Starring Kristine Renee Farley, Jim O’Rear, Jason Crowe
Directed by Jakob Bilinski, P.J. Starks, Nathan Thomas Milliner, John Kenneth Muir, Lee Veervort
I always thought that the biggest menaces in a school library were either the heinous looks you got from some craggish old librarian who’s age has made her eligible for a seat on the Jedi Council, or the lethal amounts of dust that have accumulated on the books that never got checked out – boy was I wrong!
Volumes Of Blood, a little indie horror anthology filmed in good ol’ Owensboro, Kentucky, has all the right bits in place to entertain the horror masses – it pokes fun at itself in numerous instances, scares in others, and splashes around the crimson in buckets. With the directorial efforts of 5 different souls, the movie begins its descent into madness in a college library, where interestingly enough all the tales are set – simple enough. When a class discussion on urban legends starts to arouse some curiosities, a group of 4 friends meet up at the bookracks to try and scare the bejeezus out of each other with their made up stories. So sit down, shut up and pay attention to this conglomeration of tales that border on paranormal, madness, false advertising, and late fees…just kidding, but check this out anyway.
First up is “A Little Pick Me Up” – a nearly exhausted student is wracking her brains in preparation for an essay that’s due in the morning, and her salvation comes in a new energy drink that promises to “blow her mind”, offered up by a shady salesman in a suit and sunglasses – the results will make the gorehounds howl – overall fun in its simplicity.
Tale #2 is “Ghastly” – a lonely library attendant just can’t seem to shake a book on ghosts that has appeared in the repository, and with the help of some pretty spooky images, this one manages to provide a little satisfaction, although it does, for such a short-running story, rely on too much down time. Understandable structure, with the notion of build up, but a little lackluster in its conclusion.
The third yarn is “13 After Midnight” – and with a return to simplistic storytelling, we’ve got a bookish female scrambling to get some work done, and her booze-swilling, borderline-douche man-friend trying in vain to pick her up. As the hours tick away, that’s when the monster visits…or a sasquatch…or an overgrown Ewok.. good for the creature-feature fans, but this one left me a little empty inside – nice twist ending, however.
The final story is by far the most visually appealing one of the bunch – “Encyclopedia Satanica” (gotta love the name) – taking place on Halloween night, a librarian attempts to catalogue something reminiscent to “The Book of The Dead” – no idea of how it got there, or who may have dropped it off. She is soon visited by a creepy figure who she may have known once in life, and with the distant camera shots which depict a feeling of abandonment and loneliness both inside and outside of the building, this one was a well-crafted short.
As the movie wound down, the final installment, which was actually the wrap around story of the students telling spooky tales, is revealed to be a movie in itself, being shot by a pompous director (P.J. Starks) who frankly, stole the entire segment. His never-ending search for the perfect movie, and relentless badgering of his employees will make you laugh out loud, and when the crew finds themselves in a fight for their own lives from a demented killer, the movie takes on an almost set-aside project in its own right, and all parties involved should be proud of what they’ve produced.
In the end, these Volumes Of Blood are some that I’d most assuredly take the chance of renting from my local athenaeum and never returning, and aside from a few slow paced issues, this one is worth a look, but please remain QUIET when using the media room!