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Patrick Lussier
Omar Epps, Jamie Kennedy, Vanessa Aspillaga
Todd Farmer, Patrick Lussier

A no-nonsense detective tries to track down a mass murderer named Trick.
Rated NR

Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 101 min.
Price: $28.97
Release Date: 12/17/2019

• “Making Of Trick” Featurette
• Previews


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Trick [Blu-Ray] (2019)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (December 10, 2019)

When a movie’s publicity claims it will allow us to “witness the birth of a horror legend”, this sets a high bar in terms of expectations. 2019’s Trick makes this boast, so let’s see if it stands up to scrutiny.

Back on Halloween Night 2015, high school student Patrick “Trick” Weaver (Thom Niemann) slaughtered multiple classmates at a party. In pursuit, Detective Mike Denver (Omar Epps) and Sheriff Lisa Jayne (Ellen Adair) manage to pump five rounds into Trick, but the teen still escapes.

Though most assume Trick died, additional murders happened on Halloween 2016. And Halloween 2017.

And so on. With this annual serial killer on the loose, Detective Denver looks to solve the case and end the menace once and for all.

Earlier, I mentioned that the movie’s hype set it up as a new classic. Alas, those claims fall far short of fruition.

Though Trick manages to actively rip-off a classic. When you set a movie on Halloween, it comes as no surprise that you get compared to the 1978 classic, but those behind Trick make these links too abundant.

Really, it seems like a mistake to frame any kind of slasher movie on Halloween, but Trick doesn’t stop with the basic conflation of holiday and murder method. The film posits Trick as a silent, unstoppable sort who seems awfully similar to Michael Myers.

Sure, Trick attempts some variations on these themes, but only when it embraces tropes from other films. You’ll find plenty of additional influences in this wholly uncreative effort.

The lack of originality might matter less if the end result gave us something coherent. Alas, Trick never manages a tale that feels natural or logical, so it hops from one “scare” to another without grounding.

The filmmakers stage Trick like one climax after another. With little screentime devoted to anything but Big Fright Scenes, none of it creates an impact, as the constant barrage numbs the viewer.

The cinematic choices become a substantial obstacle as well. Trick brings some of the most obnoxious “shakycam” work I’ve seen in a while, and this renders most of the film’s potential thrills impotent.

While intended to create a sense of excitement, the “urgent” camera movement just leaves the viewer with a visual mess. It’s tough to tell what’s happening half the time, as the frantic style leaves an incoherent presentation.

Even for a horror movie, Trick abounds with Stupid People Acting Stupidly. They openly act against their own interests for no reasons other than to motivate more slaughter.

There’s plenty of room in this world for a new horror franchise, but fans will need to look elsewhere. Trick delivers a lazy, poorly-made recitation of clichés.

The Disc Grades: Picture B-/ Audio B/ Bonus D+

Trick appears in an aspect ratio of 2.35:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. Expect a good but somewhat erratic image.

Overall sharpness worked fine. A little softness interfered with the occasional wide shot, but the film usually brought nice accuracy and delineation. Some moving images could feel a bit blurry, though, mainly via elements to establish locations.

No signs of jagged edges or moiré effects appeared, and I saw no edge haloes. Print flaws also failed to mar the proceedings.

In terms of palette, Trick opted for a subdued sense of teal most of the time, though the Halloween setting added orange and red. For the most part, the hues seemed appropriately rendered.

Blacks looked dark and dense, while shadows showed acceptable clarity and definition, though they could feel a bit dense at times. This became an acceptable image without many real strengths.

The film’s DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack showed a fairly typical horror mix. It focused on the usual scope one associates with creepy horror films, so this meant a lot of spooky ambience and not much more.

That said, the mix did kick to life at times. Some of the stabs at scares boasted good involvement around the spectrum, and music provided nice utilization of the channels.

Audio quality seemed solid. Music was lively and full, while speech appeared natural and concise.

Effects also appeared accurate and dynamic. All of this led to a generally appealing soundtrack.

The Making of Trick fills 14 minutes, 48 seconds with notes from writer/director Patrick Lussier, writer/actor Todd Farmer, and actors Omar Epps, Ellen Adair, Kristina Reyes, Jamie Kennedy and Tom Atkins.

“Making” examines the project’s origins, story/characters, genre influences, sets and locations, story/characters, and Lussier’s impact on the production. A few minor insights emerge but most of “Making” spews praise.

The disc opens with ads for Mayhem, Monster Party and The Shed. No trailer for Trick appears here.

Dumb and lazy even for a horror movie, Trick flops in all possible ways. Rife with clichés and poor cinematic choices, the film becomes a tedious chore to watch. The Blu-ray offers acceptable picture and audio with insignificant supplements. Avoid this atrocious attempt at a new horror franchise.

Viewer Film Ratings: 1 Stars Number of Votes: 1
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