Bliss (2019) review


The BBC has recently attempted a semi-successful re-invention of the vampire lore with their mini-series of Dracula.

Much like zombies and slashers, vampires feel done to death (excuse the pun), until every now and then a film comes along with something fresh to say.

For zombies you could have It Stains the Sands Red or One Cut of the Dead, and for vampires you can see Joe Begos’ Bliss.

Much in the same way as Dracula, Bliss pitches the vampiric tendencies as a parasite that ravages its host into bloodlust. Here instead of the tried tropes Begos delves into the world of hallucinatory drugs amongst the art community as a young artist struggles to get over the painter’s version of writer’s block.

Dezzy has been clean for some time, but once she gets a hit of this new drug on the market her day-to-day life starts to spiral out of control with her artistic flair also coming to the fore.

On the surface as her condition worsens and her bloodlust becomes more urgent her personality changes to as she becomes quite unlikeable, but as with someone who has an addiction, there are chinks in her armour to suggest she is under the vampire strain’s grip.

Bliss is also beautifully shot and really glamourises grimy locations that are soaked in neon lights, with the atmosphere of some of the settings really capturing Dezzy’s fractured state of mind.

The practical effects are also fantastic with plenty of blood got gorehounds and although their budget may have been small they really make every penny count with some twisted set pieces coupled with superb lighting.

It might be quite gloomy and twisted but you can’t take your eyes off Bliss and you can’t deny it is that something different that vamp films are crying out for.



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