With all that being said, let me make it abundantly clear that Bloodthirsty is an excellent production overall. For one, the story has some interesting twists and turns, one being easier to guess than the other. Of course, no spoilers, but each one is well earned, makes total sense, and ups the stakes in a very real, intense way. That happens because the script, minus the first few minutes, is very good. Grey’s struggles to trust herself and figure out what’s real and what isn’t is well explored and generates a lot of sympathy. Charlie’s devotion to Grey and her encouragement to help her any way she can feels genuine. Vaughn is fantastically creepy but does coax some excellent songs out of the young artist, so even he is not one-dimensional.
Moses directs with an assured eye, creating a foreboding atmosphere out of something as simple as a recording booth. The lighting and cinematography help immeasurably with that, as each scene in Vaughn’s mansion is gorgeous and tension-filled. Throughout Bloodthirsty recurring colors such as red or stark white provide subtle visual clues as to what might be taking place without ever spelling it out.
“…high on the creep factor…”
As Grey, Lauren Beatty is tasked with a lot. She has to sing, feel insecure and confused, be inspired to write a new song, be in love, and act feral in her hallucinations. Beatty absolutely nails it and creates a character viewers like and root for, even when she makes questionable decisions. Katharine King So is also great as Charlie and the two actors share lovely chemistry. If Vaughn were simply a mad monster of a man, without any charm or possible redeeming qualities, nothing about the narrative would work. But Greg Bryk is excellent as the mysterious and odd music producer. The way he encourages the vegan Grey to have just a little bite of the steak he’s eating is both unsettling and somehow engaging at once.
If you were to rewrite the first five minutes of Bloodthirsty and left everything else the exact same, you’d have a perfect movie. As it stands, thanks to atmospheric directing, mostly good writing, and a brilliant cast, you have a very good one that is high on the creep factor populated with likeable, engaging characters.
"…the story has some interesting twists and turns..."