Horror fans looking for a new twist on the werewolf sub-genre should check out Bloodthirsty. The film features a female-driven cast and crew and features original music from co-writer Lowell.
Bloodthirsty follows the story of indie singer Grey (Lauren Beatty), who finds herself at a crossroads in her career and personal life. Grey has been having visions that she is a wolf. She’s also in a bit of a rut with the songwriting process for her new album. Seeking inspiration, Grey accepts an invitation to work with famed producer Vaughn Daniels (Greg Bryk).
Along with her girlfriend, Charlie (Katherine King So), Grey heads to Vaughn’s secluded home studio in the woods. Once there, she begins work on the album and experiences transformation in both her personal and professional lives.
One aspect that makes Bloodthirsty stand out amongst its peers is that the story is led by women. Not only does it feature a mostly female cast, it was also written and directed by women. In the past, a lot of werewolf films have featured a male lead going a through transformation. Female characters typically played a supporting role as a love interest or secondary character. In this film, the roles are reversed, and we see a female character front and center. In addition, the story features a lesbian couple, adding diversity to a genre that has lacked in that area for some time.
As a music fan, I enjoyed following Grey’s story. This film is a semi-autobiographical depiction of the struggles that co-writer Lowell experienced while working on an album. This added authenticity to the project and more depth to the storyline. Not only do we see the main character transform physically, but we’re also given a simultaneous glimpse into her emotional transformation and we see how this affects her relationships. The music in the film is both haunting and beautiful, and it is likely to linger in the mind of the viewer afterward.
Technically speaking, the film is well done. The atmosphere created at Vaughn’s retreat is dark and foreboding, and the werewolf transformations are both fun and frightening to watch.
The pacing and the gradual build-up of tension leading to the final scenes was also good. I found myself interested in what was to come, and never felt a lull in the action. The scenes flowed well, and there was a natural progression of Grey’s transformation and discovery of self.
As for what didn’t waiter work, I noticed some predictability in the storyline, and toward the end I did question the believability of a few features leading up to a big reveal. Aside from that, I would’ve preferred a bit more backstory on Grey toward the beginning of the film.
Overall this is one of my favorite indie films to see release this year. Viewers interested in horror with heart will find Bloodthirsty to be both haunting and impactful, leaving a lasting impression.
Bloodthirsty is available in select theaters and On-Demand as of April 23 in the U.S. and Canada.
WICKED RATING: 8/10