NIGHTSTREAM FILM FESTIVAL 2020 REVIEW! I went into Alister Grierson’s Bloody Hell, with relatively little information or expectations. The film happens to be an incredible a**-kicker from start to finish, so I’m glad I saw the film’s name and thought, “this might be cool.” It turns out I was right!
Rex (Ben O’Toole) is ex-military, living in Boise, Idaho. He’s in line at the bank, trying to make sure he gets to go to the teller Maddy (Ashlee Lollback), as he has a crush on her. Not too long after he gets to her window, a group of masked bank robbers enters the building. Rex fights against them and ends up killing or wounding all the robbers. Due to an unfortunate setback during Rex’s heroics, he is awarded eight years in prison for his good efforts.
When he gets out, he wants nothing more than to get the hell out of Boise. While in prison, he blows a spitball at a map, and it lands on Finland. This is where he goes after he picks up his stuff from his local bartender, Pete (Joshua Brennan). While Rex is at the airport, a middle-aged couple (Matthew Sunderland and Caroline Craig) creepily stares at him, and another man tells Rex that they said in Finnish, “we’re going to get him for our son.” It turns out they weren’t kidding, and the next time we see Rex, he is tied up by his arms in a spooky basement.
“Due to an unfortunate setback…he is awarded eight years in prison for his good efforts.”
There’s not much more I can divulge about the plot without ruining the fun of Bloody Hell. Just know that it is as if Rambo was in Midsommar. The action is non-stop, there are some amazing kill sequences, and it just so happens to be pretty hilarious. It helps that Rex has a habit of talking to himself. We often see two Rex’s arguing about what they’re going to do next. Ben O’Toole is great as the action anti-hero. Caroline Craig is wonderful as a Mrs. Voorhees adjacent psychopath, and Meg Fraser is fantastic as someone much more than just a love interest.
Bloody Hell is one of the more action-packed horror thrillers I’ve seen and is a fun watch. I know it’s cheesy to say this, but I seriously was on the edge of my seat during some parts. The pace is fast, the stakes are high, and we feel ourselves in Rex’s very unfortunate shoes, thanks to a wonderful script by Robert Benjamin. The editing by Benjamin and Alister Grierson is impeccable and helps craft a fantastic visual story to go with the script. I know I haven’t given you much to go on as far as what to expect, but I think that’s the best way to go into Bloody Hell. Just know you’re about to get taken on a thrilling ride where you will have a bloody hell of a good time.
Bloody Hell screened as part of the 2020 Nightstream Film Festival.
"…we often see two Rex's arguing about what they're going to do next"