One theme that I keep seeing pop up throughout media is a person having to make a choice that is antithetical to their core beliefs in order to help out or even save a loved one. We see this in dramas on television such as Breaking Bad, even comedies like The Santa Clarita Diet, but it is a mainstay truly in the horror genre, in television such as The Walking Dead, but prominently in film. Horror has long put people in predicaments like this as the best way to strike fear is to get the viewer to empathize with the characters. And unless you are a complete hermit that has been alone since birth, we all have someone in our lives that we would do anything for. As a parent, that role goes to my children. And in AARON’S BLOOD, when his son’s life is in question, Aaron must truly tap into some questionable things in order to ensure the safety of his son.
Aaron is a phlebotomist working for a blood donation company as well as being a widower and single father following the untimely death of his wife. He’s trying his best to raise his son, Tate, who is growing more distant by the day. Tate is a hemophiliac that has the misfortune of being bullied as well. Seriously, life needs to give this kid a break. Sadly, that break came in the form of his nose, causing hemorrhaging and need for emergency surgery.
While in the ICU, Tate makes a miraculous recovery, but at a disturbing price. Not only is he a lot stronger than he was previously, he also doesn’t have a normal appetite and is super sensitive to the sun. Daddy’s little boy is becoming a vampire! With the help of a local vampire hunter, Aaron is doing his best to try to keep his son on the side of the light, by halting his transformation. The challenge with that is finding the vampire that started the process to begin with. Aaron is having to take to extreme methods to flush out the predator that is his prey and the process is rough on dear old dad.
The only real crime of this film is the over use of dream sequences. The sequences are filmed in the same fashion as the rest of the film, so it isn’t immediately obvious that is what they are. That in itself isn’t a problem, for when it’s used sparingly, can really affect the story and deliver a great scare. As these were used so frequently though, it became confusing as to what was real and what wasn’t, completely shaking me when one character was killed off but showed up later, as they were only killed in a dream.
Outside of that, the film flows rather smoothly, and gives us plenty of blood throughout. While not the most inventive vampire tale, it is nice to see some darkness and depth with our blood suckers, without it going cheesy or overly romanticized.
Tate, played by Trevor Stovall, resembles a very young D.J. Conner from the ROSEANNE TV show. He is timid and shy, an easy target for the bullies, but it is nice to the transformation affect his personality as well as physically. His performance isn’t flawless, but he does a great job of being able to add intimidation through his body language despite his small frame. And Aaron, played by James Martinez, does a wonderful job playing the strained father trying to just do the right thing.
AARON’S BLOOD will be available in theaters June 2nd, and On Demand and Digital HD on June 6th from Gravitas Ventures.
DIRECTOR: Tommy Stovall (HATE CRIME, SEDONA)
WRITER: Tommy Stovall
CAST: James Martinez (House of Card, RUN ALL NIGHT), Trevor Stovall (HATE CRIME, SEDONA), Farah White (MISS CONGENIALITY, THE LADIES OF THE HOUSE), Michael Chieffo (Roswell, LA CONFIDENTIAL)