Alison Hodges’s review published on Letterboxd:
Dreaming Purple Neon is the newest splatter epic from director Todd Sheets. Let me begin by saying that I had seen pics posted on Facebook and the trailer, both seemed pretty cool. Everything about this film has an old school vibe going on, and that truly is a good thing. What I like about this film is, it has that feeling of my teenage years renting old Horror movies on VHS, but it is still original and has it’s own story to tell without ripping off those same older films.
For many horror fans, the nineteen eighties was a massive time for horror flicks. The VHS video rental stores were everywhere, and films like Dreaming Purple Neon populated these stores and really helped them thrive. It was a simpler time for home entertainment. In some ways, a much better time. And in many ways, Dreaming Purple Neon is a much better movie than many of those old VHS tapes that inspired it. Even the movie poster and the DVD cover remind me of those old classics. I recall grabbing a few movies every weekend from the local video store, hoping I would witness a universe of unparalleled scares, depravity and gore. Many times the movies never lived up to the covers or the teaser trailers. This movie does. As a matter of fact, this movie may be the one film that I can say comes the closest to filling the spot. The movie I had always dreamed of finding in those old VHS stores. Only it’s kind of better than that. For one thing, it has a good story to tell with some pretty good characters. It’s not just splatter and gore with no reason.
This movie really does push the limits of good taste, but it does so in a fun, inventive way. It is never cruel or mean spirited. It gets right down to business, letting the crazy flow freely, like opening up a vein and just letting the blood run where it may. It seems as if Writer / Director Todd Sheets refused to allow any censorship of any kind while writing the script. He pushes boundaries at every turn and when he reaches the edge, not only does he jump over it, he eliminates it with style and a manic energy that outshines his low budget. He never follows the expected formula and just when you think “He’ll never go there.” Todd Sheets not only goes there, but shoves your face in it and laughs as he breaks the taboos over and over again. If you think you’ve seen some crazy, roller coaster, horror, gore satanic films before, I promise you, nothing beats this one!!!!
To try and give a full plot synopsis would be to ruin this movie. There are twists and turns all over and part of the fun is just going along for this wild ride. At the basis is a guy named Dallas who comes back to his old hometown to get his old girlfriend Denise and make amends for some past mistakes. When he gets there, some bad stuff is happening thanks to a drug known as Purple Neon ruling the streets and the bad guys who control it. But the drug is not really a drug at all, it is a chemical derived from demon blood that has connected every person who uses it to the Queen of Hell, and she can control them all like puppet zombie/demon things. Dallas and Denise get mixed up in all of it and soon it is a small group of people fighting against a bunch of villains and monsters. The first 20 minutes spend some time building the characters. There is still plenty of action as we find out just how vile the villains can be. The whole movie starts with a bang as we are introduced to Tyrone and Ray Ray, two of the baddest guys ever in a low budget Horror film. But they are also a whole lot of fun. I laughed pretty much every time they were on screen together.
Dreaming Purple Neon could very well by my choice for PARTY MOVIE OF 2016! It is a riotous low budget film full of crazy practical effects and insane scenes. It is ambitious and epic in scope. It doesn’t pretend to be anything besides a wildly violent blast from the past and it never loses it’s focus. A wicked low budget film, but it’s clear every single last penny spent is on screen. Practical effects are the stars of the show and they look wicked good. The effects crew obviously had a good time splattering blood in every way possible and the good characters and driving music bring things together in a very special package. A gift to all Horror fans past and future.
Whether you’re nostalgic for a bygone era or trying to connect with your roots, Dreaming Purple Neon will hit all the right bases PLUS bring you something new and fun. A modern low budget Horror film with heart and style.