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Monsters in the Closet (2022) Review

Monsters in the Closet, (not to be confused with Troma’s creature feature Monster in the Closet or Harry Benshoff’s book on LGBQT themes in horror films), is an anthology film from Zack and Spencer Snygg credited as The Snygg Brothers. If neither of those names ring a bell it may be because Zack has done most of his work under the name John Bacchus. Directing nearly forty films such as The Heaping Bouncy Breasts That Smothered a Midget, Vampiyaz, Kinky Kong and The Erotic Witch Project.

Author Raymond Castle (Tom Cikoski, Bite Me!, The Sexy Adventures of Van Helsing) meets a bad end while desperately trying to finish his latest work. His daughter Jasmin (Jasmin Flores, Beaster Day: Here Comes Peter Cottonhell) arrives to take care of his belongings and is immediately accosted by one of his publisher’s agents looking for the stories for his new collection, Monsters in the Closet.

Jasmine finds the stories, but there’s a catch. Her father used black magic to write them, and when they’re read out loud they come to life. The four stories make up Monsters in the Closet’s segments. Jasmine dealing with the aftereffects of them coming to life provides the wraparound.

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Monsters in the Closet’s first segment, Please Kill Me Again, was shot in 2012 by Spencer Snygg from a script co-written with Denyse Hollis. Shot from the POV of its protagonist Genny (Denyse Ruggiero) it’s the story of a woman who comes to during the zombie apocalypse only to find that she’s one of the walking dead.

The segment is mildly amusing as Genny’s attempts to help people and finally to get herself killed lead to the deaths of any humans she goes near. There are some quick glimpses of some nicely done zombie makeup and gore as well. Certainly better than the makeup on the zombies that turn up between it and the second segment.

And that segment is “Home Improvement” which spares us the ultimate horror by not involving Tim Allen. Instead, we get Zeke (Luke Couzens, Chimera) and Tina (Camilla Crawford), a couple who just bought a house that needs a bit of work. Unfortunately, their attempts to fix the place up leads to anything but “Happy Spouse, Happy House”.

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Co-directed by the brothers who co-wrote it with Crawford and Couzens, “Home Improvement” is a monstrous waste of potential. Anyone who’s gone the DIY route knows there are plenty of amusing things that can go wrong with home improvements. This misses all of them and ends on some power tool madness that’s neither funny nor frightening.

“The One-Percenters”.is Monsters in the Closet’s third segment. Tiffany (Jordan Flippo) wants to go camping with her friends, but her very rich, and very controlling father  Chester (Phillip Green) disapproves. She should have stayed home because she ends up accidentally killing her boyfriend Vinnie (Nelson JoaQuin). When the others won’t help her cover it up, she decides they need to die too.

This one is all on the Brothers Snygg, they wrote and directed it and it is awful. As you can guess from the title, It wants to be a comedy about wealth and privilege but Chester is too much of a caricature to be funny and everything else just falls flat.

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The final segment, “Frankenstein’s Wife” has the mad doctor (John Paul Fedele, Kraa! The Sea Monster, From Dusk Till Dawn) and his wife (Valerie Bittner, Billboard) now living in New Jersey. When Dr. Frankenstein accidentally kills his beloved, he of course, brings her back from the dead. Unhappy with this state of affairs she kills herself. Which leads to a series of deaths and rebirths, leaving her less human every time.

This segment at least has some amusing visuals, but it was far from funny and just seemed to drag on. Monsters in the Closet’s wraparound then ends the film on a note that feels like an attempt to spoof In the Mouth of Madness. It falls as flat as the rest of the film.

Judging by the IMDB entry for the opening segment and the lack of any recent credits for most of the cast, I’m fairly sure Monsters in the Closet was made up of shorts that were sitting around in a closet and spliced together much like Grave Intentions and Natasha Nighty’s Boudoir of Blood. It’s just nowhere near as good.

Gravitas Ventures will release Monsters in the Closet on Digital and On Demand on January 4th. You can check Zack Snygg’s Facebook page for details.

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