Directed by Matthew Vincini [Other horror films: N/A]
A somewhat bleak film, The Cattle Farmer struck me as a movie with a decent amount of potential, and while the final product was somewhat palatable, a few things definitely could have been tightened up, and the execution on the story made this one end a bit drab.
The general story isn’t bad, and more so, while it’s not screaming originality, I thought there was a lot to like about how the mystery unfolded, though I’d have liked a few more creepy scenes before we’re presented with the answer. Even the final twenty minutes have a somewhat horrifying vibe to them (which falters somewhat with the execution, but the gist of the situation was definitely dark), though I do think a twist at the end is somewhat weak.
Philip Lombardo (as Gabriel) felt a bit too all over the place at times. No doubt he was a threatening guy (that scene in which he forces Konner to play Russian roulette was a quality case in point), but he felt a little bit ridiculous at times. I wasn’t entirely enthralled with Jake Blakeslee (Konner) either, but that has more to do with where the story took him than is does his performance, which I thought was solid during the finale.
I wish that Hannah Lullo (Astrid) had a bit more to do with things, and I guess more importantly, I felt like her character was misused toward the end, or at least as far as I could tell. Lastly, I wish we found out a bit more about Kathryn Milewski’s character (Claudia), but maybe there wasn’t a good place to throw that information in.
There are definite elements here that needed work, outside of aspects of the story. The audio seemed somewhat iffy at times, which I think had more to do with the delivery of some of the lines as opposed to equipment, but that’s outside of my league. Related, some of the lighting was, well, dark. Some really dim and hard-to-see scenes take place in this film, and especially toward the end when you want a clear-cut image of what’s going on, it can be a bit annoying.
While I do like elements of the movie, such as the darkly somber tone and finale (if they could have extended the suspense they had in the final twenty minutes throughout the whole film, that would have been a treat), The Cattle Farmer felt more like wasted potential than it did a good movie. This still may be worth a look, and I recommend doing so just so you don’t take my word for it, but as for me, it didn’t quite work out.