Title: Black Water Vampire
Director: Evan Tramel
Starring: Danielle Lozeau, Andrea Monier, Anthony Fanelli, Robin Steffen, Bill Oberst Jr.
Running time: 82 Minutes, Not Rated
Special Features: Behind the Scenes
A documentary film crew investigate a series of brutal killings known as the Black Water murders where women were found stripped naked in the snow with unusual bite marks on their neck. A man named Raymond Banks (Bill Oberst Jr.) was accused of killings, however the documentary crew aren’t buying his story and want to save him from his wrongful conviction. As they uncover more evidence that Raymond may not have been the culprit, they suddenly encounter the true killer and a horrifying secret the townspeople of Blackwater are trying to keep to themselves and will do anything to prevent from getting out.
Spoiler Alert. The best way to describe this film is The Blair Witch Project where you actually see what’s following them in the woods, cut with an ending similar to Fred Andrews’s Creature. The vampire effects are pretty damn good for a “found footage” type film, however the baby vampire wasn’t really up to par in my opinion. It looked like they picked up a rubber doll from a Spirit Halloween store and just bukkaked it in KY, which I don’t get because It was supposed to be a year old. I’ve never had kids, but I’m pretty sure they don’t remain all goopy unless they have some sort of medical issue, which would make me more concerned for the little feller than scared.
Some of the villager actors with speaking lines were not the best. I don’t know if they were investors or if they were the best they could get, but they should not have bothered if they couldn’t get professionals. It was like they were going for creepy, but they were trying too hard at it. Bugging out your eyes and staring intensely maybe worked for 1922’s Nosferatu, but in this film it was just laughably silly.
The “found footage” genre is old and tired; and for that I can’t help the negative feeling I get when I see yet another one. The feeling of dread of knowing a headache is coming from the hour and twenty-two minutes of shaky-cam. I will say again that I did like the special effects; they did a decent job compared to some other found footage horror films I’ve seen of late. The worst one I’ve seen of late was The Frankenstein Theory, where they just piled a bunch of animal pelts on a dude and had him show up like some low rent Slender Man. At least in Black Water Vampire, you actually see the creature you’re supposed to fear and some effort is involved in his appearance. I appreciated how the digital effects weren’t blatantly obvious and the splatter effects were realistic enough.
They still make these films for a reason, and I believe the fans of the genre will be happy with this newest effort.
Total rating: B-
Reviewed by: JM Willis