Stitches – Blu-ray review

Director: Conor McMahon

Cast: Ross Noble, Tommy Knight, Eoghan McQuinn

By Brian M. Sammons

Clowns and horror go together like chocolate and peanut butter. There’s just something about that painted on smile that makes people fearful of what’s meant to be funny. The little Irish movie, Stitches, isn’t the first film to exploit coulrophobia for fun and profit, but it is the latest. Is it the best? Well no, but it is still a fun, and surprisingly funny, fright flick. So grab your greasepaint and your butcher knife and let’s go laugh ourselves to death with Stitches.

Stitches is the name of a grubby, alcoholic, foul-mouthed, birthday rent-a-clown. One day he goes to a party where some snotty little kids accidently cause his death. Jump to several years later and the brats are now horny, drug-addled teens. They decided to throw a party at the same house where Stitches died years before and the big bad clown isn’t going to lie down for that. So he resurrects himself and goes off to entertain the kids one last time.

Stitches is played far more for laughs than scares, which is to say that never once is it frightening in the least. So while the horror aspect of this horror comedy is missing, the comedy parts more than make up for it. If you’re a fan of dark, sick, and somewhat juvenile humor, you’ll love Stitches. Here you’ll find splattered slapstick, vulgar jokes, gory gags galore, and the darkest of black humor. Some are gross and seem right out of American Pie, such as a guy unknowingly drinking a glass of urine, others are just pure silliness like Stitches chasing a couple on a little tricycle and then being too out of shape to make it up a hill. Special praise must go out to UK comedian Ross Noble, who is just so wonderfully wrong as the undead, killer clown. He truly makes the movie worth watching.

However horrorheads need not be totally bummed out about this frightless flick. It does have a surprising amount of blood and guts that will make any gorehound wag their tail in delight. Stitches makes balloon animals out of people’s intestines, shoves an umbrella through a girl’s skull and then opens it, kicks a kid’s head clean off, and performs more marvelously murderous magic tricks that would even make Jason Voorhees clap with delight.

As for special features on this new Blu-ray from Darksky Films, there is a very entertaining commentary track with writer/director Conor McMahon and Stitches himself, Ross Noble. There is a making of featurette and then some bloopers and trailers rounding things off. So while there are some goodies on the disc, it’s not exactly overloaded with them.

Stitches is far more funny than frightening but no matter how you slice it, it is an enjoyable flick. Consider it recommend to those with strong stomachs for gore and off color humor. And perhaps even for those coulrophobics out there looking to laugh at what scares them. OK, maybe not for them, but for everyone else, give Stitches a shot.

About Brian M. Sammons

Brian M. Sammons has penned stories that have appeared in the anthologies: Arkham Tales, Horrors Beyond, Monstrous, Dead but Dreaming 2, Horror for the Holidays, Deepest, Darkest Eden and others. He has edited the books; Cthulhu Unbound 3, Undead & Unbound, Eldritch Chrome, Edge of Sundown, Steampunk Cthulhu, Dark Rites of Cthulhu, Atomic Age Cthulhu, World War Cthulhu and Flesh Like Smoke. He is also the managing editor of Dark Regions Press’ Weird Fiction line. For more about this guy that neighbors describe as “such a nice, quiet man” you can check out his infrequently updated webpage here: and follow him on Twitter @BrianMSammons.

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