Film #4: A GIRL WALKS HOME ALONE AT NIGHT
A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night
3 out of 5 stars
Follow me on this one… With A GIRLS WALKS HOME ALONE AT NIGHT, we have an American-made (filmed in Taft, CA) vampire film shot in high-contrast black and white where all of the dialog is in Farsi. Still with me? Ok. A GIRL WALKS HOME… is an oddly satisfying mix of a romantic vampire thriller, Spaghetti Western, comic graphic novel, and 1950's rebel flick while still making some pointed statements regarding the role of Muslim women. The film is slowly-paced but its filmmaker is self-assured enough to let the audience stew in a scene, letting long sequences play out in total silence. Director/Writer Ana Lily Amirpour lets the audience settle into the story like a hot bath as she tells the tale of a female vampire hunting a small Iranian town. You really have to pay attention to this one to fully understand what’s going on. Characters come and go and it’s sometimes difficult to keep things straight. Luckily, the visuals – all beautiful black & white with deep shadows and a masterful understanding of light –keep you entertained while you’re scratching your head over the plot. Worth seeing, but… this is one of those films you really should watch alone (or with only a few quiet others) as things are laid out very subtly and the narrative is very ‘slow burn.’ That all said… there are some really terrific moments here (especially if you love B&W like I do). Fun, but not perfect, A GIRL WALKS HOME AT NIGHT is a fascinating experiment and worth checking out as long as you don’t have an issue with slow films.