Director: Julien Seri
Cast: Jonathan Howard, Fanny Valette, Jess Liaudin, Jonathan Demurger
Running Time: 80 minutes
We horror fans get the chance to go retro with a French-infused unstoppable psycho thriller from writer/director Julien Seri. One which breathes new life into the eighties-centric exploitation genre.
NIGHT FARE is quite a feat when you realise what Seri and his team have managed to pull off in only three months. A project written, financed, well cast and filmed all within that time period, and not only is the finished product a stylishly put-together thriller shot on the eerily empty streets of Paris, but it offers quite an inventive conclusion that, dare I say, is impossible to predict.
If William Lustig’s sleazy classic MANIAC COP, merged with Stephen Hopkins’ cult fave JUDGEMENT NIGHT, I believe you’d have something close to what we have with NIGHT FARE. It’s a very unique kind of revenge tale which follows two best friends – Mancunian Chris (Howard) and Parisian Luc (Demurger) – who are reunited for a Paris party, only for their night to take a turn for the worse when refusing a taxi driver his fare.
Chris, who appears a little distant, mysteriously returned to the UK two years ago, leaving loudmouth Luc to pick up the pieces and fall for his girl Ludivine (Valette). However, their night for a catch-up, and possibly allow Chris to open up to Ludivine about why he had to go, is instead a fight for survival when the two recklessly pick the wrong cabbie who wants someone to pay more than the tariff.
Superbly suspenseful for the most part, with a striking silent performance from a hulking Jess Liaudin while channelling the late Robert Z’Dar as a cool and calculated killer, NIGHT FARE’s streamlined central plot means this is perfect viewing for those looking for throwback slasher with a clever twist. It never gets bogged down in its own moral message, and while I wouldn’t say it’s a “real-time” thriller, it has that essence with the majority of the events played out over few hours.
A slick modern psycho-thriller with its inspiration clearly cemented in the past, NIGHT FARE is a ride worth paying for!