A post-apocalyptic vampire road movie, the award-winning fest favorite Stake Land combines bloody mayhem with sharp social commentary.
The winner of the Midnight Madness audience award at the most recent Toronto Film Festival, Stake Land has been impressing fest audiences by fusing gory shocks (the opening vampire massacre is a grisly highlight) with a focus on richer characterization and a sly sense of cultural critique. Jim Mickle’s moody, distinguished follow-up to his popular directing debut Mulberry Street also represents another crowd-pleasing American independent horror film from co-producer Larry Fessenden and his Glass Eye Pix group, regularly represented in Danger After Dark. The film unfolds after an apocalyptic plague has decimated the country, and orphaned Martin (Connor Paolo) teams with mysterious vampire slayer “Mister” (Nick Damici) to hit the road. They encounter the pregnant Belle (horror fave Danielle Harris) and a nun (Kelly McGillis), as the group tries to reach the mythical safe haven “New Eden” – yet, as in George Romero’s zombie films, sometimes the greatest threat isn’t the undead, but one’s fellow man. Mickle certainly delivers some horrific sequences of vampire violence, but Stake Land really impresses by placing three-dimensional characters in emotionally resonant situations, creating a memorable and rich modern horror tour de force. -- Travis Crawford
Saturday, April 9, 10:00 PM
Ritz East Theater One
Tickets at Venue