Directed by Brad Twigg, who co-wrote it with Leslie Monk, Ghoulish Tales is a low-budget anthology horror with a festive spin. Although it should be noted that Christmas serves as more a backdrop, rather than being a focal point of the movie.
A young babysitter gives in to the demands of the boy she is looking after to tell him some stories. Two she tells him, and one they end up being part of. You see, there is a killer wearing a Santa suit on the loose, and he’s heading to their house.
Before that though, we have two stories. One based around vampires and the other around voodoo. There is no connection between either, or the wraparound, and the quality varies. The former is slow, uninteresting, and extremely forgettable. Whereas the latter at least has characters and a solid finish. As for the third? It’s the only ‘Christmassy’ aspect of this film and it does have an unpredictable twist.
Credit can be given for the effort put into making the wraparound story matter, a must for all good anthologies, but Ghoulish Tales still struggles to leave any kind of mark.
The problems are many, but it all comes down to one thing, and that is lack of imagination. Those who compare it to the likes of Creepshow and Tales from the Darkside: The Movie are massively overselling the ‘quality’ of this movie. Yes, it’s an anthology too, but that’s about the only thing it has in common with those films.
None of the stories are compelling watches, and the combination of being overly long and uninspired, makes for a chore to get through them. Then you throw in some really suspect acting and extremely cheap visuals, and it’s clear Ghoulish Tales isn’t a recommended watch. It is an extremely forgettable experience that comes and goes without leaving any kind of impact.
Had it ramped up the Christmas-side of things, it would have least stood out a bit more, but that’s not the case unfortunately. There are so many better Christmas-themed horror movies, anthologies, and Christmas anthologies, that there is no reason for anyone to waste their time with this.
Ghoulish Tales (2014)
The Final Score - 4/10