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Alta Valley

USA 2022
produced by
Jesse Edwards, Joel Edwards, Daniel Kiedis (executive) for Evolve Studios
directed by Jesse Edwards
starring Briza Covarrubias, Allee Sutton Hethcoat, Micah Fitzgerald, Paula Miranda, Paulette Lamori, Ricardo Herranz, Oscar Balderrama, David Ogle, Danny Arroyo, Charles Robinson, Antonio Lexerot, Jeron Bray, Noah Collins, Josh Futcher, Tiffany K. Morales, Craig Rapacki, Todd Rulapaugh, Doralina Chavez, Harold Skow, Esteban Cueto, Dave Martinez, Allia Ramirez, Casey Fuller, Dan Fowlks, Danny Fehsenfeld, Omar Castillo, Andrew Rush, Jacquelyn Guzmán, Nan Weber, Clay Trimble, Stephan Watson, Jessica Staples, Dave Westwood, Jared Wells, Blackhawk Waters, Elise Hoehn, Stryker Henry, Shady Henry, Kye Tanner, Dante Bullshields, Erick Adrian Perez, Mikkel Brown, Blake Hansen
written by Jesse Edwards, music by Ryan Taubert

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Young Navajo-Mexican Lupe's (Briza Covarrubias) mother Adamina (Paula Miranda) is suffering from brain cancer, and only expensive surgery could save her - but that's money Lupe and her family just don't have. However, Lupe learns that her dad Carl (Micah Fitzgerald) who she never knew was still alive is filthy rich, and even though he and Adamina have broken up years ago on not exactly amicable terms, it might be worth a shot. So Lupe heads for Alta Valley, the land Carl apparently owns - but on the way there gets into a shoot out between feisty rodeo rider Maddy (Allee Sutton Hethcoat) and local gangster boss Antonio's (Ricardo Herranz) men, and is more or less forced to make a getaway with Maddy. Fleeing from Antonio's men, the two women befriend each other and Maddy agrees to help Lupe on her quest - after all, it sounds straightforward enough, a girl asking her dad for money she needs to save her mother's life - what could go wrong? Pretty much everything it turns out, as not only doesn't Carl buy Lupe's story, he also thinks she's after the deed for Alta Valley, which is actually signed to Adamina and not to him, and that on the eve of him trying to sell the land to an oil company, even though it's Navajo-territory. Carl is quick to lock up the two girls so they won't spoil his deal, and even plans to execute them. Fortunately the girls manage to escape, but not so fortunately they soon find themselves between a rock and a hard place, as not only are Carl and his goons after them, there's also that unfinished business with Antonio's men ...

 

I will say this movie has a bit of a slow start that tries to hammer its point home too early and too bluntly - but what develops on this premise is a very light-footed and very entertaining modern day western, one that combines a very likeable message with plenty of action and excitement and that's carried by two relatable lead characters And add to this a pretty strong ensemble cast, and one just cannot but marvel at the exterior locations, and you've got yourself just a pretty good movie.

 

 

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
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shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD