March 21, 2014 Blood Shed: An American Horror Story (Movie review)
There are a few tips to surviving a serial killer; 1) Don’t do drugs, 2) Don’t have sex outside of marriage, 3) You must have survived a previous life threatening event, and most importantly 4) Don’t camp at a deserted cabin in the middle of Fort Ord, Monterey, CA.
Based loosely on true events, Blood Shed : An American Horror Story (formerly named American Weapon) is the latest movie by Writer/Director and Co-Producer Cliff Vasko, who makes a cameo as a Drill Sergeant at the start of the movie.
According to film distributor Tomcat Films `Thematically, the film is an anti-war statement disguised as a horror film, wherein all of the characters represent the American values being threatened by an unchecked military in pursuit of corporate domination of the planet.` This movie specifically draws from the Vietnam war, where many of the soldiers became unhappy with the degradation and horror of the war their government took part in. As young men were drafted to the war from all walks of society, statistically, some of those soldiers would have been mentally unbalanced or just plain psychotic to begin with.
On a simpler level, Blood Shed: An American Horror Story is a classic slasher film; the story of six attractive friends who head to the mountains for a fun weekend getaway, only to be stalked and terrorized by a war veteran, trained to kill without a second thought.
Native American, Maria (Maria Elena Laas: The Hot Chick 2002, Lunatics Lovers & Poets, Sold 2010), is coaxed by her friend Kiralee (Diana Toshiko: Bad Milo 2013, Horrible Bosses 2011) to head to the mountains to a cabin getaway with their friends, Deshaun (Amin Joseph: The Mist 2007, The Expendables 2010), his girlfriend Kia (Nika Williams: 50 First Dates 2004, B-Girl 2009), and couple Joey (Adam Brooks: Turn the Beat 2010) & Charlotte (Emily Burzynski).
The group mostly enjoy their first day at the cabin, with Kia and Joey doing drugs, Deshaun berates them for doing so, and Joey tries to sleep with a cranky Charlotte.
While relaxing in front of a fire on their first evening in the cabin, Kiralee provides the group with a back story of the local area, where five psychotic soldiers escaped from a psychiatric prison, only to get lost in the woods and froze to death. Only four of their bodies were ever found.
What shortly follows is the sole survivor of the prison escape, a psychotic twisted soldier brutally picking off each of the kids one by one, creating a bloody gory trail. The movie is heavily injected with anti-war sentiments, but provides an appreciation for the depths soldiers will go to under orders.
The camera work in the movie can be a little distracting from time to time, but as the movie goes along you are able to piece the puzzle together. There are times when the story-line drops off a bit and is replaced by its explicit title, but the acting is superb and the characters are relatable. Overall it is a must watch for slasher movie fans. CrypticRock give this movie 3 out of 5 stars.
Review written by R.L. Andrew