Supernatural horror has dominated scare fare for the past several years, to the point where many die hard horror aficionados wish spirits would just stay dead for a while. Often set in haunted houses or featuring possessed people/dolls or curses, there are countless features which fall into these categories and, as a result, the spook sub-genre has grown somewhat stale. But that doesn’t mean to say there aren’t films out there which deviate from convention, and Blood Punch is a refreshing change of pace.
The story revolves around Milton (Milo Cawthorne), a meth-head who encounters more trouble than he bargained for when he meets Skyler (Olivia Tennet) in rehab. When they decide to break out together, he follows her and her psychotic boyfriend Russell (Ari Boyland) to a cabin in the woods to cook up some drugs, but their illegal activities are about to be bothered by a fate far graver than the law. Given Russell’s predisposition to act out, it’s troublesome enough; but their location just happens to be haunted by an old Native American curse, and they have to escape if they want to survive.
Films featuring curses tend to employ some kind of spooks to exact vengeful terror. In Blood Punch, the curse is more reminiscent of Groundhog Day. The film is a genre-mashing treat, implementing horror and sci-fi elements into a good old fashioned neo-noir. So if you’re a fan of Breaking Bad or even early Coen brothers crime flicks but wish they contained some hocus pocus then Blood Punch is a hit to the face you might welcome. Heck, there’s even some action shoot-outs.
Overall, Blood Punch is a cracking debut from Madellaine Paxson that bucks trends just enough to make a sub-genre feel reinvigorated, and it’s well worth picking up if you’re seeking an unusual diversion from run-of-the-mill offerings.
BLOOD PUNCH / CERT: 15 / DIRECTOR: MADELLAINE PAXSON / SCREENPLAY: EDDIE GUZELIAN / STARRING: MILO HAWTHORNE, OLIVIA TENNET, ARI BOYLAND / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW (VOD); UK DVD RELEASE TBA