Hack ‘N’ Slash: Ryan McGonagle’s ‘Black Pumpkin (2020) Movie Review

Black Pumpkin is a new horror film written and directed by Ryan McGonagle (Legend of Fall Creek 2021). The movie stars Kamilla Alnes (American Horror Story TV series).


Film Synopsis:

On October 31, 2018, two preteens in a small town accidentally awaken an evil that has lain dormant for decades. They are forced to survive through a terrifying Halloween night of cat-and-mouse from the monster known as “Bloody Bobby.”

Black Pumpkin was definitely inspired by Halloween, as well as other various slasher films like Friday the 13th. From gore to sex, this film has it all and it is very well done.

McGonagle was able to capture the teenage spirit with a great script and unique characters. With the help of cinematographer Daniel Rink (For the Birds 2014), McGonagle’s shot selection is incredible. The movie has some really compelling shots that helps heighten it to a new level.

I really enjoyed the acting. Not only does the cast do a good job at portraying teenage angst, each actor makes it believable. The script fits each actor’s strengths and it shows in the final product.

This Is Halloween! 

The music is great and has some subtle hints to John Carpenter’s Halloween score. During the climax, the music does its job, making the film much more tense. I really love how much McGonagle and crew appreciated their predecessors by giving them little tributes throughout Black Pumpkin.

My favorite aspect of the film is how it captures the spirit and freedom of Halloween as well as the fear some people may experience. If I were to compare Black Pumpkin to anything other than Halloween, it’d be the Goosebumps TV series. It has the overall tone of youth and horror down to a tee. The film has its moments of gore, and they are well done. They aren’t too overwhelming and the gore doesn’t take you away from the story.

I really loved this film; it was well directed and written. Mix that with some great shot selections and a stellar cast. This film is one you should check out if you love old school throwbacks to classic slasher films of the 1970s. Black Pumpkin is now available on DVD and digital.


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About Anthony Baamonde

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