Friday, 4 September 2015

A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night.

If you only see one Iranian vampire western this year, make sure it’s this one[1]. Based on an award winning short film with the same title, Ana Lily Amirpour’s[2] debut feature film A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014) is a darkly brooding atmospheric movie that emits menace in every frame, a modern day Spaghetti Western shot in stark black and little white, a film that also brings to mind Michelangelo Antonioni’s Red Desert (1964) and Robert Rodriguez’s Sin City (2005).
The James Dean lookalike Arash ....

....and The Girl.

A lone skateboarding female vampire stalks the nocturnal streets of the fictional Iranian town known as Bad City. A city haunted by its industrial past and surrounded by bobbing oil derricks, a city that reeks of death and despair, a city that would seem to have very few residents. One such resident is the James Dean lookalike Arash whose prize possession is a gleaming classic two-seater sports car. Others who make up the minimal characters who fill the long silent grainy shots are Arash’s junkie father, his prostitute and her heavily tattooed drug dealing pimp, all of whom have a series of encounters with the mysterious hijab clad bloodsucker. Although surprisingly The Girl is falling in love with Arash, which in turn may just spare his life?  
The prostitute....

....and her pimp.

Although set in Iran it was actually shot in Taft in Kern County, Southern California. The movie stars Arash Marandi as Arash, Sheila Vand, best known for her role in Ben Affleck’s Oscar winning 2013 movie Argo is ‘The Girl’ and Atti the Prostitute is played by Mozhan Marno who played Soraya M in The Stoning of Soraya M (2008). There is no doubt in this bloggers opinion Amirpour’s first feature film outing is a cult film in the making and will definitely stand the test of time with its memorable images[3], style and tone backed up by a brilliant soundtrack.[4]

[1] Movie Tagline.
[2] Ana Lily Amirpour was born in the UK of Iranian descent and has become a US resident.
[3] Incorporating  Fassbinder’s inventive use of mirrors.
[4] Available as a digital download.

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