Pray the Darkness does not find you. An evil preacher in the late 1700's leads an angry church mob to murder a farmer and his family in order to steal his land. In his dying breath, the farmer incites an evil curse and vows vengeance. One fateful Halloween night, the curse is accidentally unleashed and a group of teenage friends must now fight to stay alive and solve the ancient mystery before the whole town is doomed for eternity.
The film ALL SAINTS EVE opens some time during the 1700s, in a town known as Spring Hill. it is a scene in which a farmer named Kaleb and his family are slain after claims that they are involved in witchcraft. That might be what the victims are led to believe, however, what the lynch mob led by a Preacher named William, truly want is the farm family's property. The opening epilogue ends with Kaleb cursing the town shortly before being killed. Little did they know, how much of an effect this would have on the town in the future. We are then set in the present, in the same town, in which the family's former property still stands. Passed down through generations of his family. A young guy named Will, is the new owner of the property, by way of inheritance. For years the property, especially the old house, has been rumored to be haunted with it's past. However, this doesn't seem to be of interest to Will, who plans to soon tear it down, making way for some new condominiums. But before that, he plans to capitalize on the property's evil history, as he dresses up the property as the typical Halloween haunted house. With the holiday in full swing, good-girl type Maggie and her group of friends, whom are far more rowdy, have come to Will's haunted attraction for a good time and a few scares. And scares are exactly what they get. Because soon members of the group began to disappear, and later they turn up dead. Realizing that the situation is not just fun and games, but very real, Maggie and her friends find themselves fighting for their lives, as it is revealed that the ghost of Kaleb has returned, and is looking to avenge the farmer's death.
On the back of WILD EYE RELEASING's cover art for the film ALL SAINTS EVE, it is boldly pointed out to us, that the film features an all-star cast, people that have acted in films such as THE PEOPLE UNDER THE STAIRS, HATCHET III and Rob Zombie's HALLOWEEN II. It goes on to further state that the film's Director, Gerry Lively, was involved with films like HELLRAISER III and IV, CHILDREN OF THE CORN III, and a couple of DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS sequels. While the Director's previous work(which was mostly as a Cinematographer/Director of Photography), didn't actually sell me on the idea, I was at least a little curious about that cast. So yeah, where were the likes of Daniel Harris, Scout Taylor- Compton, or Kelly Jo Minter? What? You mean, they're not in this? No, they're not, because what the mention of those films on the cover art really means is that the film kind of features Actor Sean Whalen, who appeared in all three of those aforementioned titles, as the town's weirdo, a guy named "Floydo"(at least, that's what I think is name is). While Whalen is a talented and recognizable face in the Horror genre, he isn't exactly a selling point for a film. Especially a film as low caliber as this one.
So instead being a film driven by the kind of all star cast that it brags about, the film is led by a group of unlikable, characters, who are difficult to relate to, being portrayed by actors, whom do not seem to know how to effectively bring them to life. The end result, is a film that struggles along, going through the motions of even the most typical of haunted house flicks. Propelled by typical "jump scares", ALL SAINTS EVE offers up very little when it comes to surprises of any sort, and come to think of it, there is really no sort of plot development either. A guy shows up in a burlap sack mask, and is armed with a scythe, and kills a bunch of kids. That's basically it. How fun is that? Not much. It's because we have seen this type of mindless type of slasher film a million times over. ALL SAINTS EVE does not offer us anything that sets it apart from all of the other run-of-the-mill Slashers(In a bit of a coincidence, the killer in this film looks nearly identical to the killer pictured on the cover art for WILD EYE's release of the film, SCREAM PARK.). Give us something to remember. This film offers nothing of the sort, making it one that will be easily forgettable for most.
Not only is the film dull with it's story, the overall look and feel of the film is pretty cheap. I'm not usually one to fault a film's look, due to a film's budget or whatever it may be. But when you have a Director who has had years of experience in the field of film photography at the helm, you'd think his film would at least look the part, right? While, I do understand, that another Director of Photographer worked on the film, and that it wasn't Lively responsible in that aspect of things, you would think that he would step in and make things look good. But no, the film's look is very flat, appearing to have too much white balance visible. So with all of the negative, is there anything good about ALL SAINTS EVE? Well, I guess that I could say that the Actresses featured in the film are all pretty attractive(One of them being the "bikini girl" from "American Idol", Katrina Darrell). Which is almost always a good thing. However it will rarely be something that will save a film, and that is definitely the case here.
Overall, ALL SAINTS EVE is a pretty lifeless Slasher that merely follows the lead of just about every film of the type to come before it.
1.5/10 The film's most "gory" moments come via stuff like fake looking severed heads and hands, with a little squirt of blood every so often. Almost every kill in the film happens off screen, or out of view.
IMPRESSION OF THE FILM
ALL SAINTS EVE is a film that actually plays for about 67 minutes, despite its advertised 82 minute runtime. It's because after the film, that is just over and hour long ends, it goes into a pre-credit behind-the-scenes featurette, which I guess is an attempt by the filmmakers to "pad" out the film's length, as it appears that the film ended up being a little short. When a film has to end with a 15 minute behind-the-scenes doc, that's not a bonus feature, which features the cast and crew talking about how fun filming was, and what a joy it was to work with the Director, then you know it's doomed. Despite all of the film's promises, ALL SAINTS EVE is a film, that in reality, just isn't good at all.