HAWK & REV: VAMPIRE SLAYERS – Review by Liz Whittemore

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Manchild slacker Hawk is a very low-level security guard for an empty building. When he is convinced that he’s seen a trio of vampires next door, he calls in his pacifist hippie best friend to help him pursue the evil. After failing to fully enlist his former military prison inmate (jailed because he staked a fellow soldier with a 2X4), they run across a wannabe vampire genre writer and they invite her to join the ragtag crew.

Funnily enough, there is most definitely a vampire on the loose. Some of the film’s funniest sequences happen sporadically throughout the film. A gym bro, a surfer dude, a couple… let’s say “necking”, all get viciously attacked in an alley.

For most of the film, Hawk and Rev are essentially messing around, having ridiculous but oddly philosophical conversations. The montages are undeniably hilarious, and the practical FX elements are over the top. You cannot miss the spectacular soundtrack, either. Writer-director Ryan Barton-Grimley has really cultivated a cult film that knows exactly who its audience is. He and Ari Schneider are a perfect comedy duo. While Grimley is technically in more scenes, this film would not be nearly as funny without the fully realized performance from Schneider. Think John Heder in Napoleon Dynamite but more upbeat. I guffawed at so many of his individual beats, I lost count. It’s that good.

The writing is absurdly amusing. Just when you think a joke has run its course, think again. The quick take editing keeps you completely engaged. There is no denying Hawk and Rev is fun to watch. There is a reason it was both the opening and closing night “Midnight” showing at this year’s Dances With Films Festival. It’s a tongue-in-cheek, completely self-aware, homage to the 80s. If you’re a horror movie nerd like I am, you absolutely have a blast watching this film. The only thing missing is… well, nothing. Fingers crossed this is the beginning of a solid Hawk and Rev franchise.

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Liz Whittemore

Liz Whittemore

Liz Whittemore is the author of AWFJ's I SCREAM YOU SCREAM blog. She is Co-Managing Editor and writes for www.ReelNewsDaily.com, hosts the podcast Girls On Film and is a contributing writer for Cinemit.com and The ArtsWireWeekly. Now New York-based, she was born and raised in northern Connecticut. She's a graduate of The American Musical & Dramatic Academy, and has performed at Disneyland and famed Hartford Children's Theater, and been a member of NYC's Boomerang Theater, Connecticut's Simsbury Summer Theater, Virginia's Offstage Theatre, where she also directed. Her film credits include Suburban Skies and Surrender. In 2008, she shot Jabberwocky, a documentary now in post-production. Liz is still a children's theatre director and choreographer. She's working on an updated adaptation of Romeo and Juliet and a series of children's books.