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Stake Land

4 out of 5 stars 248 customer reviews

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(Aug 02, 2011)
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Editorial Reviews

America has fallen. A vampiric scourge sweeps the nation, turning brother on brother and parent on child as the blood-hungry beasts take deeper and deeper hold upon the land. It s hard for the survivors to know whether to be more afraid of the creatures themselves or the violent religious groups that have sprung up in response, but there is clearly only one choice: fight or die.
 
Connor Paolo (GOSSIP GIRL) stars as Martin, a young man traveling with only his taciturn mentor a hardened fighter known simply as Mister as protection against this blasted earth in search of the rumoured safe haven of New Eden. Winner of the Midnight Madness Award at the Toronto International Film Festival and hailed as the American horror film of the year (Todd Brown, TwitchFilm.com), STAKE LAND establishes director Jim Mickle as a leader in the new generation of horror.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Connor Paolo, Kelly McGillis, Nick Damici
  • Directors: Jim Mickle
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Dark Sky Films
  • DVD Release Date: August 2, 2011
  • Run Time: 98 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (248 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0051CSIKQ
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,180 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Having had a successful run at midnight movie showings, I wasn't expecting much seriousness from a movie entitled "Stake Land." But I was pleasantly surprised by this bleak and well-made creature feature in which man might be the most dangerous enemy left. In truth, there are very few elements within the film that haven't been utilized abundantly in other movies--but despite their familiar nature, "Stake Land" is still quite effective on its own terms. Well acted, suspenseful, and with good effects--I'd say this has the potential to be a sleeper hit on the DVD market as more people become familiar with it. Cobbling plot points from sources as diverse as Cormac McCarthy's "The Road" to "Zombieland" to almost everything in between, the film has a surprising heft and gravitas that distinguishes it from other noticeably lighter genre fare.

Cinema's fascination with a post-apocalyptic world continues here as the movie is set in a time where an epidemic of vampirism has extinguished most of the human race. In reality, this plays much more like a zombie epic and that's truthfully what it is. The creatures have pointy teeth, but the script follows the conventions you'd expect from an outbreak of the reanimated. A rogue warrior travels the land with a teenage companion as the two try to make it to a rumored land of safety called New Eden. Along the way, they meet threats of all sorts and even pick up a few stragglers. Whole towns of survivors are barricaded and fortified against the monster menace. But perhaps the most alarming enemy are the new religious zealots who see the vampires as vengeance against the wicked. In a land overtaken by lawlessness, monsters may be the easiest foe to fight.

The script is tidy and provides a narration that is haunting and well done.
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4 Comments 76 of 78 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
Stake Land is the perfect example of a low budget movie that is amazingly superior to similar apocolyptic vampire films with high budgets ("Priest," "Day Breakers," etc). Best compared as "The Road" meets "30 Days of Night," it's a very intense film that grabs you early and does not let you go.

A teenage boy (maybe 15-16 years old) is rescued by a "lone warrior" from a vampire attack that leaves his entire family dead. The lone warrior (sort of a cross between Wesley Snipe's "Blade" with a badass Mickey Rourke attitude) teaches the boy how to fight and kill vampires as they travel up north to find the salvation city of "New Eden." They pick up a handful of fellow travellers along the way and they slowly become a "family" of sorts. These characters (particularly the "lone warrior") are stereotypical yet developed enough to not come across as cheesy or cliche. Not only do the travellers have to worry about vampires, as mankind may be even more dangerous: rapists, killers, psychos, and murderous religious fanatics- who are a combination of all these things.

As you can see, the plot is not overly original. However, what it lacks in originality it makes up for with other strong qualities: the acting is solid and the movie itself is bleak as hell. As the film goes on, the elements of helplessness and doom escalates with a terrifically sad violin music score. And it only gets bleaker as it goes on. No sexy teen vamps that sparkle in sunlight, here, folks. The vampires are refreshingly gross and creepy with rotting skin and animalistic behaviour. The scenes with the religious cult leader are frightening, making you wonder which is worse: vampires or mankind.

Even with its low budget, Stake Land runs circles around similar movies that have much higher budgets.
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Comment 29 of 30 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Now this is a vampire movie. Stake Land is an effort from director Jim Mickle, who previously helmed a bleak and understated horror flick called Mulberry Street a few years back, which still ranks as probably the best film to ever come out carrying the After Dark Horrorfest banner. With Stake Land, Mickle presents to us an apocalyptic wasteland that the vamps are terrorizing and feeding off of. For teenager Martin (Connor Paolo), his means of survival are being accompanied by the mysterious Mister (Mulberry Street star Nick Damici) as they come across various other survivors (including Kelly McGillis and genre stalwart Danielle Harris) and an insane religious cult while attempting to make their way to the supposedly untouched land of New Eden. Violent, scary, and unapologetically bleak; Stake Land is the kind of horror film that we don't see much of anymore, which in itself is a crying shame. It pulls no punches and even when it offers a glimmer of hope, it seems so far away that you will be on the edge of your seat to see if our heroes make it or not. While the film isn't without its flaws, most notably being that various characters appear and are introduced with little in the way of character development to boot, this is undoubtedly the best vampire film I've seen in quite some time. All in all, give Stake Land a chance, there's a reason why there's been so much hype built around it for a while now, and you won't be disappointed with what you get here either.
Comment 26 of 28 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Amazon Video
Having had a successful run at midnight movie showings, I wasn't expecting much seriousness from a movie entitled "Stake Land." But I was pleasantly surprised by this bleak and well-made creature feature in which man might be the most dangerous enemy left. In truth, there are very few elements within the film that haven't been utilized abundantly in other movies--but despite their familiar nature, "Stake Land" is still quite effective on its own terms. Well acted, suspenseful, and with good effects--I'd say this has the potential to be a sleeper hit on the DVD market as more people become familiar with it. Cobbling plot points from sources as diverse as Cormac McCarthy's "The Road" to "Zombieland" to almost everything in between, the film has a surprising heft and gravitas that distinguishes it from other noticeably lighter genre fare.

Cinema's fascination with a post-apocalyptic world continues here as the movie is set in a time where an epidemic of vampirism has extinguished most of the human race. In reality, this plays much more like a zombie epic and that's truthfully what it is. The creatures have pointy teeth, but the script follows the conventions you'd expect from an outbreak of the reanimated. A rogue warrior travels the land with a teenage companion as the two try to make it to a rumored land of safety called New Eden. Along the way, they meet threats of all sorts and even pick up a few stragglers. Whole towns of survivors are barricaded and fortified against the monster menace. But perhaps the most alarming enemy are the new religious zealots who see the vampires as vengeance against the wicked. In a land overtaken by lawlessness, monsters may be the easiest foe to fight.

The script is tidy and provides a narration that is haunting and well done.
Read more ›
3 Comments 23 of 27 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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