Moonchild, the latest release from Visual Vengeance, is something of an anomaly in their output. Because while their previous releases have been the works of filmmakers few have heard of, writer/director Todd Sheets has gone on to make a name for himself with films like House of Forbidden Secrets, Clownado and Final Caller. For those who remember when he was selling his films from ads in the original Fangoria this will be a slice of nostalgia. Those who only know him from his later works may find it a bit of a shock.
In a dystopian future, Jacob Stryker (Auggi Alvarez, Dominion, Bloodthirsty Cannibal Demons) was an unwilling participant in experiments to create a super soldier by fusing his DNA with that of a wolf. After he escaped the first time they killed his wife and kidnapped his young son Caleb (Stefan Hilt, Violent New Breed, Dominion) who shares his lupine genetics. Now he’s loose again and looking for revenge. If the bounty hunters on his trail or the bomb implanted in his intestines don’t kill him first.
Along the way, he’s joined by Talon (Dave Miller, Eat the Rich: The Cannibal Murders, Zombie Bloodbath 2) and his band of rebels including Dr. Andronymous (Cathy Metz, These Angels Are Cruel, Prehistoric Bimbos in Armageddon City) and Athena (Kathleen McSweeney, Violent New Breed, Zombie Bloodbath 2).
And he’ll need all the help he can get to battle his way across what’s left of Kansas City with the likes of Hades (Rod Will) and his cannibal followers between him and his son. And there’s the troops and bounty hunters Lothos (Harry Rose, Bloodthirsty Cannibal Demons, Zombie Bloodbath) has set on his trail as well as the ones waiting at his headquarters to deal with as well.
It’s really amazing the effort that went into Moonchild. There are car chases, stunt work that includes people being thrown from moving vehicles and large-scale brawls. There actually aren’t a lot of transformation or werewolf scenes in the film, but the climactic one is accomplished with some reasonably good, for its time, digital morphing effects.
The lack of effects may be due to the version of Moonchild in the screener running an hour and twenty-seven minutes. IMDB and most other sources list it as an hour and forty-two minutes. I’m assuming that version is what is rather confusingly listed in the extras as the “original, alternate VHS cut”. Regardless of the reason, you’re better off disregarding the title and artwork because rather than a horror film this is more like After the Fall of New York or Bronx Warriors with a werewolf tacked on.
Despite some acting and dialogue that are fairly rough even compared to similar films and a cast that looks like most of them were still in high school when it was made, Moonchild is still an above average example of the SOV genre.
Visual Vengeance will release Moonchild on Blu-ray on October 11th, you can check their Facebook page for details and announcements of upcoming titles. Hopefully, they’ll include some of Sheets’ other SOV films such as Goblin and Violent New Breed. And if you want more films like Moonchild to howl over, FilmTagger can offer some suggestions.
Info and Select Bonus Features:
– First time ever available on Blu-ray
– New, director supervised SD master from original tapes
– Includes bonus Audio CD of the movie soundtrack
– Two new director commentary tracks
– Includes the original, alternate VHS cut of Moonchild
– Wolf Moon Rising: The Making of Moonchild documentary
– Archival behind-the-scenes cast interviews
– Four Page Liner notes by Matt Desiderio
– Limited Edition Slipcase by The Dude Designs – FIRST PRESSING ONLY
– Collectible Mini-poster
– ‘Stick your own’ VHS sticker set
– And More