Blackout – Fantasia 2023

Blackout Fantasia 2023
The latest entry of Larry Fessenden‘s Monster Trilogy has solid creature effects and gore, but horrendously bad acting and laughable dialogue.

Blackout – Fantasia 2023

Runtime: 01:43
A Fine Arts painter is convinced that he is a werewolf wreaking havoc on a small American town under the full moon.

A painter has to deal with the fact that he is a werewolf in . Charley Barrett () is a local painter in a small town in upstate New York, who many months ago separated from his ex Sharon () and is in frequent public battles with local developer, and Sharon's father, Jack Hammond (). Lately, there has been a series of grisly murders in the town and Hammond has been riling up the racist townsfolk to target Mexican immigrant Miguel () for the crimes. However, the truth is the real killer is Charley, who turns into the bloodthirsty werewolf under the full moon and is unable to remember the carnage he commits when he awakes the next day.

Blackout Synopsis

Blackout is a werewolf film written and directed by Larry Fessenden, completing his “Monster Trilogy” that also includes the 1997 vampire film Habit and the 2019 Frankenstein variation Depraved. The film stars Alex Hurt, the son of the late William Hurt, as Charley Barrett, an alcoholic painter tortured by the fact that he has been turning into a werewolf at night. After dropping off incriminated documents about developer Jack Hammond to local lawyer Kate (), Charley plans to enlist the help of his friend Earl () to kills himself with silver bullets before he kills someone he truly cares about.

My Thoughts on Blackout

Without a doubt, Larry Fessenden can be described as no less than an indie horror icon, not only as a director, but also as a producer (House of the Devil, Stake Land, Late Phases) and an actor (We Are Still Here, In a Valley of Violence, Brooklyn 45). Despite some obvious budget limitations, Blackout features some solid creature effects and gory violence and a very impressive sequence showing a flashback using oil-painted rotoscoping. However, Blackout is marred by some horrendously bad acting and laughable dialogue that would make The Room look like an Oscar winner. Not even cameos from horror icons Barbara Crampton (Re-animator) and Joe Swanberg (You're Next) could save Blackout from how cringeworthy it is at times. Of course, that would just make the film more fun to watch with a crowd.

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Sean Patrick Kelly
Sean Patrick Kelly
Sean Patrick Kelly is a freelance film critic and blogger based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.