Saturday, October 22, 2016

Halloween Movie Review #22: "A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night" (2014)

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Movie"A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night"
Director: Ana Lily Amirpour
Year: 2014
Rating: UR
Running Time: 1 hour, 41 minutes

Arash (Arash Mirandi) is a young man trying to get by in Bad City while taking care of his junkie father. His life is changed when he falls for a young woman (Sheila Vand) who is really a vampire, who spends her nights walking the streets looking for her next victim. 

"A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night" is written and directed by Ana Lily Amirpour. This is her first feature length film. It stars Sheila Vand as the titular unnamed girl, a vampire who roams the streets of Bad City looking for her next victim. She doesn't seem to strike at random and tends to target exclusively bad people. Arash is a hard working gardener who has a junkie father. Arash does his best to make ends meet and keep his father out of trouble. His dad owes some money to a drug dealer and pimp named Saeed, played by Dominic Rains. Saeed takes Arash's prized classic car as collateral until he can get the money his dad owes. Lucky for Arash, Saeed winds up being the target of the girl, and in one bite, she changes Arash's life forever.

This film boasts an interesting take on the vampire mythology. It is very much a high art, beautifully executed horror film, though the deeds being perpetrated are very ugly. There is a bit of a romance as well between the girl and Arash, though there is always the underlying fear she could make him her next victim. The film is meant to take place in Iran, though oddly enough, it is actually shot in Taft, CA, which is a surprisingly convincing substitute for an Iranian ghetto. Side note: BigJ's dad actually went to Taft high school, so we know first hand. The visuals here are impeccably done and strikingly gorgeous, especially that of a haunting vampire girl in her striped shirt/chador combo.

"A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night" is an alluring film with an engaging story that is both romantic and eerie. It's unique in the way it executes its simple premise. We found ourselves enthralled by the characters and their motivations, as well as the look and aesthetic of the film, which is all shot in black and white. This is a wholly unique foreign flick you must see if you're into hidden horror gems.

My Rating: 8.5/10
BigJ's Rating: 8.5/10
IMDB's Rating: 7.0/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 95%
Do we recommend this movie: Yes!
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One year ago, we were being scared by: "Zombie Lake"

Two years ago, we were being scared by: "Maniac"

Three years ago, we were being scared by: "Poltergeist"

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