Streaming on Tubi!


Directed and written by Adam Green, Joe Lynch, Adam Rifkin, Tim Sullivan

In the great tradition of such anthology films as CREEPSHOW and TWILIGHT ZONE, and even TALES FROM THE DARKSIDE and TALES FROM THE HOOD, CHILLERAMA takes some of horror’s freshest new voices and gives them a half hour to have a hell of a good time. The film is not absolutely perfect, but hell, no anthology is. Even with CREEPSHOW, we have to sit through the Stephen King moss meteor segment. But the difference between CHILLERAMA and its predecessors is that the passion and creativity is evident in each segment. The route taken with this film definitely steers more towards gross out humor and over the top horror. The acting, though hammy, is well done, and the effects give a deep embrace to the horror films of yesteryear by being as practical and as rudimentary as they come. I think right about the time I wanted to go to the drive in to see creature features, the drive-in died in America. Very sad, really. But CHILLERAMA serves as a love letter to that drive in experience with each short film serving as a snapshot of a different era in horror.

Written & Directed by Adam Rifkin
Starring Adam Rifkin, Ray Wise, Sarah Mutch, Eric Roberts

WADZILLA is the first segment of the film and serves as an ode to classic Harryhausen monster films such as THE BEAST FROM 20,000 FATHOMS. I loved this segment which was directed, written, and stars Adam Rifkin (with acting chops I found quite admirable) as mild-mannered Miles Munson, a bumbling man with a low sperm count who goes to see quack doctor Ray Wise for a cure. The cure is a special experimental drug that goes horribly, horribly wrong as Miles’ sperm count doesn’t increase, but the size of his sperm sure does. Though this one has a grindhousey feel to it, it still embraces the genre of the monster run amok creature feature as toy tanks led by battalion leader Eric Roberts fire missiles at the toothy and testy teste-batter which once ejaculated, grows to monstrous proportions, sprouts teeth, and starts eating people. Though the tone is pure raunch, there are a lot of gross-out laughs to be had with this segment. Rifkin proves that he is an accomplished filmmaker when it comes to slapstick. Not to be taken seriously, WADZILLA packs a full gross load of cartoony, potty-humorous fun right up to its splattery “climax.”

Written & Directed by Tim Sullivan
Starring Sean Paul Lockheart, Anton Troy, Lin Shaye, Gabby West

Out of all of the tales told in CHILLERAMA, I WAS A TEENAGE WEREBEAR feels like the most developed. Whereas others are treated with a heavy comedic hand, this short definitely has laughs, but also carries a complex message beneath its goofy exterior. Lauding John Waters or Greg Araki as much as it does the teen angst-monster tales of old like I WAS A TEENAGE FRANKENSTEIN and I WAS A TEENAGE WEREWOLF, Tim Sullivan tells a story of a man not only deciding is he is gay or straight, but also what kind of gay man he will come out as. Like Waters and Araki’s films, the innuendo is over the top, but the message here is somewhat subtle in the subtext of whether or not to walk out of the closet with one’s head held high or come screaming out like a banshee. Though the effects are as crude as some of the humor, this thirty minute segment seemed to be the one tale in this anthology that would actually make it as a full feature film and transcends a lot of past the more humorous fare in the other segments. With catchy songs straight out of the BEACH BLANKET BINGO and GREASE, I found Sullivan’s segment to be a pleasant surprise.

Written & Directed by Adam Green
Starring Joel David Moore, Kristina Klebe, Kane Hodder

The combination of the over the top humor, the winks and nods to bad filmmaking, Joel David Moore’s impromptu German phrasings, and Kane Hodder’s groovy dance sequence secures Adam Green’s DIARY OF ANNE FRANKENSTEIN as my absolute favorite segment of the film. I watched and rewatched this gut-burstingly funny segment twice, since in the first viewing, I didn’t realize Joel David Moore is making up German words rather than speaking actual German dialog, and laughed till shit jiggled both times. Some of the gags in this segment are pure gold, though some have been seen before in other comedies, but Green still knocks this one out of the park. The fact that this is Kane Hodder under the ridiculous Meshuggeneh Monster make-up gives me new found respect for the former Jason Voorhees. Though I felt I WAS A TEENAGE WEREBEAR could have been a feature, DIARY OF ANNE FRANKENSTEIN feels just the right length, and the ending will have you laughing your ass off. Fun, fun stuff. More joke than horror, but still, great fun.

Written & Directed by Joe Lynch
Starring Corey Jones, Kaili Thorne, Cecil Kaufman, Brendan McReary

Joe Lynch has the unfortunate task of tying this whole thing together and he does so with a pretty capable hand, despite the fact that the narrative of this wraparound story is interrupted by the others. The surrounding story of a closing drive-in has all of the things we love about drive-in; crotchety but lovable drive in owner Cecil (OFFICE SPACE) Kaufman, star crossed lovers, concession stand romance, and of course zombies, Zombies, ZOMBIES. Some of the momentum of his story is stalled in the earlier segments to make room for the three features by his colleagues that are being shown on the giant drive in screen, but Lynch goes for broke once the zombies start advancing and he really seems to get into gear in the final scenes as the drive-in turns into the setting for a zombie apocalypse. Again, practical effects make this all the more enjoyable. Lynch is responsible for making this a seamless film rather than a jarring switch from one director to the next and he is very successful in doing so. His DEATHICATION trailer is as hilarious as it is disgusting, with poop used in ways that you’ve never imagined. It’s a heinously funny sequence you can’t unsee despite how many Drano to eyeball rinsings I performed.

Though not all of the humor hits its mark, this film, which showers itself in bad taste and pridefully parades around in it, is something to be admired. Films like these don’t happen often and as a fan of the anthology, I hope this one is successful enough to spawn a sequel. Though the brow is low and the tongues are firmly planted in cheeks in CHILLERAMA, you’re definitely going to have a lot of fun watching it.

Check out the trailer here!!