Promoted as an ‘Iranian spaghetti western vampire story’, and filmed in moody black and white with a carefully selected soundtrack, ‘A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night’ sounds specifically designed to appeal to a hip audience, the sort who moisten their selvedges at the thought of being first on the ghost train to cultsville. Beyond the hype, however, the film is a startling deconstruction of cliché, and provides some indelible scenes and images, not least the instant iconography of the girl vampire, dressed in a Breton top and a black chador and riding a skateboard. It may be hip as hell, but it’s also a powerfully original piece of work.
An interesting element is the emphasis on its identity as Iranian. It is actually an American film, made in California, produced by (amongst others) Elijah Wood. The director, cast and setting of the film are Iranian, however, and the dialogue is exclusively Farsi. Could this be a new direction for Hollywood, not simply ripping off and retooling but actually making 'foreign' films?