Thursday, September 19, 2019

Blood Machines Lures Sailors In with Her Siren's Call: A Film Review

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*there are a few spoilers here.

Directors/writers: Raphaël Hernandez, Savitri Joly-Gonfard.

Cast: Elisa Lasowski, Anders Heinrichsen, Noémie Stevens, Christian Erickson.

Blood Machines is a film from directors: Raphaël Hernandez and Savitri Joly-Gonfard; collectively, they are known by the pseudoname Seth Ickerman. Together, they also created the visually stunning music video "Turbo Killer," with composer Carpenter Brut. Fans should view this video, to know how visually stunning Blood Machines actually is. In the story for Blood Machines, two scavengers target a ship and down it on a remote planet. On the surface, these two men encounter a demonic artificial intelligence, which they pursue to ghostly ships' graveyard. The film has a spiritual element, which is very dark in tone. The many upside down crosses might clue viewers into where this film is going (to hell). Meanwhile, this film fan was reminded of a few other films and music videos, while watching this one: Event Horizon (1997), musical artists Miami Nights and even Astron 6's Manborg (2011). Very artificial in environment, the synth track amplifies all of the action on-screen, making Blood Machines a must-see for horror fans.

To break down the story even more, Vascan (Anders Heinrichsen) and Lago (Christian Erickson) drop their ship down on Apus 7. On this remote planet, they prepare to break apart a ship that they have just shot down. However, their prey still has a few scavengers lingering about. Vascan, the Captain, goes down to investigate, while a ghost-like A.I. makes its presence known. Intrigued, Vascan and Lago pursue this shapely figure, straight into ship's graveyard, or as Lago states: "it's like a huge cemetery." These words could not be anymore prescient as this A.I. lures more and more characters into a blood ritual. No one will make it out of this burial ground.

The film, in this viewer's opinion, plays out very much like a spiritual allegory. In that, the film has a dark, underlining spiritual message, told with beautiful visuals. The many nude females can be distracting. But really, Vascan and Lago are being lured into a demonic trap. Out for salvage and a few easy dollars, Vascan finds himself caught in a sorceress' spell. Lured by his lusts, Vascan finds himself utilized as part of a blood sacrifice. His death and demonic possession further draws more men to their death. With Lago the only sympathetic character and Christian in the film; he is overcome by something that looks like his former shipmate. This one Christian is outnumbered by the horde of witches, spellcasters and ghosts - all roaming this demonic playground. If only there were a few more good souls, to resist the evil tide.

Just to give readers a better idea of what this film has in store for them, this film could be equated slightly to other media. This viewer was reminded of Paul W. S. Anderson's work on Event Horizon. In this earlier sci-fi film, an energetic space crew quickly finds themselves staring into a hellish abyss. Their warp drive has unwittingly opened a portal to hell. Equally in Blood Machines, a blood ritual opens another portal to this demonic lair. The many dancing sirens lead ever more space sailors to their doom. The visual style of Blood Machines is also similar to many of the retro wave or synth videos of recent years, like Miami Nights' work on "1984." In this music video and the film, all of the settings have been synthetically created, with bright lights and colours. As well, this film fan was reminded of Astron 6's work on Manborg. In both films, the settings are amplified to create stunning back drops. Meanwhile, the films have over-the-top villains and sequences. These former films and short films will give readers a better idea of what Blood Machines has in store for them. But, it would be best to watch the music video "Turbo Killer," to full understand what Seth ickerman (Hernandez, Joly-Gonfard) have summoned for them.

It was recently announced that Blood Machines would debut on Shudder, for subscribers in North America. Though, a release date has not been announced as of the writing of this review. This title is visually stunning and Carpenter Brut's synth track really amps up the tone of the film. This title is really a trip to a haunted house, set in a graveyard. The science fiction elements are just an added lair - to enhance the visual sphere. Overall, Blood Machines is an entertaining space ride into a hellish landscape. It just would have been better if there were a quality character or two added into the demonic mix. As it is, their is a lot of darkness here, especially as the character's finally realize what their final resting place is - hell!

Overall: 7 out of 10.

A trailer, for the film, was released earlier in the week and can be found here: A Blood Machines' Trailer on 28DLA

The music video for "Turbo Killer" will give folks a good idea of what the film has to offer: The Music Video Turbo Killer on Youtube

The film's official website: An Official Homepage for Blood Machines

Special thanks goes out to the staff at Quiet Earth, for providing the early screener of this title: A Quiet Earth Landing Page

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