Halloween Scene: Last Shift (2014)

last-shift-posterOnce again I find myself wildly enjoying a film suggested by the fine folks who host the Killer POV podcast which has recently ended with Shock Waves rising in its place. I love when I find hosts who I not only enjoy, but whose opinions gel with my own, so I was really glad to hear they were just shuffling into a different set-up and not fully calling it quits. I don’t know how much stock I put into capital C criticism, but I do know that I like finding people whose opinions align with mine. That’s how I got to watching Last Shift which is co-written and directed Anthony DiBlasi.

I’m glad the KPOV gang suggested the film because there’s no way I would have watched it based on the quick synopsis posted on Netflix since it sounds like a gigantic rip off of John Carpenter’s Assault On Precinct 13. In other words, it’s about a cop keeping an eye on the station that’s about to be closed down as crazy stuff starts happening. BUT, said craziness revolves less around a bunch of gang members and more around malevolent spirits.

Right here, I’ll just say that you should just watch this movie, but if you’re curious about even more details, we’ll get into a few of them here. Juliana Harkavy stars as rookie cop Jessica Loren who feels like she got the short straw on her first night by watching this soon-to-be-shuttered station so the biomedical waste people can show up to 86 some old evidence. Soon enough she starts getting calls from hysterical girls, encountering floor-urinating homeless dudes, hearing strange sounds and that’s just the beginning.

And it gets BONKERS from there, you guys. I won’t get too much into it, but there’s strong allusions to the Manson Family, cults and also a variety of spirits who all seem intent on messing with poor Officer Loren who may or may not have a connection with what’s happening.

At the end of the day, I love how bold DiBlasi and company were with this concept. How can you not think of Carpenter when you hear this basic plot? And yet they fully dove into it and made something even freakier. I also appreciate the ride I was taken on. I found myself easily caring about Officer Loren while appreciating her strength and also fearing for her safety. Add into that the larger supernatural elements at play and I was fully absorbed, freaked out and enjoying myself as events unfolded.

DiBlasi easily earned a fan in me. Have you guys seen his earlier movies like Missionary, Cassadaga or Dread? Let me know in the comments if they’re worth checking out. If not, I’ll anxiously await his next effort!

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