Blood Beat ★★★★★

Holy. Shit.

This is not what I was expecting. This was part of the holiday viewing because it apparently takes place during Christmas. I saw some mistletoe, and I think there might have been a Christmas tree, but I was so completely absorbed in everything else that was going on that I became oblivious to the holiday element.

When I picked this disc up, it was with a "sure, why not?" attitude that I bring to most genre films that sound like they might be inept cheapie productions. I had somehow assumed it was a shot-on-video picture. But this movie, restored from 35mm negatives, is a true stunner. For the first 20 minutes, I was engaged and intrigued, but I had no idea what was waiting in the wings. By the halfway mark, I was on the edge of my seat, rapt, wondering what the hell was going to happen next, how much longer the tension could possibly hold... no longer thinking that the samurai element might be cheesy and ill-conceived, as I once imagined.

Bloodbeat, man... holy shit. This is that stuff for which you watch 100 heaps of crap, hoping you'll find THIS.