Film Reviews

It Stains the Sands Red (2017) Review

Troubled Molly attempts to escape a zombie ridden Las Vegas but ends up alone in the desert with a hungry creature stalking her every move. Each frightening step leads her to both safety and the realization of what and who she’s really become. 

The cinematography and editing are worthy of praise without a doubt. In combination with the soundtrack, it made a for a visual feast of the grittier, non-Hollywood kind. The lead Brittany Allen (who also stars in the upcoming Jigsaw) made the entire experience of It Stains the Sands Red. Her performance was sincere, funny, and of a caliber that puts her up with other scream queens. Juan Riedinger as Smalls also killed it (punz) and I admire his ability to walk that slow. Pleased beyond a doubt with the casting. The gore factor is awesome as well. I won’t lie and say I didn’t hoot, holler, and cringe at that hand scene. The drill kill was a nice touch too. Nothing seemed hokey or corny either, and that in itself is such a relief for a lower radar film. It isn’t skinny in the horror department but a bit hefty with the problems in the script.

While the story of Molly is a heartfelt and emotional one, the overall script had way too many questions and nonsensical plot holes. Here’s a quick list:

  1. Why not put a car mat under the tire? These folks OBVIOUSLY aren’t from Ohio.
  2. Why would you leave your car door open after a zombie has been banging on your window for HOURS?
  3. How does it take multiple DAYS to walk 36 miles? That’s like 9-10 hours.
  4. How could she start a fire if there was NO WOOD in the desert?
  5. Sorry but the first day of your period is brutal; there would be WAY more blood on that tampon, especially after several hours.
  6. Why did they show one last cigarette in the pack, have her smoke it, and then she lights up ANOTHER one a later on?
  7. How did she manage to grab her phone from the truck after she was FORCIBLY removed from it?

I also couldn’t take the bait when it came to the relationship between the lead and the zombie. It hadn’t been that long that they were together- it was seriously two days. It only takes two days to develop sympathy and concern for this zombie who has been trying to eat you alive since day one? Nah. I get what the writers were going for and I appreciate that; this woman’s life was so shitty that she preferred the company of a dead man to every other garbage person she knew. The time frame just didn’t allow it to be a thing.

The zombie sub-genre has been over saturating our radars for a few years now but It Stains the Sands Red was the only one that managed to capture my attention. It was a tale of heartache and survival; and the concept was simple enough that it allowed for the story to shine through without making it or the blood seem out of place. Both components fit together without hindering either one. It’s a good watch alone or with friends, if you’re not nit picky about some apparent plot holes. Try to focus on the STORY and not the FILM, if that makes sense. Probably not, but you get it. Right?

 

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