If there is one thing that can be said about Trick or Treats released in 1982, it never ends up being that good of a movie. It is not all that horrible a picture as there are worse to be had, but neither is it all that gripping or exciting. For a horror film, that horror is all but absent. Sure, there is a murder and a bit of blood, but if there was anything that could really be called frightening, it is the moment when the two collection agents for the asylum come into the home where the film takes place and abducts the man who lives there against his will. Having one’s freedom taken away has to be one of the most frightening things of all, at least more so than the couple of deaths at the hands of the man-made mad-man.
Everything about this picture is not only slightly dull, but fairly tame and so much so that it could have been a television movie of the week. The only interesting part of it all was the fact that David Carradine appeared and more than likely only for a paycheck as it in no way stretched any sort of acting muscle, not to mention the role being quite miniscule. Also starring Jacqueline Giroux as the lead, she seems to try her best, but the material is not there for her to really make anything of it. The child is annoying, the supporting actors poor and the villain of the piece – the aforementioned man who was committed and now escaped from the asylum, ridiculous in the extreme.
Nobody ever said making a movie was easy, except maybe Roger Corman, and Trick or Treats is an easy example of just that. Director and writer Gary Graver had all the right ingredients, they simply failed to blend together in the right way and Trick or Treats ended up paying the price. Altogether, it was not a truly terrible film, but it could have been much, much better.
2 out of 5