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Review: Beau Yotty’s “Desert Wolf”

Beau Yotty and Lone Gunsligher Pictures are churning out independent movies featuring classic horror villains and I’ll keep coming back again and again so long as he keeps with this winning formula. Watching Desert Wolf was like watching an old Hammer Film set in the Wild Wild West, but let me give you some information on this flick before I really dive into this review. Desert Wolf was written and directed by Beau Yotty, and it follows Sheriff Garrett arriving on the scene of a supposed animal attack. When the creature descends from the darkness and fancies him as a late night snack, Garrett is left recovering from his injuries along with a small group of close friends. The daunting night doesn’t end there, as Garrett’s life is changed forever in a way he never thought possible, and he’s left wondering – could he be a predator preying on the residents of his city? And can he stop the terror before it’s too late? Now available on Amazon, video on demand and DVD, Desert Wolf stars Beau Yotty, Elizabeth Broeder, Dan Weisgerber, Hayley Vrana, John Carr, Mark DeBoer and Jewel Bradford.

Desert Wolf is your run of the mill werewolf flick that finds its hero surviving the clutches of the beast only to be burdened with the same curse as the one who attacked him. Although, as is Yotty’s style, there’s a little bit more magic to this story than you’re used to. Hello, added bonus. Desert Wolf is part horror, part science fiction and part drama, and it’s all set against the beautiful desert landscape that Lone Gunslinger Pictures always uses to its advantage. Coincidentally, the backdrop is the perfect venue to capture the essence of classic creature feature films, and the monsters of the 1940s and 1980s come alive in a homey, nostalgic narrative that’ll be a treat for old-school horror fans. Filled with typical werewolf troupes and a slew of interesting characters, it’s hard to say which film is my favorite – this one or Beau’s last picture, Unearthed: The Curse Of Nephthys. And, hey, that’s not a bad problem to have! This one is a little more retro than the other, but its story is pulled off slightly more successfully under an independent budget.

Desert Wolf was produced by Sandra Mateu. It features cinematography by Nathan Yotty. I have no complaints about the acting performances at all, but the production value leaves room to be desired. For starters, the audio is the weakest area and perhaps a new investment in proper recording equipment needs to be made. Second, some of the night shots were way too dark. Last, there were a couple rough cuts that I noticed. What does this mean for Desert Wolf? The villain, the story, the acting, the scenery and the style are enough to push this film to a passing grade, but unless you’re a fan of independent films, you may want to watch the trailer below and consider if this is the right choice for you. There are better werewolf flicks out there, but none of them are going to feel like a western drama with magic, guts, pride and primal evil. My advice to Beau and the rest of his crew is to just slow down. It must be wonderful getting to live your dream and produce movies, but it’s not about quantity, it’s about quality. I still dug this movie and all it has to offer, but I want to see the team getting better and better; not staying stagnant.

If anything else, this flick teaches you not to go jogging at night while wearing jeans.

Final Score: 7 out of 10.

Written by Michael Therkelsen

(Senior Editor)