“Till the end of your life, I’ll be watching you. Understand?” said the girl who walks home alone at night.
Ana Lily Amirpour showed the world a bold exclamation mark—that Iranian cinema got a thoughtful vision not to be taken for granted. In her debut, A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, the director combines genre beauties of spaghetti western and elements of noir film into a highly-stylized vampire genre—the first one in Iran.
Set in a fictional ghost town in Iran they always refer as Bad City, a hipster-vampire girl wandered around every night as she watched over people around the city. There’s not a lot of things happened along movie and there’s less and less resolution as well; not even until the girl (portrayed by Sheila Vand) accidentally found love in Arash (Arash Marandi), some random guy who ironically dressed in Dracula costume.
Shot in black and wait and often devised long shot, the film uniquely captured the creepy and sometimes campy nuance in a sense that it’s not a pure horror film. Only the original idea and Sheila Vand’s impressive portrayal of the feminist vampire can top the striking visuals that almost overwhelm all points in the film. All in all, this is a kind of film that has been there all the time, but in the end, it’s finally filmed just like it is. Kudos to Ana Lily Amirpour.
VERDICT: This is, by far, the most groundbreaking cinematic visions from Iran—the story is as enigmatic as the ideas, yet the implementation of spaghetti western an noir film elements to vampire genre is definitely a poignant touch.
A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014)
Horror, Thriller Written & Directed by: Ana Lily Amirpour Starred by: Sheila Vand, Arash Marandi Running Time: 101 mins Unrated