Friday, August 30, 2019

Short Film: Shadowglade

This is a 35-minute film from 2015, directed by Ezra Peace, which takes the buddy cop theme along with urban fantasy and merges them into what is, essentially, a pilot with a lot more story to go.

It begins in a car and cop Alex (Danny Klapadoras) is using a squeaky grip strengthener whilst suggesting that partner Ethan (Salvatore Verini) is too quiet – when Ethan is reading. He also suggests that Ethan should drink some of his *special juice* and clearly (as we discover the secrets of these two) that juice would be blood.

in car
Alex is eating a dog biscuit when a car drives by and he smells pot. Blue lights on and they are in pursuit. The car pulls over and as the cops approach, still bickering slightly, Alex smells a body in the trunk. The two gang members open fire on the cops. Checking on their victims they find the bodies gone, and then Alex and Ethan reappear and suddenly have the bad guys by the neck. Alex kills the one he has hold of by breaking his neck. Ethan questions why, he would have compelled them, and then compels the other to shoot his friend's corpse (once it is placed back in the car) and then kill himself. The gunshots attract other cops and the two (obviously, vampire and werewolf) drive away from the scene, intent on getting some food.

Erica and Alex
Ethan sends Alex to get a steak sub (rare) and Alex, for a laugh, has garlic put on it, which causes his partner to choke. Then a call comes in about the murder and they return to the scene. The case has been given to a detective from the sheriff’s office, Erica (Val Simpson), and he realises that she is a witch. The CSI guy has noticed that the bullet wounds are post-mortem in one of the victims of the alleged murder/suicide and, when they discover that the body in the trunk works for the police, Ethan compels him to bring evidence to him first.

uncovering clues with magic
When this doesn’t happen (unbeknown to them the CSI guy gets murdered) they break into Erica’s house to try and see what information she has uncovered – however the man in the trunk was killed by Satanists (for his tattoo, which has occult significance) and the three have to start working together to try and get to the bottom of the case. They also have to work with a priest (Michael Kantor), who is part of a secret militant church order that hunt down supernaturals.

Michael Kantor as the priest
So, the lore we do get is sparse but we know that garlic chokes, that vampires are physically superior, that holy water boils if a vampire gets too close to it (but they can go in churches). Silver incapacitates a vampire but wood will kill if it pierces the heart. The short also uses vervain in its lore, which either pushes the story into the world of the Vampire Diaries or it indicates a spread of one of the long running series' tropes into the wider lore.

The acting is sporadic with some good moments marred by some more amateurish moments – but to be fair most of the cast are in their first (filmed) vehicle. That given they did quite well. However the lack of conclusion (this is absolutely open-ended) is a tad frustrating.

The imdb page is here.

On Demand @ Amazon US

On Demand @ Amazon UK

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