Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Jakob's Wife Review: A Small Town Wife Finds Her Fangs

Barbara Crampton	...	Anne Fedder Larry Fessenden	Larry Fessenden	...	Pastor Jakob Fedder Bonnie Aarons	Bonnie Aarons	...	The Master Nyisha Bell	Nyisha Bell	...	Amelia Humphries Sarah Lind	Sarah Lind	...	Carol Fedder Mark Kelly	Mark Kelly	...	Bob Fedder Robert Rusler	Robert Rusler	...	Tom Low Jay DeVon Johnson	Jay DeVon Johnson	...	Sheriff Mike Hess C.M. Punk	C.M. Punk	...	Deputy Colton Omar Salazar	Omar Salazar	...	Oscar Angelie Simone	Angelie Simone	...	Eli (as Angelie Denizard)

Release date: April 16, 2021
Running time: 99 minutes
Directed By: Travis Stevens
Written By: Mark Steensland, Kathy Charles, Travis Stevens
Starring: Barbara Crampton, Larry Fessenden, Nyisha Bell, Mark Kelly, Sarah Lind, Robert Rusler, Bonnie Aarons, Phil Brooks 

Anne (Crampton) is married to Jakob (Fessenden), a small-town minister and feels like her life and marriage have been shrinking over the past 30 years. After a chance encounter with “The Master,” she discovers a new sense of power and an appetite to live bigger and bolder than before.  As Anne is increasingly torn between her enticing new existence and her life before, the body count grows and Jakob realizes he will have to fight for the wife he took for granted.

Angelie Simone	...	Eli (as Angelie Denizard) Ned Yousef	Ned Yousef	...	Naveed Al Amin Giovannie Cruz	Giovannie Cruz	...	Mariana Al Amin Armani Desirae	Armani Desirae	...	Little Girl Monica L. Henry	Monica L. Henry	...	Dr. Meda Skeeta Jenkins	Skeeta Jenkins	...	Butcher Kathe Newcomb	Kathe Newcomb	...	Mattie Morgan Peter Brown	Morgan Peter Brown	...	Actor
Jakob's Wife is a clever film that has a lot of old school style.  The film clearly takes inspiration from 80s horror films with a text and shot style that evoke classic horror.  And some of the music also evokes this time period with a stylized music to fit the stylized text.  The director said that he wanted to evoke classic horror films when making this and he succeeded.  The film has plenty of over the top gore (such as gratuitous amounts of blood shooting from every bite victim), some corny acting, and some strong characters that further feel like call backs to a different time.   

But although Jakob's Wife has a classic feel to it, it also has plenty of more modern themes.  The story is one of a small-town wife learning to find her own voice and trust her own choices.  And this is brought to life by Barbara Crampton's wonderful performances as Anne.  She goes from a timid, supportive partner to a strong willed, vivacious character.  And in order to do that, she has to make a lot of tough choices as she learns to adapt to her new situation.   And she is perfectly paired with Fessenden as Jakob, who is initially seen as boring but we find out has more going on than we originally thought.  Despite his plain persona, he has more of a rebellious side than he initially lets on.  

Jakob's Wife has a great balance of horror and dark comedy.  A lot of this is due to Anne's dry sense of humor.  But the movie also has a lot of little comedic touches that let you know that this film is not taking itself too seriously. From some small town humor, to the over the top characters, and Anne's reactions to her slow change, the film has a wonderful balance that will keep you entertained and hooked on this story.  And overall the story of the film is perfectly paced.  It develops deliciously slowly as Anne comes to terms with the changes that are happening to her.  And the story also reveals more about the vampire that bit her and its motivations.  It doesn't pile on anything too fast, letting the story move at a good pace and keeping the viewer engaged.  And this lets you watch as Anne transforms into a more confident, determined, and vocal character.  This film has an empowering aspect that is not just from Anne's physical transformation.  Her character transforms emotionally as well.  But I also love that as her character evolves, she still retains some of what grounded her.  She becomes confident and opinionated, but uses it to adapt to her current life and not have a full break from it.  She moves from a follower in the relationship, to a true partner; one with agency and an idea of what she wants in life.  

Jakob's Wife has an old school feel, strong characters, a great balance of dark comedy and horror, and a well-paced story that has plenty to sink your teeth into.

Watch it.

Kim Barnard	...	co-producer Morgan Peter Brown	...	co-producer Barbara Crampton	...	producer Nina Kolokouri	...	executive producer Rick Moore	...	executive producer James Norrie	...	executive producer Bob Portal	...	producer Inderpal Singh	...	producer Travis Stevens	...	producer Joe Wicker	...	co-producer   Directed by  Travis Stevens	Writing Credits (in alphabetical order)   Kathy Charles	 Mark Steensland	 Travis Stevens
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Jakob's Wife is releasing in theaters, digitally, and on demand on April 16, 2021.  For showtimes, click here

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