Saturday, November 10, 2012

Film Review: Shadowland (a Mom Cats Reviews First)

Shadowland SYNOPSIS

A taut reinvention of vampire lore, Shadowland opens in modern day North America, where construction workers uncover an old stone cross and what appears to be a wooden stake. They remove the stake from the ground, allowing Laura (Caitlin McIntosh), a  slumbering vampire, to revive and rise from the earth. Beaten and weak, Laura is unable to speak, remember who she is, or even the fact that she is a vampire!

As Laura attempts to make sense of the strange new world around her, she begins to remember not only an idyllic human life in 1897 but the handsome Lazarus (Carlos Antonio León), a mysterious lover who may not have had her best interests in mind. Soon Julian (Jason Contini), a world-weary vampire hunter employed by the church, begins tracking Laura, but as he closes in for the kill he learns  that things are not what they seem.

An ambitious, award-winning indie feature, Shadowland relies on  character, tension, and a series of reveals to tell the tragic story of an anti-heroine.


Shadowland Review: 

It’s unfair to judge a low budget film production in the same manner as you would a major Hollywood release. With that said, the production values are great, knowing what they spent. Some of the exterior shots, such as the night time bridge scene with Julian staring pensively over the river, were beautiful. The editing seemed seamless, and the special effects were better than I expected.

I liked the overall story because it was an original take on the vampire legend. The main characters, Julian played by Jason Contini (credits include eight feature films) and Laura played by Caitlin McIntosh (Hooters’ International Girl of the Year-2007 and Mrs. Missouri-2009), were well developed within the confines of the story.

Knowing that the production was filmed in the St. Louis area, with many recognizable landmarks, was one area in which the excellent editing showed. I was able to suspend my disbelief as a St. Louisan who knows that the Pageant Theater and Spencer’s Grill are eleven miles apart, and accept that they are on the same block.

The dialog was a little stilted in places. Some of the language formality in the flashback scenes was expected. However, some of the present day language of Julian and some of the supporting characters could have been more relaxed.  However, the dialog did not detract from my enjoyment of the film which is not dialog driven.

Shadowland, straight out of what must be the slightly twisted but talented writer-director Wyatt Weed’s mind receives 4.5 out of 5 stars. 

Find out more about Shadowland, or the St. Charles based production company at:

Reviewer received a complimentary copy of Shadowland from Pirate Pictures.

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