8 Trick-or-Treating Scenes We Love


“I’m Harvey Pekar” from American Splendor

At least the kids in Meet Me in St. Louis wore costumes, which is more than can be said for the apparently always grouchy Harvey Pekar. At the beginning of the outstanding adaptation of Pekar’s comics, we see him as a young boy (Elf‘s Daniel Tay) trick-or-treating on Halloween. While the other kids are dressed as superheroes, he’s just dressed as himself. Sure, it foreshadows his cynical curmudgeonly adult persona, but it’s also a brilliant foreshadowing of the non-hero, autobiographical indie comic books that would come thanks to him and others.


Legless Girl Dressed as a Girl Getting Her Legs Sawed Off from My Flesh and Blood

If you have trouble laughing at yourself and your troubles, you ought to see this documentary about a family consisting of 11 adopted children, all of them with conditions that made them unwanted by others. The early Halloween scene is especially noteworthy for showing the joy these kids have in spite of their disabilities or diseases and, specifically, how one girl without legs has a great sense of humor regarding her costume. Watch the video below at about 3:45 on. Or just start it from the beginning and get hooked (but rent it properly, please).


Trick-or-Treating on November 1st from A Perfect World

In this film by Clint Eastwood, a kidnap victim confesses that he’s never gone trick-or-treating on account of his family being Jehovah’s Witnesses. Kidnapper Kevin Costner doesn’t like the sound of this, so he steals the boy a Casper costume and introduces him to the experience believed to be every American’s right. But it’s the day after Halloween, which means no more candy. Instead, the woman at the door, after seeing Costner’s gun, offers some other items, such as food and money. Unfortunately this scene isn’t online, but here’s another clip of the boy in his costume (he’s in it for the rest of the film) being introduced to another American right: riding atop a station wagon pretending it’s a roller coaster.


Donald Duck Picks Trick Over Treat from Disney’s Trick or Treat

In this 60-year-old Halloween-set animated short, Huey, Dewey and Louie go trick-or-treating as a witch, a ghost and a devil (whether that’s respectively, I have no idea). When they get to their Uncle Donald’s house, he decides to give them firecrackers rather than candy. What a jerk! The boys get help from a real witch in order to take revenge with real ghosts and other scares, but Donald still won’t give them a thing. What happens next? Just watch the full eight-minute film below, and let it be a lesson to you not to be “stingy, or your nightmares will come true.”


Rather than a reject, Christopher Campbell is a film school dropout. But he has since gotten a master’s degree in cinema studies and has been blogging about movies since 2005. Earlier, he reviewed films for a zine (a what?) that you could buy at Tower Records (a what?). He is married with two children.

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