Family Blood

20181 h 32 min

Ellie, a recovering drug addict, has just moved to a new city with her two teenage children. She has struggled to stay sober in the past and is determined to make it work this time, finding a stable job and regularly attending her meetings. Unfortunately, new friends, a new job, and the chance of a new life, can’t keep Ellie from slipping once again. Her life changes when she meets Christopher – a different kind of addict – which forces her daughter and son to accept a new version of Ellie.

Director Sonny Mallhi
Runtime 1 h 32 min
Release Date 16 March 2018

Family Blood – it’s your average, struggling, single mother-drug-addict-turned-vampire story. A young woman struggles to cope with past drug addiction in an effort to raise her two teenage children, only to have another problem dropped in her lap – unwillingly becoming a “child of the night”, desperately seeking blood and killing anything that gets in her way. It doesn’t take long for her children to realize there’s something wrong with their mother, and once they discover the truth, they have to decide how to live with their blood-sucking mom. This story is very odd and doesn’t feel like a complete horror movie, but it does star Vinessa Shaw (Hocus Pocus) whose acting is quite good.

Like the zombie movies that don’t like to use the word ‘zombie’, I don’t recall this movie ever using the word ‘vampire’. I suppose this is done to keep the audience guessing, but I believe this is to disassociate the film from any judgmental predispositions your mind might jump to when you hear the word vampire in a movie. While once a term used only in horror films, the word now describes a slew of after school specials, teen romance films and other ridiculous forms of entertainment. Vampires have become the “old hat” of the horror world, and I believe the term was left out in order to separate this movie from anything prior and just make it about the horror. If true, I can respect that.

While the build up of suspense is good and the acting is very well done, I had concerns in the beginning that this was going to turn into more of a horror drama. While it’s not entirely a drama, it doesn’t feel like a total horror movie, either. Sure, some horrific things happen, but the main focus seems to be on how her kids react to her sudden transformation. I would have liked to see more of her stalking her prey at night, or what happens after the events of the final act. I can’t dismiss this as a bad movie but I can’t honestly recommend this as a horror movie either. The target audience for this film seems to be vampire fans who don’t like things to be too scary, and are simply interested in the story.

All in all, this movie feels more like a prequel or an origin story to a vampire horror movie, instead of a standalone vampire movie. I guess I can understand wanting to show the origins of a vampire, but this story wasn’t interesting enough to deserve its own movie. The woman was skipping her AA meeting to get high in a park and a vampire just walks up and drips his blood into her mouth and kills her, unprovoked. Apparently he targeted her from the AA meeting, but for what purpose? Is he cursed to create other vampires, or was he trying to build a colony of vampires from which to plot his overthrow of mankind? Either way, the dude vampire is killed by the son of the woman whom he just turned, so we don’t find out his story.

Oh, and what’s the deal with the rotten teeth?

This movie is…

Not very scary and doesn’t feel like a complete horror movie.

Cheers and goodnight.