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Night Hunt

USA 2022
produced by
Clifton Wilson (executive), Dagoberto Soto (executive), Marta Teresa Silva (executive), Robert Tutman (executive), Alejandro Islas (executive), Ricardo Islas (executive) for Alpha Studios, Structure Productions, Bouncing Bunnie Productions, Unmasked Media
directed by Ricardo Islas
starring Adilene Martínez, Monica Ochoa, Ricardo Islas, Tiffany J. Curtis, Simeon Henderson, Lillian Lamour, Larry Biela, David Leonard, Tommy Corts, Jocelyn A. Dorsey, Steve Broumas, Kris Desautels, Andrea Leguisamón, Edna M. Luna, Radica Radovic, Nahvee Copening, Vonzell Scott, Luis Stalin, Nancy Romo, Gabriel Marroquin, Destiny Campos, J.J. Romero, Abel Bernardo Zabdrowski, Elizabeth Abraham, Mary Q. Angel, William Owens, Marvin Hudson, Joshua Gerard, Rasheed Blakemore, Renata Cezimbra, Jenny Sánchez, Dagoberto Zolio Soto, Kristy V. Acosta, Delilah Hefner, Clifton Wilson, Kirsten Andersen, Italia Altair Torres
written by Ricardo Islas, music by Maldoror, special effects by Hilario Rodríguez, special makeup effects by Alerie Vanderkolk, stunt coordinator: Gabriel Marroquin

review by
Mike Haberfelner

It all starts with a demented photographer, Andrew Craig (Kris Desautels), slitting the throat of one of his models - gruesome enough a story in itself but hardly headline material. However, the next day, said photographer is found dead as well, his throat brutally slashed by ... teeth. This attracts the interest of radio/podcast reporters Shelley (Adilene Martínez) and Pilar (Monica Ochoa), and with the help of the local coroner's befriended assistant Tracy (Lillian Lamour) they learn some pretty weird details about the case, like that Andrew Craig was killed by someone who ... was obviously long dead. Now if that was an isolated story, there might have something just gone wrong with the autopsy, but the next day, two more men are found with their throats slashed by somebody apparently dead. But this time there's an eye witness, Sandra (Tiffany J. Curtis), who has seen the killer (Ricardo Islas), and from now on the killer's after her ... but fortunately she can evade his first attack in a heavily guarded hospital for wearing a crucifix, but that attack has pretty much turned the place into a slaughterhouse.

Shelley and Pilar investigate Andrew Craig's studio, find among other things an urn and several notes regarding one Adrian Crowley, who after some research turns out to be some legendary vampire who might just have been brought back to life by the photographer. In the nick of time, too, they manage to get in touch with Sandra and try to warn her - but even though her brother (Simeon Henderson) has pretty much hidden her away in a heavily guarded fortress, Crowley has somehow gained access to the place. And helplessly watching Sandra's fight to survive, Shelley and Pilar have to come to the conclusion they're probably next on the vampire's kill-list - if they don't manage to kill him first ...

 

Now sure, this is not the first modern day vampire movie, and certain parallels to Hammer's modern day Dracula movies are hard to miss and very probably intentional (after all, there might be a reason why the company our heroines are working at is called "Hammer" of all things), but it's really how the story's told that makes the movie, seemingly effortlessly blending its horror roots with elements of investigative journalism and conspiracy theory thrillers, bits of modern gangland fare and even traces of comedy (especially in the interplay of the two protagonists) and yet never misses a beat, remaining highly entertaining throughout, thanks also to a dynamic directorial effort and a strong ensemble ably led by Adilene Martínez and Monica Ochoa. So be prepared for a fun ride indeed.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
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love and death and everything in between,
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Tales to Chill
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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