Ana Lily Amipour’s A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night is one of the most confident and engaging directorial debuts that I’ve ever witnessed. It’s comparable to David Lynch’s “Eraserhead” or Darren Aronofsky’s “Pi” and not because it’s shot in black and white, but because it has a confident surrealism that will burrow into your psyche and remain with you for a long time to come. It’s a film that teases elements of convention only to defy expectations. It’s a beautiful entry in a genre that never quite existed before, an Iranian vampire Western, and will likely never exist again.
There is something about the cape and cowl of vampire lore that modern interpretations have left behind. The first thing you’ll notice about A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night is how brilliantly it reintroduces this element of the legend. Sheila Vand stars as the girl, and in almost every scene she’s clad in a white striped shirt and Burka. This traditional piece of clothing cuts the black and white of the film like a knife. It dissects scenes with a haunting element of blackness and extends the dread of the character into the infinite expanse past the edge of the theater screen. Moreover, it flows like silk past the girl as she drifts aimlessly through her life in bad city.
Bad City is a place devoid of sense. But people still must live there, and push to survive. Bad City has a ditch filled with dead bodies, but nobody seems to care even for a moment. Especially, our main character, Arash who confidently strides by this grisly scene in the opening of the film. This grim reality is taken as fact in Bad City. Arash is as lonely as the girl, and the two take some solace in one another.
This strange reality is further exposed through brutally honest scenes of odd connection. There is something raw about the film that gives you a pathway to connection. It’s never anything as cliched as the typical romance, although those elements are there, instead the film treats you to a life of boredom through the lens of a young vampire. She is easily swayed to acts of insane violence that will make the film endearing to even the most diehard horror fans but the moonlit film, is better an inspiring an uncanny sense of dread that can’t often be found in modern cinema.
A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night is one of the finest films I’ve ever seen. It’s masterfully directed, meticulously shot, and has a near perfect soundtrack. I know we previously reviewed this film, but I couldn’t for the life me understand where the reviewer was coming from. So here’s a much different opinion, I’d recommend you see it immediately, and tell your friends, this is a film that will be talked about for years.