Cinemark Theaters and The Asylum have joined forces to present THURSDAY NIGHTS AT THE ASYLUM in theaters across the country, bringing underground and indie horror, thriller, sci-fi, and cult cinema to the masses. If you’re like me, you probably didn’t know this was happening. But that’s why we’re here; to spread the gospel. For the third week of the series we head down under with Bad Blood, directed and written by David Pulbrook and based on a screenplay/story by Patrick Edgeworth, writer of Raw Deal (1977) and BMX Bandits (1983). We’re huge fans of Aussie film here at Psycho Drive-In, singing the praises of films like Murderdrome, From Parts Unknown: Fight Like a Girl, Wolf Creek (movies and TV series), Mad Max and its sequels, and Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead, as well as the horror-rock of David Black and Darkness Visible. And that’s just the stuff we’ve written about. Australian horror/thrillers going back as far as Wake in Fright (1971), Picnic at Hanging Rock (1975), Dead Calm (1989), and The Babadook (2014) are in our DNA, so I was very excited to check out Bad Blood. On the scale of Australian horror, from Dead Calm to Wyrmwood, this film falls squarely in the Dead Calm camp of innocent people tormented by a psychopath. And while you could describe Wolf Creek with the same language, Bad Blood prefers to avoid the schlock as much as humanly possible. In fact, it is remarkably mainstream and respectable, taking itself very seriously. Ultimately, that ends up being its greatest weakness, too. After an opening title sequence that is magnificently creepy, the film settles into what is a perfectly professional narrative about Vincent (Xavier Samuel doing his best Johnny Depp American accent), a writer with a troubled past struggling with writer’s block, his new girlfriend Carrie (Morgan Griffin), who is a veterinarian, I guess, and the mysterious figure stalking them both. The film does a good job of establishing uncertainty early, so when Samuel is revealed as the stalker, we’re initially wondering if he is Vincent’s split personality, perhaps some sort of Dark Half-esque Doppelganger, someone more Dario Argento-inspired, or – worst case scenario – his Evil Twin. Rather than keep the audience guessing, allowing tension to build to the climax where Vincent and Carrie head off to an isolated country home belonging to his editor, the mystery is revealed extremely early, and rather than keep another twist or two in its pocket for that isolated climax, we get a by-the-numbers approach that fails to maintain any suspense at all. There are even a number of clear opportunities in the final forty-five minutes that could have easily been used to take the story into more original, or at least more interesting areas, but they don’t amount to anything. At all. Pulbrook doesn’t even give us the titillation of sex/nudity or the shock of real gore to keep the viewers’ interest. What he does show is extremely vanilla. You could practically show this on daytime television with no cuts. Maybe a couple of bleeps for language, but to be honest, I can’t even remember any swearing. Bad Blood looks great and all the actors do excellent jobs with what they’re given. They’re just not given much. And without a decent script, we don’t even get the equivalent of the straightforward suspense of Dead Calm, instead getting just a bland exercise in futility. Here’s where you can see it tonight: Movies 16 + XD (Lubbock, TX) Hollywood 17 (Mcallen, TX) College Station + XD (College Station, TX) Tinseltown 17 (Erie, PA) Cinemark Movies 16 + XD (Somerdale, NJ) Movies 14 (Mishawaka, IN) Cinemark Tinseltown 17 + XD (Grapevine, TX) Tinseltown 20 + XD (El Paso, TX) Tinseltown 20 + XD (Pflugerville, TX) Cinemark Tinseltown + XD (Louisville, KY) Tinseltown 14 (Oak Ridge, TN) Tinseltown 14 (Pueblo, CO) Legacy 24 + XD (Plano, TX) Cinemark Tinseltown 20 + XD (Oklahoma City, OK) Cinemark Tinseltown 20 + XD (Merriam, KS) Tinseltown 20 + XD (Jacksonville, FL) Tinseltown 17 (Fayetteville, GA) Cinemark 17 + IMAX (Tulsa, OK) Cinemark 19 + XD (Katy, TX) Tinseltown 14 (Bristol, VA) Moosic 20 + XD (Moosic, PA) Valley View 24 + XD (Valley View, OH) Cinemark Orlando + XD (Orlando, FL) Cinemark 24 + XD (West Jordan, UT) Cinemark 18 + XD (Webster, TX) Carefree Circle 16 + IMAX (Colorado Springs, CO) Cinemark 16 (Fort Collins, CO) Cinemark 15 + XD (Hadley, MA) Cinemark 14 @ The Pike + XD (Long Beach, CA) Cinemark 14 + XD (Lake Charles, LA) Pittsburgh Mills Mall 18 + IMAX (Tarentum, PA) Cinemark 16 (Mesa, AZ) Cinemark Perkins Rowe + XD (Baton Rouge, LA) Cinemark Fayette Mall 16 + XD (Lexington, KY) Mountain View Cinema 16 (Mountain View, CA) Albuquerque Rio 24 + XD (Albuquerque, NM) Orange Stadium Promenade 25 + XD (Orange, CA) Century Parklane (Reno, NV) Portland Eastport Plaza (Portland, OR) Anchorage 16 + XD (Anchorage, AK) Century El Con + XD (Tucson, AZ) Evanston 18 + XD (Evanston, IL) Las Vegas Samstown 18 (Las Vegas, NV) Century Walnut Creek 14 + XD (Walnut Creek, CA) Sacramento Greenback 16 + XD (Sacramento, CA) San Jose Oakridge 20 + XD (San Jose, CA) Century 16 Bel Mar + XD (Lakewood, CO) Des Moines Jordan Creek + XD (West Des Moines, IA) Huntington Beach Bella Terra 20 + XD (Huntington Beach, CA) Las Vegas Santa Fe Station 16 + XD (Las Vegas, NV) Sandy Union Heights 16 (Sandy, UT) Century 16 (Boulder, CO) Century Federal Way + XD (Federal Way, WA) Century River Park 16 + XD (10/26) (Oxnard, CA) Cinemark Robinson Township + XD (Robinson Township, PA) Cinemark 14 (5/8) (Joliet, IL) Cinemark 12 (6/24) (Barboursville, WV) Paradise 24 + XD (Davie, FL) Egyptian 24 + XD (Hanover, MD) Cinemark Farmington + XD (Farmington, UT) Christiana + XD (Newark, DE) Cinemark Oakley Station + XD (Cincinnati, OH) Cinemark North Hills + XD (Pittsburgh, PA) Colonel Glenn 18 + XD (Little Rock, AR) Cinemark 18 and XD (Los Angeles, CA) Buckland Hills 18 IMAX (Manchester, CT) Preston Crossings 16 (Louisville, KY) Flint West 14 (Flint, MI) Ann Arbor 20 IMAX (Ypsilanti, MI) Hazlet 12 (Hazlet, NJ) Dayton South 16 + XD (West Carrollton, OH) Milford 16 (Milford, OH) Fallen Timbers 14 + XD (Maumee, OH) Franklin Park 16 + XD (Toledo, OH) Northeast Mall 18 + XD (Hurst, TX) Cuyahoga Falls + XD (Cuyahoga Falls, OH) Share this:TweetShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading... Related Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYou must be logged in to post a comment.