Stake Land

2011

Stake Land

Critics Consensus

Though the genre is well worn at this point, director Jim Mickle focuses on strong characterization and eerie atmosphere to craft an effective apocalyptic vampire chiller that also manages to pack a mean punch.

74%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 65

62%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 8,144
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Stake Land Photos

Movie Info

America is a lost nation. When an epidemic of vampirism strikes, humans find themselves on the run from vicious, feral beasts. Cities are tombs and survivors cling together in rural pockets, fearful of nightfall. When his family is slaughtered, young Martin ("Gossip Girl's" Connor Paolo) is taken under the wing of a grizzled, wayward hunter (Nick Damici) whose new prey is the Undead. Simply known as Mister, the vampire stalker takes Martin on a journey through the locked-down towns of America's heartland, searching for a better place while taking down any bloodsuckers that cross their path. Along the way they recruit fellow travellers, including a nun (Kelly McGillis) who is caught in a crisis of faith when her followers turn into ravenous beasts. This ragtag family unit cautiously moves north, avoiding major thoroughfares that have been seized by The Brethren, a fundamentalist militia headed by Jebedia Loven (Michael Cerveris) that interprets the plague as the Lord's work. Director Jim Mickle first grabbed the attention of horror film fans with his zombie-rat thriller Mulberry Street, in which Damici also starred and served as co-writer. They have teamed up again to deliver an even darker and bloodier shocker. Drawing on the post-apocalyptic frenzy described by Richard Matheson (author of the novel I Am Legend) and George Romero, STAKE LAND is a road movie with fangs and a phantasmagorical journey. Also starring horror movie icon Danielle Harris and produced by indie horror director Larry Fessenden (THE LAST WINTER). -- (C) IFC Films

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Cast

Michael Cerveris
as Jebedia Loven
Greg Jones
as Martin's Father
Traci Hovel
as Martin's Mother
Tim House
as Sherriff
Stuart Rudin
as Pops the Barber
Larry Fessenden
as Roadhouse Bartender
Chance Kelly
as Officer Harley
Adam Folk
as Soldier Crier
Jean Brassard
as French Canadian Cannibal
Lou Sumrall
as Brotherhood Man
Vonia Arslanian
as Dark-Haired Bartender
Phyllis Bash
as Old Woman
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News & Interviews for Stake Land

Critic Reviews for Stake Land

All Critics (65) | Top Critics (20)

  • Mickle's observation of a devastated working-class America is so sharp that the horror elements, though effectively handled, come to feel like an afterthought.

    Sep 12, 2011 | Full Review…
  • Like Romero, Mickle has a pragmatic attitude to genre convention: even the corniest stereotypes can be turned to new purposes.

    Jun 22, 2011 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Somehow its posse of American travellers, attempting to reach the Eden of Canada while assailed by vampires, seems a little dull.

    Jun 17, 2011 | Rating: 2/5
  • An angsty, bleak fantasy of America the lost.

    Jun 16, 2011 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

    Cath Clarke

    Guardian
    Top Critic
  • Other undead movies needlessly foreground the action. "Stake Land'' has its fight scenes, but here they're secondary.

    Jun 16, 2011 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • A film that shrugs off its small budget to present a meditation on survival and suffering.

    Jun 16, 2011 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Stake Land

  • Jun 12, 2017
    "Stake Land" is "The Walking Dead", but with vampires. Unfortunately, that also means it's a bit slow at times. However, for a low budget film (which I assume this MUST be) in the action/horror genre, the film makers have done an exceptional job. "Stake Land" is exciting and thoughtful with reasonably solid character development. (Too bad they didn't spend a little of those creative juices on the title.)
    Christian C Super Reviewer
  • Jun 03, 2016
    Normally when low-budget horror takes itself seriously, it is to the detriment of the film, but Stake Land proves that the right script and some flair, it can definitely be made to work in your favour.
    Gimly M Super Reviewer
  • Feb 07, 2016
    There's been countless apocalyptic films over the years, Mostly from zombies or a virus not so much vampires for some reason, This film has a Walking Dead vibe to it, It focuses more on surviving than actual vampire attacks, There was a few good action scenes but nothing great, The cast was good but something was missing that could of made this film better, Maybe lack of fresh ideas spoiled it.
    Jamie C Super Reviewer
  • Dec 26, 2014
    Stake Land features a zombie-like vampire apocalypse. The mysterious plague turned people into zombie-like vampires, young boy Martin rescued by a stranger known as Mister traveled together to find a safe haven, but vampires are not the only threatening the humanity. The cast is fantastic, you have Connor Paolo and Danielle Harris playing the leading roles. The fighting scenes were realistic, unlike most other films of the same genre, you see real focus on survival and building characters. Stake Land is also somewhat libertarian too with it's anti governmental message. But all and all, it felt short at the end with the uneven script.
    Sylvester K Super Reviewer

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