Cabinet of Curiosities
A not so nice man gets his just desserts when his greed gets the better of him.
Spoiler Level: Mild
A Cabinet of Curiosity is a collection of notable objects. The collection were usually a depiction of natural history and would often include oddities from geology, ethnography, archaeology, and religious or historical relics. So it is no wonder that a horror anthology consisting of stories of the strange and unusual would choose this as its title. There are eight episodes in total streaming on Netflix with the first two episodes being released on October 25th and then two more released each subsequent day for four days straight. The series is produced by Guillermo Del Toro and each episode has a unique director.
The first episode is entitled “Lot 36” and is a bit of a morality tale with those who have darkness in their hearts, getting what they deserve. In 1991 a military veteran named Nick (Tim Blake Nelson) wins an auction at a storage locker that belonged to an old man who passed away. Nick is not a nice man, he has been tainted by the harsh life he has led and feels he deserves a bit of payback from the universe. He is jaded, harsh, and a bit of a racist. While picking through the belongings in the unit, he stumbles upon some items that may be worth quite a bit of money, but these items take him into the world of the Occult and demon possession, which could ultimately lead to his own demise.
As of late, I have been disenchanted by a lot of the horror anthology series that have been coming out. It seems like shock value is replacing good stories with compelling characters. But I am happy to report that if the first episode is any indication, Del Toro has redeemed the genre and given me hope. The episode is directed by Guillermo Navarro and written by Regina Corrado and Guillermo Del Toro and is based off a short story written by Del Toro himself. Tim Blake Nelson plays Nick to perfection, giving us a complex character with many levels, who was ultimately hardened by a dark demanding world. He has lost his soul if he ever even had one. The other characters act as a foil to his, even his business partner, Eddie (Demetrius Grosse), who isn’t an angel, still has a bit of conscience left within him. The script is very well written with a lot of information being expertly communicated in a very short period of time. The plotline flows well and has a good rhythm, and the production value is high. The story depends more on quality writing, directing and acting, and less on gore or shock value. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
A great start to what seems like a promising horror anthology series.
Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities: Lot 36
- Writing - 9/109/10
- Storyline - 10/1010/10
- Acting - 10/1010/10
- Music - 10/1010/10
- Production - 9/109/10
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