Film Review: All the Moons

a young girl abandoned

At some stage, which is probably the fault of Bram Stroker and Lord Byron in equal measure, vampires became sexy. Many cultures, in almost every part of the globe, have legends or folktales of blood-sucking creatures. These monsters certainly weren’t tall handsome Counts with hypnotic eyes. The Gothic period helped fuel a narrative of immortality being full of promise and opportunity. All the Moons takes a different tack.

Northern Spain in the late nineteenth century, the last Carlist War is in its final days. A young girl (Haizea Carneros) is growing up in an orphanage run by nuns. When it’s hit by a bomb, she’s seriously injured. A mysterious woman (Itziar Ituño) saves her life and heals her. Instead of being rescued by an angel, she’s turned into an unusual vampire. Subsequently abandoned, the gift of eternal life comes to be a curse.

The great period detail and breathtaking setting ensure that All the Moons stands out from the crowd. The central tale itself may feel a little familiar, but the harsh yet beautiful landscape (captured by Imanol Nabea’s impressive cinematography) and the assured evocation of the era really work in its favour. As does Carneros’s clear-eyed performance. Igor Legarreta’s film Basques in the mud and muck. All the Moons is a haunting historical horror.

All The Moons premieres on Shudder on 10 February.

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