smith, Scott Stewart, Dennis Widmyer /105 mins

Synopsis: Nine filmmakers present horror stories that revolve around Valentine’s Day, Saint Patrick’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Halloween, Christmas and New Year’s Eve.

An assortment of visions make up this horror comedy anthology in the same vein as V/H/S, based on various celebratory holidays throughout the year. 
 “Valentine’s Day” centres around a young, bullied high school girl who has a crush on her gym coach to grisly extremes. In “St. Patrick’s Day,” an primary school teacher (Ruth Bradley) wishes she has a child with wishes granted thanks to  black magic hell and a little ginger haired girl.  “Easter,” a little girl wakes up in the middle of the night to find the Easter Bunny. “Mother’s Day” revolves around a girl who gets pregnant every time she has sex and goes to a commune for psychedelic therapy. In “Father’s Day,” Carol (Jocelin Donahue) receives a cassette tape in the mail which contains her late father’s voice, urging his daughter to follow instructions so that they can be reunited. “Halloween” is based around the internet sex industry where an abusive boss (Harley Morenstein) gets a taste of his own medicine from his girl employees. In “Christmas,” Pete (Seth Green) is desperate to give his son the ideal gift hot with deadly consequences. The last segment  “New Year’s Eve” sees a first date between an lonely young woman (Lorenza Izzo) and a serial killer  (Andrew Bowen). 
As with most of these anthology films it is very much a hit and miss affair. Some of the stories work notably “St Patrick’s Day”, “Easter” and Kevin Smith’s wacky “Halloween”, while others like “Fathers Day” and “Mother’s Day” have really interesting premises but the payoff is disappointing and underdeveloped. None of the stories are very frightening or incredibly funny, but are more amusing, twisted and bizarre.
Thankfully there are more hits than misses. The most interesting part of the film is figuring out what each director has come up with on the specific occasion. 

Reviewed by Paul Logan

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