Fantasia Festival Review: THE MORTUARY COLLECTION Is Ghoulishly Macabre

3 out of 5 stars

The Mortuary Collection is an entertaining and darkly comic horror film from writer/director Ryan Spindell. A variation on the Tales From The Crypt type anthology, the film stars Clancy Brown as Montgomery Dark, the ghoulish Mortician in the New England town of Raven’s End. Dark recounts four twisted tales of death to a young visitor (Caitlin Custer), who mysteriously appears at his mortuary late one evening. Horror fans will know what to expect, but Spindell’s film looks and sounds great. Meanwhile Clancy Brown has a lot of fun as the horrible host recounting stories from his titular collection of tales. 

Each of the four stories within the The Mortuary Collection takes place in a different decade, starting with the 1950s and through to the 1980s. The first involves a thieving party guest whose curiosity leads to her undoing. The second sees a promiscuous college student get more than he bargain for after a one night stand. The third tale follows a husband who takes till death do us part too literally, while the fourth and final segment is a twist on the 1980s slasher genre, titled The Babysitter Murders (originally a short film that was used as the feature’s proof of concept). 

Spindell’s Kickstarter funded film punches way above its budget, managing to look better than a lot of big budget features. The rich cinematography by Elie Smolkin and Caleb Heymann makes The Mortuary Collection‘s impressive gothic set design look fantastic, while the special effects are wondrously icky. Credit most also go to Mondo Boys for delivering first rate score, which evokes the early film compositions of Danny Elfman.

Good old fashioned twisted fun, The Mortuary Collection ticks all the right boxes for an enjoyable horror anthology. 

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