Directed by David Tarleton.
Starring Nick Searcy, Shannon Brown, Adria Dawn, Rachel Cerda and Jason Kellerman.
Revered cage fighter Hunter (Jason Kellerman) is sleeping rough. Haunted by the murder of his mother and daughter he searches for solace, searches for answers and finds help in Danni (Rachel Cerda) counsellor at a nearby homeless shelter. Before long this safe haven brings back those denizens in the dark and Hunter must face down his demons…
Although not explicitly marketed as a vampire flick Hunter carries all the hallmarks including an effective central performance. Due to his measured screen presence and nuanced commitment throughout Hunter leaves its B movie origins behind, combining colour saturated dream sequences and solid writing to keep you engaged. For a majority of the running time Kellerman dominates by portraying a man of measured violence, hair trigger impulses and unrelenting loyalty.
Fighting for screen time alongside Kellerman is Rachel Cerda who manages to build a believable chemistry, exchange moments of real pathos and tie this movie together. A washed out colour palette and night shoots add another dimension, while Kellerman and Cerda breath life into Hunter by playing things straight. Where the film falls down is in those thinly drawn supporting roles which are never really fleshed or given much room to evolve. Nick Searcy might be the central villain but his limited involvement might have you thinking otherwise. Vague pronouncements of threat, clandestine kidnappings and vivid flashbacks which never feature him do nothing to allay those fears.
Effects wise Hunter has its fair share of claret which is thankfully spilled in context rather than for shock value. This anti hero undergoes some redemptive moments but Kellerman always keeps him the wrong side of squeaky clean which goes some way to improving the film. There are clever examples of subliminal cuts and dialogue is parred back making it a movie you really have to watch. Comparisons which spring to mind include Near Dark, Blade and to a certain degree Night Watch, but minus the latter’s audacious invention. There is a real sense of lose, a real sense of self and most importantly a strong thread of emotional realism which runs through Hunter that is worth witnessing. Pulsing with primal energy and anchored by a central performance of note this is worth catching on demand and across all digital platforms from February 12th.
Flickering Myth Rating – Film: ★ ★ ★ / Movie: ★ ★ ★