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By Michael Talbot-Haynes | September 8, 2023

I have been hip to these pictures since the incredible Woman, Thou Art Loosed and have constantly been impressed how they depict the real ugly problems in life folks deal with regularly. The grueling ordeal of addiction is splayed open and hung up on a gruesome display. The pacing is brisk, with lots of realistic obstacles introduced in the most riveting way. The cinematography by Paul Arambula is outstanding, with vivid compositions and spectacular lighting that makes everything look like a million bucks. Ironically enough, the biblical sermon at the center is exciting past beliefs.

Walker actually stages the battle of Shamgar with real actors in elaborate costumes in snow, Herzog style. The fight scenes are jaw-dropping. While the main narrative follows the traditional melodrama favored by female audiences, these wildly intense sequences will excite their male counterparts. Each time I thought that the director must have exhausted his resources by now, another fight sequence ensued. Once again, I underestimated the possibilities of what a maverick indie filmmaker can pull together.

“…well done all.”

The performances throughout Guardians are all very memorable, especially the leads. Rodriguez does some intense physical acting to delve deep into the mire to show how far a soul can descend. McIntyre carries herself with an unself-conscious poise that you don’t see often. As of this writing, Eric Roberts has a record holding 666 acting credits on IMDB. Don’t worry; this is one of 81 upcoming projects he has coming out to get him away from numerical Iron Maiden territory. Also, what a pleasure to catch Armstrong in her feature debut. I pity anyone who didn’t immediately recognize her from Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. What horrible lives you must lead.

I also approve of the understated way the guardian angel concept is handled. It was a lot different from the way other pictures have. Guardians literally has something in its basket for all tastes, even if it isn’t your church that is throwing the picnic. I look forward to seeing Walker’s next features. Later in the film, Brittan says that some of the greatest art comes from the pain of life. That is absolutely the case here, well done all.

For screening information, visit the Guardians official website.

Guardians (2023)

Directed and Written: Rick Walker

Starring: Eric Roberts, Taylor Armstrong, Cherish Rodriguez, Mackenzie McIntyre, Wil Wilson, Samantha Radcliffe, Lou Renova, Clint McGown, etc.

Movie score: 8.5/10

Guardians Image

"…I underestimated the possibilities of what a maverick indie filmmaker can pull together."

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  1. CG says:

    Walker did not write, produce, or direct the Shamgar sequences. That was a separate short film named Hold the Pass. Just want to make sure that cast and crew is properly recognized.

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