James Cullen Bressack and Zack Ward have drawn justifiable praise for their string of genre films, both in collaboration and on their own. Between them they’ve done everything from the extreme HATE CRIME to the more restrained RESTORATION and even made for cable horror like BLOOD LAKE. Now, with IF LOOKS COULD KILL they branch out in yet another direction.
Rookie cop Faith (Stefanie Estes BETHANY) is assigned to work with her friend Paul (Tomek Kosalka) who she has feelings for. While out, Paul breaks up a confrontation between Jessica (Summer Spiro OCEANS RISING) and Josh (Joe Mackey). Josh is jailed on Jessica’s complaint, but what he tells Faith makes her suspicious. Blocked in her attempt to investigate officially she pokes around a little on her own and is disturbed to find Paul and Jessica have become a couple. Paul’s cat goes missing, Jessica claims to be pregnant and may also be cheating on Paul. Is Faith just jealous, or is Jessica dangerously unhinged?
Filmed for The Lifetime Network of all places this obviously isn’t an all out horror film. Indeed IF LOOKS COULD KILL is as much thriller as horror, much in the same way FATAL ATTRACTION or BASIC INSTINCT did. If it had been made for a less restrictive outlet it probably would have resembled those films a lot more. As it is, it’s an effective film that generates a fair bit of suspense and kept my attention while being inoffensive enough, I could have watched it with kids around.
While it will to a bit restrained for a lot of this site’s readers it is nice to see that Bressack and Ward can make an enjoyable film without using gore and nudity. Not that I would have minded if there had been some, but this should prove that they get by on talent, with the rest just icing on the cake.
IF LOOKS COULD KILL is available now on VOD and DVD from The Asylum, (yes the SHARKNADO people).