Given the widespread success of Ti West's House of the Devil - the first product of a production relationship between MPI Media and Larry Fessenden's Glass Eye Pix - the expectations are high for Jim Mickle's Stake Land. The Mulberry Street director's in-production vampire picture is the second project in that same deal and with West's picture having set the bar extraordinarily high, Mickle has some big shoes to fill.
Well, though the film is not complete and there is no trailer cut yet, what MPI are showing to prospective buyers at AFM is the first five minutes of the film. And if these five minutes are any indication of what is to come then Mickle has just pushed the bar up even higher. Beautifully shot and mining the same 80s aesthetic that made House of the Devil so distinctive, Mickle wastes absolute no time at all plunging viewers right into the thick of his vampiric apocalypse. The action is immediate, visceral and bloody. The execution is tight, the characters all immediately engaging. And this thing has a mean streak to it, one shot in particular - and no, I'm not going to spoil it - making it very clear that no holds are barred in this picture.
Though entirely different in tone, this has just become the most exciting vampire film - by far - since Let The Right One In. I can't wait to see more. For those who want a tease, a concept trailer shot before the main production lies in wait below.
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