The Retaliators

The Retaliators
Running time:97 minutes
Director:Bridget Smith, Samuel Gonzalez
Release date:Not communicated
An upstanding pastor, Bishop (Michael Lombardi) discovers a violent world as he searches for answers regarding the brutal murder of his daughter.

Mulder's Review

"From the earliest days of production, we always thought that FrightFest would be the perfect place for this film to premiere. The Retaliators is an uncompromising horror film, and we are thrilled that Paul McEvoy and the rest of the FrightFest team understood our vision and invited us to be a part of the genre's epic legacy. We're also looking forward to building an additional bridge between rock music and horror films with this project." - Dan Waite, president of Better Noise

This year's Frightfest festival left a lasting impression on many viewers by offering a perfect mix of action and horror film in what is so far one of our finest discoveries of this year. While the Hollywood cinema has formatted the cinema by proposing blockbusters as impressive as often accompanied by a minimalist scenario, the directors Bridget Smith, Samuel Gonzalez, jr. make of The retaliators a shocking film which dares to mix the action film in the vein of The Punisher, the thriller type Seven and the horror film worthy descendant of the Evil Dead spirit. 

While many films seem to be stuck in one unsurprising direction, the story at the center of The Retaliators begins as a hyper-violent horror film and then turns into a thriller with a rather surprising hint of humor, leading to a frighteningly effective revenge film. In the same way, by giving the main character the role of a priest and family man whose guiding principle is to spread the word of God.

In The Retaliators, Bishop (Michael Lombardi) is an upstanding pastor who discovers a dark and violent world as he searches for answers about the brutal murder of his daughter.  His crusade will bring him face to face with a detective who has vowed to put an end to the exaltations of many serial killers. From the very first images reminiscent of the best horror films (Evil Dead and Texas Chainsaw Massacre come to mind), the story focuses on the vengeance of a father who unleashes all his rage even if it means becoming a true vigilante in the tradition of Frank Castle (Punisher) and transforming himself into a real killing machine. 

The direction of Bridget Smith and Samuel Gonzalez, jr. gives a real added value to the scenario of The Geare Brothers . Some of the most violent scenes seen this year benefit from a real aesthetic research reminding us at times of the visual strength of some music videos.  It is impossible not to see in this film many allusions to action and horror films of the 80's and to find an excellent selection of rock songs. This film includes appearances and music by Tommy Lee of Motley Crue, Five Finger Death Punch, Papa Roach, The Hu, Ice Nine Kills, Escape The Fate.  There are also songs from From Ashes To New, Bad Wolves, Cory Marks, Eva Under Fire and Tempt.
The great care taken on the photography of this film and a perfectly mastered editing make The Retaliators a film of a rare emotional strength punctuated by an excellent soundtrack. Far from wanting to follow models that have proven themselves, the two directors sign one of the best action films of this year and above all make The Retaliators a pure cinematographic masterpiece to be seen and seen again with the same pleasure.

The Retaliators
Directed by Bridget Smith, Samuel Gonzalez, jr.
Produced by Allen Kovac, Michael Lombardi, Mike Walsh
Written by The Geare Brothers 
Starring Michael Lombardi, Marc Menchaca, Joseph Gatt, Katie Kelly, Abbey Hafer
Music by Kyle Dixon, Michael Stein
Cinematography : Joseph Hennigan
Edited by Randy Bricker , Andy Palmer 
Release date : August 30, 2021 (Frighfest)
Running time : 97 minutes

Seen on August 3, 2021 (Frightfest press screener)
Reviewed on August 22, 2021 (Frightfest press screener)

Mulder's Mark: