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The Independent Critic

STARRING
Mel Novak, Frankie Pozos, Aaron Guerrero
DIRECTED BY
Aaron K. Carter
SCREENPLAY
Aaron K. Carter, Ronnie Jimenez
MPAA RATING
NR
RUNNING TIME
96 Mins.
DISTRIBUTED BY
Independent
OFFICIAL WEBSITE

 "An Hour to Kill" About an Hour Too Long 
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There's an admirable experiment lying somewhere beneath the surface of the boldly interesting An Hour to Kill, essentially a B-movie centered around two professional hitmen, Frankie (Frankie Pozos) and Gio (Aaron Guerrero), who find out from their boss (Mel Novak) that they have an hour to kill before their next job. To pass the time, the two begin swapping stories about their own notorious stories with one another. It's the stories, with titles such as Valkyrie's Bunker, Assacre, and Hog Hunters, that comprise the majority of An Hour to Kill's 96-minute running time. 

If there's anything worse than giving an indie film a less than stellar review, it's having it be a late arrival. Originally submitted outside The Independent Critic's submission dates, An Hour to Kill hung out in cinematic limbo until an inquiry e-mail put the e-mail on my radar and I committed to checking the flick out despite the usual calendar boundaries. 

An Hour to Kill is a bold film and it's hard not to admire co-writer/director Aaron K. Carter's original vision for the film that is part crime thriller and part low-budget indie/B-movie horror. There's no question there will be critics who adore the film - I'm simply not one of them. It didn't help that the screener for the film featured an intrusive watermark, a hindrance for a film that already possessed some obstacles to overcome. 

The script, co-penned by Carter with Ronnie Jimenez, has some darkly comical sequences to it. This is especially true with each subsequent scenario's unraveling, an unraveling that allows the film's increasingly twisted core to come to life with a certain perverse joy. 

Despite the feeling that there's fun to be found here, An Hour to Kill feels like it's an hour too long. There's not a moment when the film convinces as a crime thriller, while the individual segments range from sloppy, as in Valkyrie's Bunker, to the just plain weirdness of Hog Hunters. 

While I've had a chance to review some of the key players in An Hour to Kill before, here the ensemble mostly falls flat with nary a spark to be found. 

Currently available on Amazon, An Hour to Kill is still worth a view for those who appreciate the B-movie side of the indie world and the opportunity to support an up-and-coming filmmaker. While An Hour to Kill largely disappoints, Carter's obviously got a strong vision and I still look forward to seeing what he comes with in the future. 

Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic  

    The 50/50 x 2020 Pledge

    The Independent Critic is proud to support Indy-based Heartland Film by committing to the 50/50 x 2020 Pledge - By the end of the year 2020, The Independent Critic will achieve gender parity in its reviews of both shorts and feature films. Furthermore, The Independent Critic also pledges support for the Ruderman Family Foundation's call for authentic representation of people with disabilities in film and actively commits to leverage its journalistic influence to effect genuine change in the film industry by calling for and actively promoting authentic and inclusive casting and hiring of people with disabilities.

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