Children Shouldn’t Play with Dead Things is one of the most awesome titles in history, even if the movie itself isn’t any good. Touted as a horror-comedy, it’s neither scary nor funny, though certainly plenty weird. You would have had to be psychic to predict director Bob Clark would someday find great success in a variety of genres, to say nothing of being responsible for one of the most beloved Christmas movies of all time (and no, I don’t mean Black Christmas).
But that’s what makes this 50th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray so interesting. Everyone had to start somewhere, and like some of his contemporaries, Clark cut his teeth on regional low-budget horror before joining the big leagues. But unlike the Carpenters, Cronenbergs and Cravens of the world, Clark quickly left horror behind. It’s always fun to go back to visit a successful director’s humble beginnings, but the fact that Children Shouldn’t Play with Dead Things was the brainchild of the same guy who’d soon give us Tribute, Murder by Decree and A Christmas Story is morbidly fascinating.
|The scariest part of this movie? Those pants.|
The film has a pretty large cult following today, evidenced by a bunch of other bonus features, such as music videos, fan tributes and a couple of revival screening Q&As, where Ormsby amusingly admits he and Clark were inspired by Night of the Living Dead enough to rip it off. So while Children Shouldn’t Play with Dead Things is definitely no NOTLD (not even close), there’s a lot of interesting horror history to be found here.
DREAMING OF DEATH - An excellent feature-length retrospective documentary about Bob Clark’s horror years.
FAN Q&A VIDEO - Featuring actor/co-writer Alan Ormsby.
GRINDHOUSE Q&A - This one is really hard to hear.
MEMORIES OF BOB CLARK - Audio tribute to the late director.
CONFESSIONS OF A GRAVE DIGGER - Interview with Ken Goch…who really did dig a bunch ‘o graves for the film.
AUDIO COMMENTARY - By actor/co-writer Alan Ormsby, actor Anya Cronin (formerly Ormsby) and actor Jane Daly.
2 MUSIC VIDEOS - “Dead Girls Don’t Say No” & “Cemetery Mary,” both by The Deadthings, an Australian metal band.
FAN TRIBUTE VIDEO
TRAILER & RADIO SPOTS
SUPPLEMENTAL BOOKLET - Features an essay, “Bob Clark’s Dead Things: Low-Budget Horror in the Sunshine State.”