Coming to home video on December 31st
Does anyone remember around 2006, when After Dark announced their first Horrorfest? It was the 8 Films to Die For, and it played at major movie theaters. You could get the one ticket to see the film that interest you, or be the brave soul who would get the weekend movie pass and sit thru all 8. It seemed between that label and Dimension Extreme, horror was being taken serious again and we were getting to see a lot of fresh new directors and films that made people talk passionately about horror again. Of all the titles in the first year, the one that always interest me the most was The Hamiltons. That was my first taste of what The Butcher Brothers had to offer. The results of their work since then for me have been mixed at best till now. The Thompsons is their best film to date easily. If you have not seen The Hamiltons do not feel bad, this film seems like a new film and not so much a sequel. The film opens with Francis Thompson being locked up in a box, and telling us how things led up to this happening. So for people who never seen The Hamiltons he gives you the backstory, gets you up to speed but also tells how they went from the US to London.
The film tells us in the opening minutes how The Hamiltons were traveling and stopped at a little hole in the wall, and while the place was being robbed, their little brother Lenny was shot. Well, after the vampire family kills everyone in that place, they are now on the run and their adventure takes them to London. They send Francis to a town named Ludlow looking for someone who can heal Lenny named Mandersen. Well, when Francis gets to Ludlow things turn out different for him then he was expecting and soon it is a fight between the now named Thompsons and The Stuarts for the only true bloodline. As the Stuarts are a different kind of vampire, they are stronger, faster and smarter than the Thompsons. A lot may have changed since the first annual After Dark Horrorfest, but one thing is for sure when The Butcher Brothers are inspired, they can really make a great film. This film they felt very inspired, they give you plenty of gore moments that you are going to dig a lot, and give you a Twilight vision with Near Dark material,with the backstory of Francis being a vampire, and Riley who he falls for who is a mortal and that since Rileyâ€™s family are all vampires, she is used to this lifestyle. We also learn that Riley cannot be turned into a vampire, and she seems to be torn between family and her love that you are never really sure who side she is playing for till later on in the film. The final ten minutes of this film sort of comes across as a letdown; they tried to build a tension that when the story is explained to you it really sounds stupid. The killing was fun, and there is a scene in the opening minutes that involve cutting off peopleâ€™s faces that was really cool. The humor of the film was so/so, it was not laugh out loud but it was smirk worthy. I really dug the first film, but this is such a vast improvement, and quite frankly has me excited about The Butcher Brothers again. I think films like The Violent Kind showed these guys have great concepts, but they seem to get lost as the film goes on. The Thompsons show that these guys are very talented and may have a franchise to keep on building on, as this story is so open to more possibilities. The little negatives aside, this film has so much to really enjoy if you are a horror fan. This felt like Near Dark for 2012.
8 out of 10