Bullets, Fangs and Dinner at 8 (2015)
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Two Sides of the Same Coin
Favorite Movie Quote: "The Christians...."
The film opens at a Catholic Church - the scene of a vicious massacre. Now, anyone who follows the news, the easy assumption is some wacko is blowing away a pro-choice congregation.
Instead, it is hunt for vampires.
Despite its whimsical title, BULLETS, FANGS AND DINNER at 8 is a deadly serious morality play, with a conflicted vampire, and a vampire hunter. Matthew Rocca is Steven Cooper, a priest, respected and revered, who has successfully hidden his true identity, as a Christian-hating vampire, with his own coven, cleverly masked in a disco. Garrett Schweighauser, ironically named Michael.
Desperate to liberate himself from his abhorrent priest charade, "Father" Cooper plans a dinner party for his most faithful parishioners and contributors, with the intention of ridding the hated Christians out of his life. But, somewhere between the church massacre and the dinner party, certain complications arise that changes everyone.
Two years in making, BULLETS, FANGS AND DINNER at 8 (or BFD8) is a both an exquisite gothic horror film and an homage to Rocca's hometown of San Diego. Though not exactly a tour of the city, a la TRADING PLACES, the city is showcased as a backdrop to most of the action. But the real star is the writing, rich in nuance, storied to the point where you have to pay attention, and the often pained performances, where this reviewer can feel the aguish from the main characters. Of particular note is enigmatic Miss Blank, played by Diana Ferrer. Her character gives off an aura of ambiguity, where her motive is unsure to the audience. The ending reminded this reviewer very much was reminiscent of the 1971 Ken Russell Gothic Horror Classic The DEVILS. Anyone familiar with that film, this reviewer apologizes, for that is a spoiler.
On my personal rating scale, with "5" being drop everything and see the video now; if you're female, bear the producers' children and "0" being burn down the theater, murder the staff, and violate their dog, this movie earns a "4.75," using my Patented Bell Curve for Independent Horror films. BFD8, as mentioned is a film of struggle between destiny and penance. There were many believable performances, which is a testament to meticulous direction and proper casting.
The film is unrated, but has appropriate graphic violence, blood and gore, and language. It will play well on commercial television, and will be a hit on the specialty horror cable channels. If anyone is lucky enough to catch BFD8 at a local festival, make it a priority to go to a screening.
Starring Garrett Schweighauser, Eva Rocca, Matthew Rocca, Brian Patrick Butler, Diana Ferrer, Vinnie Pompo, and Joe D'Amato, and written and directed by Matthew Rocca, BULLETS, FANGS AND DINNER at 8 has begun their festival circuit.
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