Director(s) – Jakob Bilinski (Shade of Grey), P.J. Starks (Hallows Eve: Slaughter on Second St.), Lee Vervoort (The Truck), Nathan Thomas Milliner (A Wish for the Dead), and John Kenneth Muir
Starring – Kristine Renee Farley (Kill, Granny, Kill!), Jason Crowe (Easter Casket), and Jim O’Rear (Camp Massacre)
Release Date – 2015
Rating – 4/5
Tagline – “Some libraries make a killing”
2015 looks like an amazing year for indie horror with several spectacular releases set to be released sometime this year. Several films are coming out that span several sub-genres. This year you can expect to see the filmsHunters, Steve: Death Collector, Gutterballs 2, Neon Doom, Her Name was Torment 2: Agony, and Volumes of Blood.
Volumes of Blood is an anthology film featuring segments from 5 different directors. The film looked fun as hell so I reached out to director P.J. Starks about it and he was kind enough to send me a review copy of the film along with a link to the short film “Preylude” which is, as you might have guessed, a prelude to the film. Thanks P.J. for allowing me the chance to check it out!
**Spoiler Alert**The film follows four college students who are sitting in the library trying to come up with an urban legend that they can spread across campus. The four start bouncing ideas off each other. The first potential urban legend follows a young lady who is spending an all nighter in the library and is approached by a man asking her to check out a brand new energy drink. She tries and immediately realizes that it tastes horrible but that is just the tip of the iceberg. Soon she starts to sweat and not long after she explodes.
The second story follows a young man working in the library who keeps finding a strange book on the ground and other places throughout the library. Every time he puts it up he turns around to find it somewhere else. After sometime he discovers the supernatural reasons behind it.
The third potential legend follows a young woman who is studying in the library and is approached by her sleazy boyfriend. He convinces her to have a shot and moments later passes out. She awakens to find herself in the library but she is not alone. A beast is lurking down each isle and has it’s sights turned to her.
The fourth tale follows another librarian who finds a strange book on the occult and decides to use it to resurrect her ex-boyfriend who recently killed himself after she dumped his ass. The spell works and he comes back from the dead with vengeance on his mind. The four reflect on all the stories told before one decides to make his own in their blood and we are given an even bigger twist with an unexpected turn.**Spoiler Alert**
I have seen so many anthologies in my day with some having amazing concepts while others fail to deliver anything other than random shitty stories strung together with random idea. However, I feel the perfect way to make an anthology fun is to tie all the stories together in some aspect. Creepshow had the Creep, V/H/S has the VHS angle, Hi-8 used a similar fashion with 8mm, and Volumes of Blood used a very unique angle offering up hypothetical situations before actually unleashing the real horror. They also used an amazing way of tying all the segments together that works very well for an anthology.
The acting in this one is superb by the entire cast. It is common for an indie production to have cast consisting of members with various degrees of experience and backgrounds making for a film that is inconsistent. However, VoB has an amazing cast that delivers amazing performances from beginning to end. I honestly believe this film would not have been this fun if it did not include this cast.
The stories for this one is nothing new with the exception of the wrap around story. Each segment features your standard horror fairs with nothing new to offer. With that being said, they are done in a different style giving them a rather different approach to something we have already seen countless times before in horror. What each segment lacks in originality they more than make up for with delivery.
Finally, the film is filled with beautiful on screen kills that are bloody and gory. The kills are not that original but they are brutal and relentless. The film also has some great practical effects that make the kills even more sweeter. Overall, Volumes of Blood is one fine indie film. It has some real bite which is rare when it comes to an anthology. This is how a fucking anthology film should be so check it out and take note. I recommend this one over and over.