Movie Review: Return to Horror Hotel (2019)

November 1, 2019

Written by DanXIII

Daniel XIII; the result of an arcane ritual involving a King Diamond album, a box of Count Chocula, and a copy of Swank magazine, is a screenwriter, actor, artist, and reviewer of fright flicks…Who hates ya baby?

Here it comes cats n’ creeps, the latest arcane anthology to hit the horror biz; Return to Horror Hotel, a fright flick comprised of four fearsome terror tales!

First out of the gate comes Sleep Tight:

Disparate strangers take up temporary residence at a rundown hotel… we have a bitchy, slutty, drunken (the classic trio beloved by all!) aunt and her two young charges, a bodybuilder obsessed with his physical form, and strangely enough, two folks who’s legs are horribly infected and turning into oozing nightmares.

What do all these fine folks have in common? Why they all have to contend with beastly bed bugs who have gobbled up that muscle man’s steroids and mutated! Best part, that couple with the leakin’ legs; they grind up those creepy crawlies and sell the powder as a potent drug!

This is one hell of an off-the wall yarn, and a solid start to this collection… it’s like trailer park William S. Burroughs, and I loved every sleazy second! Adding to the fun are the game performances of all involved (with R.C. Sayyah as the muscle man mentioned above, and J Michael Grey as Ferd, the bug drug dealin’ dude being real stand-outs here) that help make this a real devious delight to slap your putrid peepers on!

Next up is Guillotine:

Doreen Grey (clever), along with her mousy gal-pal, meets an unsavory dude at the now familiar hotel, and trades her car for Mary Antoinette’s Guillotine; a block of wood that makes the woman who possesses it irresistible. As is the way, the object drives the friends apart and the resulting fall out turns rather unsavory!

This entry is more of a classic horror piece/morality play, and while not the outrageous spectacle the first story is, it is a solid watch.

Moving on we come to No Time for Love:

Comely Jonnie Rhey (Katrina Rarick) is asked to deliver a book to a hermit that resides at the hotel. After a minor accident, Jonnie finds herself inside the hermit’s, a former sailor named Davey (Jason Will Gaglione), room… a room that becomes unstuck in time. Soon everything except our heroine begins rapidly aging

Now this was a great one; a real Twilight Zone style piece with a fantastic premise, an outre and heartfelt narrative, fine acting and awesome aging effects and make-up!

So far we are three for three, let’s see if our final tale, Houdini’s Hand, can stick the landing:

Al Sharko (James Edward Thomas), the auto mechanic cum possessor of arcane artifacts, gets involved with a duo of small-time hoods who have squirreled up in the hotel with the fruits of their crime; a box supposedly containing the hand of legendary illusionist Harry Houdini.

When our two “heroes” open that damned box they find it empty… but it soon becomes apparent that heinous hand has merely escaped from it’s home and it is ready to fuck-up the lives of those that pinched it six ways to Sunday!

Featuring some bizarre flourishes that make it more in line with Sleep Tight, this one is a fun E.C. comics style piece focusing on unscrupulous folks getting their comeuppance via supernatural shenanigans… and I loved the hell out of it!

All in all Return to Horror Hotel is a surreal journey through some damn fine (and freakishly fun) terror tales told by folks with a genuine love for our beloved genre, and is well worth putting your eerie eyeballs on boils n’ ghouls (which you can do right here)!



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