SHORT REVIEW: A TRICKY TREAT / CERT: TBC / DIRECTOR: PATRICIA CHICA / SCREENPLAY: KAMAL JOHN ISKANDER / STARRING: ANDREA FLETCHER, KEIRA MCCARTHY, LEONARD WALDNER, STEVE BREWSTER / RELEASE DATE: MAY (DATE TBC)
Directed, produced and edited by provocateur Patricia Chica, A Tricky Treat is a deliciously ghoulish, morbid comedy that asserts her weird wit, technical prowess and slick editing. If this three-minute short is a mission statement, then the genre better watch out. Given the success of The Babadook and the brilliant Soska sisters, women in horror are having their say, and it’s long overdue.
The plot sees a man kidnapped on Halloween by an oddball family, where his fate ends up in the hands of two children. From its torture porn opening to its subsequent head carving, complete with shopping channel muzak and overacting, A Tricky Treat subverts suburbia better in three minutes that any hackneyed Tim Burton feature.
The practical effects are deliriously wonderful, harking back to a more hands on approach. Whether it’s the eye popping or tongue pulling, it proves that while everyone else was tinkering with MacBooks’, practical effects underwent a renaissance.
With the hilarious twist, it’s like something dreamt up by Reece Shearsmith and Steve Pemberton for their Inside No. 9 series. Indeed, writer Kamal John Iskander understands the often fine line between comedy and horror, and how to blur and blend the two. Coming up to summer, it’s an odd watch, but like most horror fans who regularly dig out Carpenter’s ’78 slasher, it’s Halloween all year long.