The ABCs of Death (2013) Review

Easily the weirdest film I have ever watched, and coming from me that means a lot! As a horror film it’s terrible but if you pick some of the better shorts it has some clever and thought provoking stuff. In others you get shorts which will bring side splitting laughs. Then you get boring wastes of my time, about 50% I would say. The scoring is always weird on anthologies, so I tried to mark all of the shorts as one rather than marking each. Just because overall the stories are weak doesn’t mean there aren’t a few gems which I will highlight later. I nearly couldn’t watch all of this and would love to know if anyone else managed to see the whole movie in one sitting, anyone?

The ABC's of Death - Banner

Twenty-six directors. Twenty-six ways to die. The ABC’s OF DEATH is perhaps the most ambitious anthology film ever conceived with productions spanning fifteen countries and featuring segments directed by over two dozen of the world’s leading talents in contemporary genre film. Inspired by children’s educational books, the motion picture is comprised of twenty-six individual chapters; each helmed by a different director assigned a letter of the alphabet. The directors were then given free reign in choosing a word to create a story involving death. Provocative, shocking, funny and ultimately confrontational, THE ABC’s OF DEATH is the definitive vision of modern horror diversity.

Tim’s Film Reviews NOT Recommended

Story: 20%       Acting: 80%      Characters: 65%      Dialogue: 30%

Horror/Thrill: 20%      Style/Sound: 10%      Visuals: 45%

Total: 38%

The ABC's of Death - Poster

The majority of the stories were lazy and boring. Whilst others where funny and a small few actually good to watch, none of the short films presented through A to Z where scary or got close to inducing fear. This could be because they just weren’t scary at all or over the years I have become desensitised to most horror, but I at least recognise a good scare scene even if it doesn’t particularly make me sweat. The acting I thought was consistently good even if the stories weren’t and was pretty impressive considering some of the absolutely random short films featured. The characters were alright but to be honest you didn’t get to know any of them for more than a minute with all the deaths and what have you. The dialogue was pretty bad from most and lots of them had nearly zero dialogue, these making some of the more boring shorts but even the ones that did have dialogue were very rarely good.

The ABC's of Death - D for Dog Fight

Best Short: T for Toilet

Runner up: C for Cycle, D for Dog Fight

Weirdest Short: F for Fart

Sickest Short: L for Libido

Funniest Short: N for Nuptials

The ABC's of Death - T for Toilet

I was never scared or thrilled so obviously as a horror film it wasn’t good. This film at no point had any style and would most likely insult most peoples sensibilities as some of the shorts are rather sickening whilst others are laughable, whether that’s on purpose or not still made me laugh. Some of the short films had the most annoying soundtracks and nearly gave me ear spasm. Some of the visuals were good but I think the most where pretty bad with the first showing some weak practical effects and the Toilet Claymation was really good. So I give visuals an even score.

Must Watch Trailer:

The best reviews I found would be these “The ABCs of Death is an appallingly bad concoction of disgusting shorts that run through the alphabet but really should’ve stopped at “A” Rob Nelson. “While there is a handful of highlights to hold out hope that the feature may be coming to its senses, the majority of the effort is either deathly dull, superhumanly moronic, or just plain angry for reasons best communicated to a therapist” Brian Orndorf. “I’m a big fan of giving artists certain “obstructions” (to borrow from Von Trier) and see what they can come up with, yet the results of this particular experiment are mixed at best” Jason Gorber. “Overall, maybe 13 or 14 of the 26 segments are worth a look. In school that would result in a failing grade, but for anthology films it’s a pretty decent B-” Erik Childress.

My favourite scene would have to be well the Toilet scene as the short that apparently won the 26 short competitions I am quite happy for the UK director. You can get the short on YouTube and it’s a little funny but quite shocking at the end, easily the best of the anthology.

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About Tim The Film Guy

Very opinionated about films!

34 responses to “The ABCs of Death (2013) Review”

  1. themoviewaffler says :

    I’m looking forward to this in spite of myself


  2. Daniel Prinn says :

    Okay, I might have to avoid this… I couldn’t even finish V/H/S!


  3. Eva Halloween says :

    If you liked T is for Toilet, you should check out more by Lee Hardcastle. He does a lot of black humor/tremendous gore claymation reinterpretations of classic horror, like “The Evil Dead in 60 Seconds with Clay” and “Claycat’s The Thing: John Carpenter’s Masterpiece Retold with Claymation Cats.”


  4. sanclementejedi says :

    Damn, that looks like it would be hard to sit through.


  5. ruth says :

    Ewww, I don’t think I will be seeing this even if this is the last film on earth, Tim!


  6. theipc says :

    Excellent write up!! I think my favorite was Q is for Quack – WTH was up with G is for Gravity? Did you “get it”? That made no F-ing sense to me –


  7. jmount43 says :

    Love the poster.


  8. barronlouise says :

    I couldnt agree more! Isaw this film 3 days ago, and Fart was the most stupid short , the animation shorts are the best an yes Toilet was smart and edgy, Libido is sick but it’s good, I think i liked 3 out of 26 shorts all were pretty stupid, and i should have quit watching it at A. Great review tho


  9. sidekickreviews says :

    I just watched on youtube T for Toilet. Well worth the 5 mins to check it out!


  10. keith7198 says :

    Good grief! French film?


  11. Tyson Carter says :

    I got to F then decided not to continue……congrats for finishing it! 🙂


  12. Last Road Reviews says :

    Seems like it was at least a good idea. These days with very few exceptions I tend to,avoid newer stuff regardless of genre


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