Grim Prairie Tales

A bounty hunter and a clerk traveling through the prairie rest and tell each other four stories of terror.

 

United States
1990
Feature Film
Realism: 
Plausible
Supernatural
Anthology
Tale Amount: 
4
Trickster: 
Impostor

Story 1

A man is punished for passing through a burial ground.

Story 2

A man rescues a pregnant woman in trouble.

Story 3

A homesteader family’s father is forced to participate in a lynch mob.

Story 4

A gunslinger is haunted by a gunman he has killed in a shootout.

4
Saddled with a bad script
6
4
5.04
4
1
3
2

Story 1

Story 2

Story 3

Story 4

Ambiance
Plot
Photography
Grim Prairie Tales won’t be the first film that comes to mind the next time you want to revisit a horror anthology film or two. It’s not up there with the Creepshows and Amicus. Its main quality is its combination of two uncommon genres, Western and, well, anthology. If the segments weren’t so underwhelming, this could’ve been interesting. As it is, no one cares about this flick.
The first segment is quite expeditive and tells the story of a man desecrating a burial ground with his presence. The second segment is simple but has a fun twist. It’s about a pregnant woman being rescued by a cowboy in shining armor. Segment three is more elaborate. It’s the only plausible story, and it involves a lynch mob. Segment four is about a gunslinger haunted by someone he killed.
There are well-known actors in this; James Earl Jones, Brad Dourif, and William Atherton, namely. They make a film with a weak script worth watching. Because the problem, here, is on paper. I enjoyed Grim Prairie Tales, but it kept letting me down every so often. So much work went into making this look and feel like a Western; it could’ve used a script doctor and some love.
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