I see so much horror that when everyone around me has leapt six foot out of their seat at a jump scare, I just continue munching my popcorn, my pulse unchanged. So it was quite a surprise to find A Night of Horror: Nightmare Radio Review having me check I had locked the doors and leave the hall light on *just in case*.
A Night of Horror: Nightmare Radio is a call-in show for horror fans of all kinds to share their spooky encounters or listen along as the DJ, Rod (James Wright) tells several stories of his own. Whether tales about killers, ghosts, weird creatures or demons, as Rod says: “the nightmare never ends”.
Having had a sneak peak at some other reviews before I watched A Night of Horror: Nightmare Radio, I was expecting a typically cheesy midnight movie with a rather mixed bag of shorts to complete the anthology. However, I was pleasantly surprised.
The film opens with a segment which is a play on the children’s Halloween poem ‘ In a dark, dark, wood’ where a body snatching void of a demon is eventually overcome by the light. We then meet our DJ for the evening, Rod, where each phone call from a listener seems to prompt a new story binding a seemingly unrelated collection of horror shorts together beautifully. Like all anthologies, each viewer will have their own personal favourites.
Mine included ‘Post-Mortem Mary’ about a young apprentice who has to take photos of dead children ‘and make them look alive.’; and ‘Vicious’ where a woman arrives home alone and finds her door unlocked. She can sense an unseen intruder – even after carefully checking every corner of the house. This last segment was excellent at sustaining tension from familiar scenarios such as the pile of clothes on the back of the chair taking on a life of its own.
Those of you who like a little gore and human created horror would enjoy ‘A Little Off the Top’, about a hairstylist exacting revenge on a Hollywood diva, and the ‘Disappearance of Willie Bingham’, where a child rapist and killer is subject to numerous amputations as punishment. All were unique and interesting concepts and delivered well by cast and the crew behind each segment. There was a quality to each segment which did not betray any budget restriction or lack of experience.
My least favourite segment was ‘A Smiling Man’ which seemed a little too like ‘IT’s poor cousin without a unique storyline. It also led to confusion as to who was the child making the phone calls that haunts DJ Rod. Nightmare Radio is, of course, a wraparound story of its own. At times I felt the voice acting on the calls was stilted and whilst Rod’s responses did seem cheesy at times, it was entirely in keeping with the tone of the show. However, there was not enough structure to really deliver the story behind Nightmare Radio and therefore I felt this aspect of the anthology was sadly neglected.
Despite the mild criticism above, I absolutely loved this anthology and it had me gripped from start to finish. A Night of Horror: Nightmare Radio has something for every horror lover and would make for an excellent fright night film with friends. If you are alone or with your significant other, just switch off the lights and enjoy.
A Night Of Horror Nightmare Radio will be available on Amazon and Google from 21st December and iTunes from 30th December