Scream Horror Magazine

BLOOD MOON: Film Review

Posted on: November 8th, 2015

Set in the barren yet picturesque landscape of a dusky Colorado in 1887, a horse drawn stage coat rambles by with a group of unsuspecting travellers. On their way they encounter a mysteriously intriguing gunslinger that they allow to let travel with them. Two outlaws then interrupt their journey; they want to have their wicked way with the ladies and then terminate the men quickly to avoid capture.  The travellers have more brains than they let on and start running circles around the hostile men but it soon becomes apparent there’s something much larger running rings around all of them.

As a self proclaimed sucker for a werewolf movie it was hard not to find Blood Moon alluring from the outset – even more so because it’s British, and we do furry creatures exceptionally well. There’s a certain charm to films that combine two distinct genres in one, which is another great characteristic that was included in this film as the monster-horror genre met with Western vibes. Although this is no perfect film (they are extremely hard to come by) it captures some great elements that really showcase why small indie films can be the most provocative and exciting.

The opening scene is quite a brutal one, and it introduces us to what we gather will become the protagonist of the film as he presents himself with an air of authority and danger, paired with compassion. We quickly go from the carriage with all our characters to the abandoned town where the outlaws bound and gag the hostages in a swing-door clad bar. It’s slightly unclear at times exactly how many werewolves there are, but from the harmonised howling it seems the wasteland is littered with them, thanks to the red blood moon.

Often with indie films, the cinematography is so awful that it’s hard to overlook it in order to focus on the potentially fresh plot, but fortunately this film impresses by being well shot with some intricate set designs. Not only is the set work notable, but also some of the acting is genuinely impeccable. There’s a particular scene where one of the women is convincingly seductive and uses her womanly charm to lure the two murderers into a false sense of security giving the group an opportunity to take the night into their own hands.

Creating a believable looking creature must be one of the biggest problems to face directors on a budget, because you really need everything you can get to make it look real. Referred to as skinwalkers – if you read No Sleep then you’ll understand why this made me so excited – we only ever get to see obscured visions of the monsters, but towards the end we given a clearer shot that shows just how menacing and manipulative they are.

No lycan film is complete without a transformation scene and the one and only example of this was when one of the characters deceives another and starts to exhibit signs of being a skinwalker. The gore doesn’t fail as the skin is viciously torn away from the muscles to make space for the extension of wolf hind legs. Skinwalkers go hand in hand with guts and carnage, so it was nice to see the directors took advantage of this and messily ripped a dying man in half.

Blood Moon’s biggest flaw was that it lacked any real plot line that could have surprised me or possibly made me want to discuss it with someone. The lack of substance at the end of the film was a little disheartening, but everything made up for this so it was something I could overlook in favour for all the gruesome good bits. If you’re a lover of the furry feature and you’re looking for something that’s fun, easy-to-watch and bloody enjoyable then this is it.

Words: Zoe Rose Smith (@ZoeRoseSmitz)

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