Lord knows I love a horror anthology. Sometimes, you just want more bang for your buck. So when I saw that something called Fun Size Horror put out the movie Dark, Deadly, & Dreadful, I perked up. Could it be that this movie is full of “fun size” horror stories?
Dark, Deadly, & Dreadful: It IS Fun Size Horror!
First, you have to know what Fun Size Horror is. More than just a production company, it’s a collective of filmmakers. Filmmaker Zeke Pinheiro came up with the idea. Pinheiro knew other filmmakers who wanted to make horror movies, but didn’t have the opportunity. Their first goal was for everyone in the collective to make a short by Halloween. With the help of a crowdfunding campaign on IndieGogo, the collective was able to start achieving more of its goals. Pinheiro continues to lead the collective, along with Mali Elfman and Michael May.
As part of their mission, Dark, Deadly, & Dreadful comprises community-submitted horror shorts. According to their official website, it includes “top submissions to FunSizeHorror.com, world premiers, and festival winners.” They also mention some of the filmmakers involved, like “Joe Russo, Luke Jaden, Ben Sottak, Allisyn Ashley Arm, Jeanne Jo, Arif Khan, Youngmin Kim, Damien Leveck, and Justin Lee and Matt Thiesen.” Dark, Deadly, & Dreadful, incidentally, is Fun Size Horror’s first film that includes submissions to their website.
The movie comprises nine short films that clock in at about ten minutes each. Segments include “Weeji,” in which a ghost can’t spell, and “The Cleansing Hour,” based on a reality show about exorcisms. Sounds fun. The latter, incidentally, was later adapted into a full-length feature.
The Team Behind Fun Size
Since the creation of the collective, Zeke Pinheiro has mostly concentrated on Fun Size Horror’s work. He’s been the director, for instance, on a couple of their anthologies, as well as their TV show, Fun Size Horror’s Shocktale Party.
Mali Elfman has made some appearances as an actress, but she primarily works as a producer. Besides producing films and episodes of Shocktale Party for Fun Size Horror, she has produced outside the collective. For example, she produced Mike Flanagan’s 2016 film Before I Wake. She was also a horse trainer on the 1994 version of Black Beauty, an amazing credit.
Finally, Michael May has had a similar career arc as Elfman. He’s done some acting and some directing, but his most frequent work since 2015 has been in producing. He’s also written some segments for Fun Size Horror shorts.
Stories The Audience Told: The Reviews of Dark, Deadly, & Dreadful
As this is an anthology, it’s a little trickier to review than a movie with just one story. Stories in an anthology, after all, can be a mixed bag. Some of them can be incredible, while others can be snoozers. And that seems true of this film as well.
While some viewers didn’t like any of it, most viewers found something to like in Dark, Deadly, & Dreadful. Many viewers mentioned that the anthology gets better as it goes on, with the stronger segments coming in the second half of the film. “Weeji,” “The Cleansing Hour,” and “Room 731” (based on Japan’s infamous Unit 731 experiments during WWII) were mentioned as particular favorites–“Weeji” most of all.
The movie Dark, Deadly, & Dreadful is available on demand on Roku – sign up and watch it on HorrorMax TV!
featured image via Fun Size Horror
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Salomé Gonstad is a freelance writer who grew up in the swampy wilds of south Alabama. She now splits her time between the Appalachian wilds (of Alabama) and the considerably more refined streets of New York City. When she's not yelling about pop culture on the internet, she's working on a supernatural thriller about her hometown. Also, we're pretty sure she's a werewolf.