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Fang (2018) Review

I lived in Buffalo, NY for twenty-five years, and it seems as soon as I left it turned into a centre of indie horror filmmaking. Gregory Lamberson (Widow’s Point, Johnny Gruesome) was always there, but now there’s Emir Skalonja (Casting Couch Slaughter, Holland Road Massacre: The Legend of Pigman) and as I recently discovered that the director of Fang, Ombis: Alien Invasion and several other films, Adam R. Steigert is based out of The Queen City as well. It’s almost enough to get me to trade my poutine for chicken wings and move back.

Chloe (Melodie Roehrig, The First Purge, Grace is Gone) and Joe (Theo Kemp) are out of drugs. And for addicts like them, that is a very bad thing. Since they also don’t have any money, they decide to steal the money to get them. Unsurprisingly, that goes wrong and ends up with somebody dead.

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The duo decide this would be an ideal time to visit the last family Chloe has left, The Crowleys. They live in a big house out in the middle of nowhere. The perfect place to get their lives in order, and stay out of sight while the murder is being investigated. Obviously they’re not horror fans, or they would know what a bad idea that was. Once they arrive there with Chris (Jason John Beebe, Crossbreed, WrestleMassacre) and Shelly (Jennie Russo, Return to Splatter Farm, House Shark), two stranded motorists they meet on the way, they’ll find out quickly enough.

Steigert, who directed Fang and co-wrote it with his wife Kristin, has taken the classic old dark house films from the silent and early talkie era and updated them with modern effects and gore. From the moment we meet the creepy butler Harold (Gregory Blair, Serena Waits, For Jennifer) and start noticing the lack of lights or phones and plethora of locked doors, we know something isn’t right here.

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And if anyone missed those signs, once Aunt Doris (Melantha Blackthorne, Parts Unknown, Krampus: The Devil Returns) and Uncle Roy (Patrick Mallette, Madhouse, Those Who Seek) get home, dinner will make it quite obvious. One thing I wish Fang didn’t make so obvious was that it’s a werewolf film. The film itself doesn’t give it away until later in the going, but the poster and trailer certainly do. It would have been nice to have kept just what was going on a mystery.

Thankfully, that doesn’t really hurt the film, though. Fang still has plenty to keep your mind occupied. Like the guy (Christopher Burns Jr., Confessions Of A Homicidal Prostitute: Demonatrix) chained up in the basement and being fed body parts. Or the late Michael O’Hear (Lycanimator, Model Hunger) as retired cop/conspiracy monger William Sanders. There’s even a drug dealer named Christmas Eve (Sean C. Sanders) who just happens to know a guy who makes silver bullets.

Despite that last one, Fang isn’t a comedy. It just doesn’t take itself entirely seriously, either, and has fun playing with some genre tropes. Convenient coincidences that help move plots along get skewered repeatedly.

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There’s still plenty of jumps and mostly practical gore. The werewolf effects are kept to a minimum, but we do get several glimpses of it. The results aren’t bad for a film that was probably filmed on a low five figure budget, if that.

It doesn’t affect the plot, but there are connections to some of the director’s other films, which seem to be forming their own universe. O’Hear played William Sanders in Gore. And some of the characters from Fang will return to The Horrific Evil Monsters, which is currently in post-production. Watch for a segment early in the credits to set that up, and another at the end of them.

Fang is available to stream on multiple outlets through Steigert’s 388 Studios Releasing. I caught it on Tubi, but it’s on pay services as well if you hate commercials. You can check the film’s Facebook page for more information.

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Where to watch Fang
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