Blood Hunters is a film I’ve been looking forward to for about a year now. So, when I got the opportunity to get a screener, I jumped all over it. This is an indie horror flick by an extremely talented indie horror filmmaker, and the description gave away just enough info to really grab your attention. Director Tricia Lee takes Corey Brown’s script and transforms it into a suspenseful, scary, intriguing film. Blood Hunters proves, once again, that if you are looking for an original story with genuine scares, you need to turn to the indie horror scene.
Blood Hunters opens with a woman (Lara Gilchrist), stumbling out of her house. The woman, Ellie, is obviously in a lot of pain and drops to the ground. When Ellie regains consciousness, she finds herself strapped to a hospital bed and nine months pregnant (and no, she wasn’t pregnant in the opening scene). She screams for help but the hospital seems to be abandoned and there are a few dead bodies of doctors and orderlies around her. There’s also an automated voice warning that the generator is only working at thirty-five percent, and as the film progresses, the generator slowly dies. It is a great way to add suspense and tension to the film.
Ellie manages to break free from her constraints and comes upon another patient strapped to a hospital bed. Henry (Benjamin Arthur) is just as confused as Ellie and has no idea where he/they are or why they are there. Henry also has a lot of flashbacks to events he never physically experienced. As the voice counts down to the generator’s demise, Ellie and Henry search the hospital for a way out or at least for some help. They come across Marion (Torri Higginson) who isn’t in a hospital gown. She tells them she is the IT specialist that was brought in to fix some technical issues. Marion relates that there was some kind of lockdown and there are things in the facility with them that are trying to kill them. She also tells them they aren’t in a hospital, but are in a secret research lab under the ground. What is the research lab studying? All that Marion knows is that the scientists inside were studying death. Marion does her best to fix the generator because the light is the only thing keeping the creatures at bay. Eventually, the three find two more survivors, George (Mark Taylor), a scientist at the facility, and Father Stewart (Julian Richings).
This is the first film I’ve seen by Tricia Lee, and I have already added her other films to my “must see” list. Lee has a great eye for horror. What could’ve easily become just another attacking-creatures flick becomes so much more in Lee’s skilled hands. The story is fantastic, and Lee expertly unravels the story slow enough to maintain suspense, but not too slow to drag it out. There are no spoilers in this review, but just know that what is actually going on with the plot was refreshingly original and pretty damn bad ass. The story moves along at a nice pace, the characters have a lot of depth to them, and the creatures look fantastic. They are horrifying!! Truly the stuff of nightmares. There are a few instances where the dialogue feels clunky, but the good vastly outweighs the bad here. And just wait until you see the scene when Ellie gives birth … it is an amazing scene that will have you glued to the screen all the while daring you not to cover your eyes.
Blood Hunters was released on DVD and various digital platforms this past July 4th. Look for it and treat yourself to something original and downright bad ass.
Director: Tricia Lee
Plot: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Gore: 5 out of 10 skulls
Zombie Mayhem: 0 out of 5 brains
Reviewed by Scott Shoyer