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An Hour to Kill (2018)


Two assassins have an hour to kill (so to speak) before their next hit. To help pass the time, they entertain themselves by sharing horror stories to one another. With bizarre titles such as "Valkyrie's Bunker" "Assacre" and "Hog Hunters" - which hit-man's story will be deemed most disturbing when all is said and done?


Normally the wraparound segment on an anthology horror is also a horror - not this one. The wraparound here - the titular An Hour to Kill - is far closer to early Tarantino. Two hitmen with an hour to kill before a hit, the two eat, sit in the car, shoot the shit - all the while spouting electric dialogue to keep you invested. It also has a decent story. Most antho wraparounds barely have story - let alone a good one. The two leads, Aaron Guerrero (Dead Kansas) and Frankie Pozos (LA 143) play off of each other beautifully, with Guerrero's calm professionalism and Pozos' manic energy, the two of them wouldn't be amiss in a warehouse with Mr. Pink. The wraparound is enough to hold any viewer alone.

Then there are the horror/comedy sections. And they're all very different.

"Valkyrie's Bunker" is the tale of a nazi bunker in California - one that happens to have a stash of pot growing near it, and the unfortunate group of young women here to see if they can snag it. Of course, that all goes wrong. Starring the talents of Amanda Rau (Lost Fare), Jola Cora (Lady of Lafayette), Stephanie Strehlow (Truth or Dare), Alexya Garcia (Abducted), and Sarah Gordy, it plays out as you'd expect. It is probably the weakest segment - but that's not a bad thing, with the quality of what's to come.

"Assacre" takes the leap into competitive eating contests, rivalry, and all round nastiness. By far the most gory segment, starring Luna Meow (Things 4), and Brian Reagan you'll not see the ending coming. It's bloody as hell, and really well done. One for the gore hounds.

The final segment, "Hog Hunters", is, well, weird. It's far more disturbing than the previous segments and goes... there. A bowling team take on a new member, and decide to initiate him with a session of hog hunting. It's a fantastic story, and will have you covering your eyes (but still peaking). Starring Michael Camp (Dead Kansas), Joe McQueen (Zombie Ed), and Chris Morris (Dead Kansas), it's a darker than black piece of comedy, that's not to be missed.

Writer / director by Aaron K. Carter (Dead Kansas), and co-writer Ronnie Jimenez do a spot on job with the dialogue. From the wraparound to the segments the writing is edgily paced, sharp and witty - something that a low budget movie desperately needs. And it oozes here. The direction is just right, with Carter pulling off some wonderfully framed shots. There's also some good music choices in there with songs from Power of Aggression.

The acting is pretty good across the board. Pozos and Guerrero should be aiming for big things - especially together they're crackling. Special shout out goes to Joe McQueen for a standout performance though.

Arguably, the wraparound is the best segment - and without checking, probably the longest. I would ask the director and all involved: Please can I have a feature with the plot firmly on these guys? Sequel!

All round, a highly enjoyable watch, An Hour to Kill is an eclectic action film, horror / comedy. I can't wait to more from these guys.

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