Director: D. Kerry Prior
Stars: David Anders, Chris Wylde, Annie Abbott
Studio: Lightning Entertainment
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 110 Mins
“The Revenant” is a film that has spent a couple of years on the film festival circuit. The film has played at festivals like Toronto After Dark, Fantastic Fest, Sitges and NYC Horror Film Festival to name a few.
Bart Gregory (David Anders) is an American soldier, who dies in combat. Once his body returns home and laid to rest, he suddenly wakes up to join the ranks of the living dead. Now awake, he finds out that his body is starting to decompose. With the help of his best friend, he begins to supply himself with fresh blood. When they start having to trouble acquiring this, they decide to clean up the streets by attacking the city’s criminals and control his thirst before he loses control.
With the hype surrounding this film, I was expecting this to be somewhat of a letdown. But I didn’t expect to really fall in line with these critics.
I really like this film a lot. One of the main reasons for this was Kerry Prior’s direction. He does a very good job making this film have a dark and gothic graphic novel feel to it, even though this film has comedic elements mixed in. Prior is successful in doing this, by using various background shots like the night shots and shots behind the duo’s apartment. It adds something that’s need in the film, especially in the second and third act. When watching a horror film, I like it when the atmosphere brings something to the tone of the film. This film does that quite well.
The other thing that makes this direction stand out was the acting. The acting in this film was very good. I thought David Anders and Chris Wylde worked very well together. They gelled well together, as they made their characters very likable and entertaining. Also, they played off one another very well. It’s a credit to Prior’s direction that the performances were entertaining and not brooding. If the dynamic between the two main actors didn’t work, then this might have a long film to sit through with its 110 minute running time.
Prior’s screenplay was dead on, as this is original from standard horror fare out there. I liked how, he was able to time and blend the humor with the film’s dark tone. It does a very good job hitting all of its comedic notes, as it’s done in a way that doesn’t affect the tone of the film. The other thing that I liked was the fact that the film was very edgy. This is not your standard comedy horror film, like “Shaun of the Dead” or “Zombieland” where you’re laughing almost every five minutes. Prior does a very good job adding dark elements to the story that leads to various twists that you don’t see coming. It works very well, because you think that this film going played mostly for laughs. The screenplay changes gear effectively, as there is a lot of bloody and horrific action that goes on. It makes for a better and more entertaining film.
“The Revenant” is hands down one the best horror films that have come out this year. It boasts very good direction and very good performances from its lead actors. The film is playing in limited theatrical release and through various VOD providers.
For more information on this film, you visit the film’s official website at: http://www.therevenantmovie.com/
Review Rating: Five Stars