The framing device that is employed by Trapped Ashes is one that has been used countless times by horror directors, being that a number of individuals tell their scariest stories to each other lest they perish. What is new and interesting about Trapped Ashes is the fact that each story is told by a different storyteller. What this means is that Sean Cunningham, Joe Dante, John Gaeta, Monte Hellman, and Ken Russell all get about 15 to 20 minutes to go forth and tell their own stories and really capture the interest of the viewing audiences. The stories more or less surround the theme of demonic types of women either attacking or killing their prey.
The bonus features in Trapped Ashes provide further context into why the film was created, along with further information about the specific short films themselves. This means that there is a commentary that blends together filmmakers and cast alike, while the â€œdirectorâ€™s cutâ€ of both â€œThe Girl With Golden Breastsâ€ and â€œStanleyâ€™s Girlfriendâ€ are present, as well. There are a number of deleted scenes that bounce back and forth between being important additions to the overall narrative of the film and being extraneous material that made scene to cut, while the A Look Insideâ€ featurette has to be the strongest addition to the DVD. This is due to the fact that â€œA Look Insideâ€ focuses around the creative process and is really a behind the scenes to the creation of the overall film and the constituent stories that made up the movie.
I personally like the framing device that is used here, and out of the constituent stories, none really seems to drag the entire quality of the movie down. Rather, each story compliments the others, and gives viewers more of a reason to continue to tune in. The anthology film is not used too terribly frequently in the current period, and the quality of Trapped Ashes should show that it is a viable and profitable format. I know that beforehand, I had little information about each filmmaker. The quality of each story will likely get me out and amount to find movies done by each director, to see if they are at the same high quality as their story on Trapped Ashesâ€ was. If you like horror, make it a point to go forth and buy a copy of â€œTrapped Ashesâ€. The innovative look at the horror genre is exactly what is needed in a tepid genre.
Trapped Ashes (DVD) / 2008 Lionsgate / 104 Minutes / http://www.lionsgatedvd.com /