Highly Entertaining Horror Movie, Sure to Compell & Dazzle
Stephen Shernov | 02/19/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"At Dawn They Sleep is a modern day action suspense story involving vampires, demons and angels. Director and screenwriter is Brian Paulin. Tom Savini (fx artist for Dawn of the Dead and Director for Night of the Living Dead 1990) says At Dawn They Sleep is "An outrageous mix of extreme horror and over the top action." Ian (Brian Paulin) and Stephen (Rich George) are like brothers. Together they are among the city's leading drug pushers. A deal turns to doublecross as a gang looks to make an instant name for themselves. After the slaughter, Ian and Stephen awake to find that they have been granted a second chance. Soon after they arrive home to recoup, their rewards continue when they each get a visit by a sexy woman. The women turn out to be angels who reveal to the guys that they are the chosen ones. Chosen to exterminate the human race. Forgiveness proves to not be an angelic trait, as satisfying their thirst for revenge is first on the agenda. Along with restored health, their senses of awareness is heightened with their physical abilities enhanced. They prove this by making their rivals into easy kills. A new craving overtakes them as they discover another thirst that is only quenched by the life's blood of their prey. The feeding evokes a rush stronger than any drug. Stephen longs for more. He abides by the angels. Ian opts to follow his doubts, and his curiosity is answered in the form of a demonic force. The imposing figure is too powerful to contend with. The demon's intent through is to warn of the angel's ulterior motives and offers an alliance with the vampires. Ian's doubts lead him towards a darker path. Stephen refuses to listen to Ian, as his habits in bloodlust would spell overdose with any other drug. Eventually conflict occurs between Ian and Stephen. Their battle becomes epic with power and precision that would instantly decimate any human. Did they kill each other or come to their senses? Who got the upper hand, heaven or hell? ADTS offers intrigue with it's new twist on superstition, by playing (and preying) on the belief of those involved in a cult...which is any religion. The outstanding special effects are displayed through fiercely ominous monsters and excessive gore. The camerawork veers into odd visuals for a surreal atmosphere complimented with a black metal score. The action goes full throttle with the supernatural, along with battles of dynamic gunplay. Shot on digital video doesn't hinder the movie but instead brings a documentary feel, reinforced by the convincing performances. There is also comedy in an everyday manner, giving the human interaction more dimension. Too many critics have the audacity to give acclaim to hollywood films that favor the famous names of the moment over quality acting, and also favor a use at saturation of computer graphics in place of a plot. Here is a movie that is actually made for the horror fan in mind. ADTS is proof that bountiful creativity doesn't have to come with an exorbitant price tag."
Don't ask me what this is about because I have no idea
Daniel Jolley | Shelby, North Carolina USA | 07/25/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I feel like I'm the one who has slept through something because the ending of this film does not make one bit of sense to me. The first half of At Dawn They Sleep was good enough to make me think there might really be something to this film. The acting wasn't all that bad (with one exception) and the plot was interesting albeit weird and fuzzy. There are these two drug lords (or a drug lord and his lackey-like buddy) who aren't afraid to kill anyone who crosses them, nor are they afraid to take their chances on ladies of the night. It's safe to say they never met any girls like the two they brought home at the start of the action here, though. These girls are vampires - wait, they do chomp down on the guys' jugulars but - hey, wait a minute, one of them unfurls a pair of wings - of course, what we have here are angels turning our main characters into vampires. Why would sweet little angels do this? Well, these angels aren't even angelic. They hate mankind and have apparently waited a long, long time for their chosen ones in the form of our total loser protagonists to come of age. Apparently, these guys are supposed to kill everyone on earth for the angels so that they can come down and live on earth - or something like that. Well, our guys take to vampirism like ducks in a pond, digging in to their victims to get all the good juicy stuff inside. At this point, some type of demon appears and offers the tough guy a better deal; the filmmakers went to some trouble to make the demon's voice sound all dark and evil with reverberating echoes. Unfortunately, all it really accomplished was to make two-thirds of the demon's words totally incomprehensible. Perhaps writer, director, and star Brian Paulin sensed that this was a mistake because I lost the trail of the plot right there. It looked like the guys just tried to film some weird stuff and fighting scenes to pad the rest of the film. As things degenerated, I kept thinking that there would at least be some type of closure at the end. Alas, though, I am clueless as to what happened. I won't say this is a bad movie because it has its good parts, and there is a lot (but not an extreme amount) of gore scattered across the whole thing - but I just can't get too excited about a movie that ends up making very little sense."