When George A. Romero and Stephen King collaborated on the horror anthology “Creepshow” in 1982, they brought comedy into the fold following the success of 1972’s “Tales from the Crypt” (which went on to become an HBO series in the 90s) and 1975’s “Trilogy of Terror” starring scream queen Karen Black who was upstaged by a toothy tribal doll. Over the years the horror anthology was kept alive by the “V/H/S” films, “The ABCs of Death,” and one-offs like 2007’s “Trick ‘r Treat.”

“Satanic Hispanics” is the most fun you’ll have at a horror film this year. Five Latin filmmakers, Alejandro Brugues (“Juan of The Dead”), Gigi Saul Guerrero (“Bingo Hell”), Mike Mendez (“Tales of Halloween”), Demian Rugna (“Terrified”), and Eduardo Sánchez (“The Blair Witch Project”), come together for the horror anthology that features five interwoven tales of terror blending genuine scares, with blood and gore, not to mention plenty of laughs.

Remember the scene in 1984’s “The Terminator” where Kyle Reese (Michael Biehn) is being interrogated at Police Headquarters? He tries to warn them that Schwarzenegger’s killer cyborg is headed their way and won’t stop until Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) is dead. “He’ll find her. That’s what he does! That’s all he does!” he screams, but the cops don’t believe him until it’s too late and bullets are flying in the action-packed assault scene.

Mike Mendez pays tribute to James Cameron’s sci-fi classic with the wraparound narrative that ties all the stories together. “The Traveler” takes place at an El Paso police station where a mysterious man played by Efren Ramirez (“Napoleon Dynamite”) is being interrogated. He is the only survivor of a mass shooting carried out by the Cartel and he warns the detectives that something is coming for him, and they need to let him go or they will all die. He begins telling them tales related to his travels that make up the stories within the anthology.

“Tambien Lo Vi” from Demian Rugna is the scariest story. It features a man named Gustavo (Demián Salomón) who’s obsessed with the Rubik’s Cube. He lives alone in a two-story house which may be haunted. He claims to have the ability to summon spirits by performing a ritual that involves chanting and the light of his cell phone.

With “El Vampiro” filmmaker Eduardo Sanchez goes for laughs. The slapstick and gory segment features an ancient vampire (a hilarious Hemky Madera) wreaking havoc on the only night he can get away with being seen (Halloween). He finds himself in a race against the clock to get home before the sun comes up after forgetting about Daylight Savings Time.

One of my favorite Hispanic filmmakers, Gigi Saul Guerrero, tackles the myth of humans who can transform spiritually and physically into animal form for “Nahules” which tells the story of an ancient witch (Gabriela Ruíz under great prosthetics and makeup) for the savage and violent segment.

And finally, Alejandro Brugués contributes “Hammer of Zanzibar” which gives off “Evil Dead” vibes with its blend of horror and comedy. Jonah Ray plays Malcolm (a great substitute for Ash) who squares off against a powerful demon named King Zombie (Morgana Ignis) with a weapon that you’ll remember for the rest of your life.

“Satanic Hispanics” quickly became my favorite film at Fantastic Fest. It blends the right amount of horror and comedy making it a fun ride. The special effects are terrific, the performances are first-rate, and the talented Hispanic filmmakers deliver great segments. It will become one of those films you break out every October to get you in the mood for Halloween.

The anthology horror film had its World Premiere at Fantastic Fest on Sunday, September 25, and will screen again today at 5:45pm

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Joe Friar head and shoulders

Joe Friar

Member of the Critics Choice Association (CCA), Latino Entertainment Journalists Association (LEJA), the Houston Film Critics Society, and a Rotten Tomatoes approved critic.