Bleed With Me
TRUE SWEETHEART FILMS (2020)
Director: Amelia Moses
Starring: Lee Marshall, Lauren Beatty, Aris Tyros
Fantasia Festival 2020 Selection
I was attracted to Bleed With Me because of its intriguing premise – the idea of a small group of people isolated in a cabin whilst one is paranoid that another is stealing her blood? Plus it’s set in winter? SNOW! A lot of boxes were already ticked so I was optimistic when it came to watching Amelia Moses’ latest effort (she had previously directed the short Undress Me, an episode of TV’s Fear Haus and Bloodthirsty which also starred Lauren Beatty).
More thriller than horror, Bleed With Me has an intriguing air of mystery surrounding aspects of the story but ultimately feels too pedestrian and slightly repetitive with the actions of its characters. Slower, atmospheric thrillers work when the characters are engaging and the mystery compelling and unfortunately the movie falls short on both of these counts. Neither the characters or mystery are terrible, absolutely not, but the hook isn’t there that would’ve ensured Bleed With Me remained gripping throughout. The premise is solid, Lee Marshall’s troubled Rowan joins her work colleague Emily (Beatty) and her partner Brendan (Tyros) on their supposed romantic getaway whilst Emily recovers from an accident and the couple attempt to rekindle their relationship. Rowan’s presence puts paid to the latter idea and her troubled mental state is pushed to breaking point by the belief she is being drugged and having her blood extracted. Now, why she would have her blood extracted is anyone’s guess but the movie takes too long in setting up any kind of explanation as to what is happening which, coupled with the monotonous and sometimes daft nature of the characters behaviours, means any tension or intrigue has gone by the finale. We’re led to believe that Rowan could be the victim or, in fact, the perpetrator whilst Emily must be evil but actually maybe not – it’s a bit muddled in execution. There is some nice horror imagery sprinkled throughout which was successful and the cabin setting was utilised and shot well – DoP René Arseneau crafts some effective, excellent looking shots throughout which deserve credit – but there is just a lack of momentum in general.
Bleed With Me has a decent amount of good ideas and some are pulled off nicely, however, the execution overall is flawed leading to a thriller which lacks any real thrills and a movie that loses steam before it ever had a chance to get going.
August 27th 2020