Sunday, October 1, 2017

Movie Review: "Cold Moon" (2017)

Director: Griff Furst
Year: 2017
Rating: R
Running Time: 1 hour, 32 minutes
A murderer is haunted by the ghosts of the people he has killed while he tries to cover up his actions and avoid getting caught.

Part horror film and part crime thriller, "Cold Moon" offers a supernatural tale of revenge and justice. The film is directed by Griffin Furst, who also wrote the screenplay along with Jack Snyder. It is based on the novel "Cold Moon Over Babylon" written by Michael McDowell, who is known for writing "Beetlejuice" and "The Nightmare Before Christmas." All of the marketing for "Cold Moon" boldly advertises this fact. The film starts off as if it's going to be a murder mystery as a man wearing a leather S&M style mask attacks a teenage girl named Margaret Larkin, played by Sarah Catherine Bellamy, who is tied to her bike and dumped in the river. From that point on, it appears that this story will be a whodunit as the remaining members of the Larkin family look for help and seek answers. By the end of the first act, however, the audience already knows whodunit and the Larkins are no longer the protagonists of the film. The focus of the movie then switches as the killer and his torment become the main focus of the tale.
This guy is actually the star of the show. (Image provided by October Coast and Uncork'd Entertainment)
This movie is slow to get going. However, it's the moment when the false protagonists are no longer in the picture that it really starts to gain momentum. The killer himself is a despicable and extremely unlikable character, as a murderer should be. He has all of the worst possible characteristics a person can have and we as an audience loathe him after spending a mere five minutes with his character. From that point on, we found ourselves craving to see him get his comeuppance, and boy does it deliver.
Sherrif Ted Hale needs the "Curb Your Enthusiasm" music following him around. (Image provided by October Coast and Uncork'd Entertainment)
There is a sheriff investigating the murders named Ted Hale, played by Frank Whaley, and for much of the movie, we wondered if this guy could be considered the worst law enforcement official that has ever lived. He hardly looks for critical evidence and seems to have to be told how to do everything even though he's THE SHERIFF. This part can be a little frustrating to watch because he's so maddeningly idiotic. There are also a couple storylines that get started that never go anywhere as characters are introduced but play no part in the overall story. It's a wonder why they were introduced at all and adds to the messy feel overall.
Tormenting ghouls haunting a bad, bad man. (Image provided by October Coast and Uncork'd Entertainment)
The best part about "Cold Moon" is watching this killer get tormented by the ghosts of those he has killed. This is really fun to watch. Sure, the special effects aren't the best, but they are serviceable for a low budget feature such as this. There are a couple of creepy and bloody moments, and it all wraps up in an entertaining third act. Still, this is not the best movie we've ever seen. Also, just a word of warning for fans of "The Room" who may have been enticed to watch this film because of a certain name in the cast. If you happened upon the IMDb page for this movie and saw "Tommy Wiseau" in the credits, just be aware he has no speaking lines. If you blink, you will miss his part entirely. He isn't even a glorified extra,  he is just an extra and there was absolutely no need for him to be in this movie. In the end, even though it has several flaws, we still enjoyed "Cold Moon" overall.

"Cold Moon" opens October 6th, 2017 in the following cities:

-New York - Cinema Village 
-Atlanta - Plaza Theater
-Cleveland - Tower City Cinema
-Philadelphia - PFS Roxy Theater
-Chicago - Facets Cinema
-Boston - Apple Cinemas
-San Francisco - Roxie Theatre
-Denver - SIE Film Center
-Miami/S. Florida - Cinema Paradiso
-Los Angeles - Laemmle Music Hall

My Rating: 6/10
BigJ's Rating: 6/10
IMDB's Rating: 6.9/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: ---%
Do we recommend this movie: Sure, why not?

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