Quirky horror comedies never get old for me, particularly those with unique premises. If a film can make me laugh and squirm while still entertaining me, then it’s a big win. Such is the case with BLOOD CAR, a 2007 title that poses question, “To what lengths will we (as a society go) to drive when gas becomes too expensive?” Part terrifying and part hysterical, this film will make you reevaluate the way you think about your car and its fuel economy.
If you are not familiar with BLOOD CAR, here is the plot synopsis courtesy of Kino Lorber:
In the all-too-foreseeable future, gas prices approach $40 a gallon, causing some Americans to abandon their vehicles and others to seek alternate sources of fuel. When a mild-mannered schoolteacher (Mike Brune) invents an experimental engine that thrives on blood, he attracts the attention of two women who vie for his affection: Denise (Katie Rowlett), the proprietress of a butcher stand, and Lorraine (Anna Chlumsky) who runs a rival veggie stand in a grim urban landscape. But Archie’s need for speed soon surpasses his body’s ability to regenerate fluids, so he takes desperate measures to satisfy the Blood Car’s thirst. Veering between wicked social satire and outbursts of hardcore gore, BLOOD CAR lives up to its reputation as an “audacious utterly bonkers and downright sick claret-drenched black comedy” Time Out London.
I love how this film provides a dark social commentary in addition to its gory premise. I read several subtle undertones in the plot line, including teenage rebellion, our education system, societal perceptions of lifestyle choices, in addition to others. When a movie can make you think this much and still provide a lot of fun, you know you have a winner on your hands.
BLOOD CAR is a lower-budget film, but it is shot well and looks good overall. The production crew does a great job of utilizing their budget, and the result is an aesthetically-pleasing film with great sound.
The acting in BLOOD CAR is top notch, with Mike Brune, Anna Chlumsky, and Katie Rowlett portraying the three main characters. Brune does a great job as the oblivious, love-sick teacher, while Chlumsky and Rowlett shine as his two “love interests.” I am not familiar with Brune or Rowlett, however I’ve enjoyed Chlumsky as an actress since I saw her way back in the day, in MY GIRL.
The special effects in the film are minimal but good as well. There’s not a lot of carnage, but we do get a dose of nice gore here and there. Of particular note is when a government agent gets shoved into the trunk of the car (which is where the Blood Car “mulches” its victims for their blood), and a spectacular crimson fountain erupts when the car is started. Additionally, there are a couple of gore-soaked shots of the device itself inside the trunk that look great.
BLOOD CAR is a major win for me, and I recommend it to anyone looking for some gory, quirky fun. The disc contains a few Special Features that include the theatrical trailer for BLOOD CAR, as well was two short films from the same production company: THE ADVENTURE and THE $100 SHORT SHORT. BLOOD CAR is available now in a variety of formats, so give it a look.