UK Release Date: 22nd January 2018
Runtime: 83 minutes
Director: Griff Furst
Writer: Griff Furst, Jack Snyder
Starring: Josh Stewart, Christopher Lloyd, Frank Whaley, Candy Clark, Chester Rushing, Robbie Kay
Synopsis: When a pregnant young woman is found murdered, a chain of supernatural revenge is brought upon the killer, but that doesn’t stop the body count rising.
The most interesting thing about Cold Moon is that it features a cameo from Tommy Wiseau. The creator of The Room appears in one scene at a rodeo event, seemingly as some sort of snake-charmer, for no apparent reason. Other than that, this is a rather bland and unimaginative horror movie with ropey CGI effects and a plot that takes itself incredibly seriously, without even attempting to deliver as much as a single narrative surprise or storytelling flourish.
It begins with the murder of a young woman by a masked figure on a bridge above a very shallow-looking river. The girl’s hysterical mother Evelyn (Candy Clark) immediately points the finger of blame at local banker Nathan (Josh Stewart), who is the son of company director James Redfield (Christopher Lloyd). Local sheriff Ted Hale (Frank Whaley) investigates the case, though it’s not long before the killer becomes plagued by the ghosts of those who he has killed and the body count continues to rise.
This is a horror movie lacking any sort of sense of surprise. The story threads are established fairly early on and they continue to progress along their established routes right up until the credits roll. There isn’t even a flicker of a plot twist, with events moving forward exactly as you’d expect. Josh Stewart’s central performance is interesting and it would be enough to power a better movie, but here it’s not even close to succeeding.
Cold Moon is based on a novel written by the author of the Beetlejuice screenplay and, therefore, boasts considerable genre credentials. Unfortunately, it’s there that the genre savvy begins and ends. There are some reasonably well-executed jump scares littered throughout the film, but director Griff Furst is too often content to just stick a creepy face in the corner of the shot, often realised through exceptionally cheap-looking CGI. He also wastes Christopher Lloyd who, despite top billing, gets just a handful of scenes and is nowhere near the unsettling genre genius he managed in I Am Not a Serial Killer.
This entire movie simply feels like a missed opportunity. It’s a slow-motion trudge through genre clichés of all varieties that culminates in a disappointing and thoroughly by-the-numbers finale that limps towards a final scare without any narrative punch. Furst’s movie squanders every scene and story element imaginable in order to produce a languid journey through a fantasy world that has plenty going on, but still manages to be as boring as a Sunday afternoon spent discussing old newspaper clippings with the old man from Up.
Nothing on the disc I had for review.
Pop or Poop?
It boasts an enviable roster of bona fide genre figures in its cast and crew, but that doesn’t prevent Cold Moon from being a tedious and unenjoyable slog. This is a movie that tries to take itself and its material seriously, but also features a wink-nudge cameo for the most recognisable figure in the world of bad movies. That tells you everything you need to know.
Do you agree with my review? Let me know in the comments section.
Cold Moon is available on DVD in the UK now, courtesy of Bulldog Film Distribution.