Extraordinary Tales – USA, 2013

Extraordinary Tales is a 2013 international animated anthology horror feature film directed by Raul Garcia comprised of five Edgar Allan Poe stories (‘The Fall of the House of Usher’, ‘The Tell-Tale Heart’, ‘The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar’, ‘The Pit and the Pendulum’, and ‘The Masque of the Red Death’).

Each story is narrated by a different actor; the voice cast includes Christopher Lee (“Usher”), Bela Lugosi (“Tell-Tale Heart”), Julian Sands (“Valdemar”), Guillermo del Toro (“Pendulum”), and Roger Corman (“Masque”).

Cinedigm released a Blu-ray + DVD combo in the United States on February 2, 2016.

Extras include:

  • The Art of Extraordinary Tales
  • The Making of Extraordinary Tales
  • Audio Commentary by Director Raul Garcia
  • US Trailer

Reviews:

“Overall, for the big Poe fan, there isn’t much new ground struck here, nor are many of these versions decidedly memorable (I’d have to say that “Valdemar” and “Masque” were the standouts by far, the other three not doing too much for me visually), but it’s still an entertaining watch. At a mere seventy-three minutes, it’s a relatively quick sit…” Kyle Saubert, Allusions of Grandeur

“Animation rarely touches on horror- at least in the West- perhaps many assuming that animation simply can’t be scary. Yet this film proves that animation can deliver atmospheric chills with the best of them, and create memorable imagery that you won’t be able to get out of your head for some time. The ‘Usher’ segment is particularly strong in these regards.” Chris Perkins, Animation for Adults

“Aside from the annoyingly unimportant frame narrative, Extraordinary Tales is an enjoyable look at some classics of the horror genre by perhaps its most important founding figure. It demonstrates that the best stories age gracefully, and may just encourage some viewers to revisit (or discover for the first time) some of the earliest works of horror fiction.” Horror Talk

“The films can vary in overall quality, so they actually work better as a whole, as each builds on its predecessor’s sense of dread and misfortune. And while it may not live up to its titular “extraordinary” title, as a Poe primer, “Tales” is wonderfully wicked introduction for those who are willing to dance in the graveyard.” Rob Rector, Influx Magazine

” …in almost every case, the story has not been adapted so much as it has one of the various actors conducting an audio reading of it, which the animation is then used to in effect illustrate. Thus what we are getting are the stories told as they should be as opposed to their being padded them out.” Richard Scheib, Moria

“Director Raoul Garcia did a nifty feat in adapting five Edgar Allan Poe stories into animation form. Many of the stories have been done to death, so the animation is a novel way to keep them feeling fresh. He was also able to get a couple of genre all-stars to narrate the tales, some of them from beyond the grave. While the results are uneven at best, it’s no worse than most anthology horror films.” Mitch Lovell, The Video Vacuum

Release:

The film premiered on 28 February 2013 at the Luxembourg City Film Festival.

IMDb



Categories: 2013, adaptation of a short story, animated, anthology

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