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Azira: Blood from the Sand (2005)
-Reviewed by B-Movie Man Nic Brown
When you look up the film “Azira: Blood from the Sand” on the Internet Movie Database (www.IMDB.com) it is listed with the alternate title “Die Garage Band, Die!” which I actually think fits the film better. Written and directed by Vinnie Bilancio and Scott Evangelista. The movie follows; you guessed it, an L.A. garage band that decides to go out into the desert to film a music video.

 

As often happens when garage bands go into the desert outside of Los Angeles they have a few problems. When Cienega (Victoria De Mare) the bands token virgin, decides to give in to her boyfriend’s advances on the first night in the desert, they happen to do it in just the wrong spot and accidentally awaking Azira (played by B-movie favorite Julie Strain).


Azira was a witch who raised a demon. The demon gave her the strength of 100 men, so of course the king (go with us on this there was a kingdom in the desert outside of L.A. in the far distant past) wanted to marry her and have her bear him an heir. After she did, the king wanted to eliminate her, but he underestimated her powers and she proceeded to slaughter indiscriminately throughout the kingdom. A priest sacrificed himself so his blood could imprison the demonic Azira in the desert. That worked out pretty well for everyone, except the dead priest, and Azira was seen no more…. Until the blood of a virgin (that’s what you get for putting out in a horror film, ladies take note!) is spilled on the ground where Azira’s fleshless body lay imprisoned.

 

The next day Azira replaces Cienega and proceeds to start killing the band members one by one. Luckily, the Keeper, the descendent of the priests who trapped Azira in the first place, just happens to also be wandering around the desert outside Los Angeles. With his help the few survivors of the band try to save their friend Cienega and themselves.

 

This is a very entertaining film that knows what it is and plays to its strengths. There is plenty of gore and violence with a nice smattering of nudity and sex. Actually, in the case of Azira, there were very few scenes where Julie Strain wasn’t displaying her talents for all to see if you catch my drift. On an interesting side note, Julie Strain’s sister Lizzy Strain plays Jenn. the film school student shooting the band’s music video and also the one who must ultimately face Azira. So quick recap: blood and gore – check, garage band slaughter – check, gratuitous nudity and sex – check, what more could you ask for? I give the film seven out of ten for being fun and covering all the bases of independent film horror. Grab a copy of “Azira: Blood from the Sand” and see what you think.


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