Liz: 4(+0.5??) out of 5 stars

A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014) is a black-and-white horror romance film directed by Ana Lily Amirpour (Iranian-American FEMALE director ahhh!!!) and stars Sheila Vand, Arash Marandi, Marshall Manesh, Domnic Rains, Mozhari Marno, and Rome Shadanloo. Omar and I have been wanting to see this movie for awhile now since we first saw the trailer a few months ago. Though I was left wanting a bit more from this movie, it was a really fun, fascinating watch and I’m excited to see what new films Amirpour has in store for the future!

Quick summary: (ooooo this might be a difficult one to write) In the Iranian town named ‘Bad City,’ the townspeople are stalked by a silent, strange and violent female vampire. There is romance, action, mystery, death!

This movie was remarkable to me right away because of how it was shot. Black-and-white movies coming out these days always grab my attention, and further than that, the cinematography was just beautiful. Omar said that he thought the movie looked really “crisp-looking,” which, if I’m on the same wavelength as him, I agree with. I absolutely love how the camera would especially focus on particular individual object and just that object. Examples: earrings on a table, a fish tank/aquarium, a spoon stirring tea, etc. I can’t find good stills to show y’all so you’ll just have to take my word for it. But here’s a gif anyway that kind of encapsulates how I love how the camera focused in on things:

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The soundtrack of this movie was also really great. It offset that whole “horror” genre label assigned to this movie and made it kind of feel almost like an 80s movie? I don’t know if that makes sense, but I really appreciated it. There’s this really awesome scene where the female vampire is in her room alone dancing. Here’s a bit of the soundtrack here:

Also I’ll take this time to mention how the main character Arash looks strikingly like James Dean which I love:

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The overall atmosphere of the movie was another favorite part. There was just this air of mystery, particularly around the female vampire. The movie never really gives her an agenda or anything so you’re left just wondering who she is — is she evil? is she just a girl looking for love? is she a creepy stalker? maybe she’s all of that. This movie reminds me a lot of that one vignette in Paris Je T’Aime, also black and white and featuring a vampire and has Elijah Wood (who also produced this film coincidentally). I loved the feel of it and I appreciated how all the characters weren’t totally freaked out that there was a vampire– it was just kind of normal almost.

Now for what I didn’t like too much about the movie: As the movie progressed, I could grasp what was happening. I’m trying to keep this spoiler free so I’ll just say that certain things happened, and they weren’t too mind-blowing or anything. I got what happened physically in that scene. However, at the end, there wasn’t any “deeper” meaning or great connections made for any of the events that happened. Things just happened and that was it — there wasn’t anything more. I felt like I was scratching for something with greater meaning and at the end I was just like “wait what… WHAT DOES IT MEAN?!” I guess it doesn’t mean anything, weird shit just happens, especially when vampires are involved. Maybe I’ve been watching too many of those surprise-ending movies so I was expecting more than this movie had to offer.

Overall,  I definitely recommend watching this! I’m on a mission to watch more movies directed by women, particularly those of color so I’m glad I got to add this to my list of movies watched for 2015.

Upcoming reviews: Mr. Nobody (2009).

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