Children are horror storytelling‘s ultimate enfant terribles. They don’t have time for rigid logic, gritty characters or dreary allegories about industrial repair. Nope, kids are about being efficient scare generators.
Friday’s edition of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon featured an all-star showing of what young macabre minds could offer this Halloween season, complete with Anna Kendrick and John Lithgow serving as conduits for these chilling visions. (Eat it, Black Mirror.) A tasteful studio fire and more-than-game readers help amplify this very “unique” approach to terror and we’re all the better for it.
Navigating their way around such fare as The Anonymous Man, The Hungry Ghost and Ghost Boy, the trio do the sensible thing and lean hard into their performances, complete with getting into character and passionately defending a ghost’s right to get McDonald’s. Lithgow’s impeccable credentials as an children’s storyteller are confirmed, while Kendrick adopts a kid-friendly delivery to share her tale. The subject matter is more to do with generally scary things than an in-depth exploration of death elementals or whatever, so it’s safe for kids (including “ghost boys”) even with the clip’s late night origin. Retrieve a flashlight, turn off the lights and FEEL YOUR SOUL RIPPED APART BY A HURRICANE OF FEAR!