Who is Kate Lavin and why should you know her name? The answer is simple: she is the multi-talented and filmmaking mastermind behind zombie flick Trail of Blood on the Trail. To say that Kate Lavin shouldered this production is by no means a hyperbole. In a film that takes place under the normalest of circumstances and locales: a hiking trail, Lavin serves as writer, director, producer, cinematographer and editor in her highly frenetic and ultra-violent feature film debut.
The plot is simple: Brad’s (Brett Erickson) idea for a romantic proposal to girlfriend Ava (Aileeah Colgan), consists of a bike stroll through a hiking trail away from the noise of civilization. However, unbeknownst to the two, the world around them is slowly being devoured by carnivorous and vicious zombies (especially on this trail); one-by-one unsuspecting hikers are viciously assaulted and converted into the undead, perpetuating an infectious cycle throughout the hiking grounds. As all this happens around them Ava and Brad, continue on their biking trail, strolling along past scenes of carnage and prospective victims. The two comically bicker and quip, like a married couple, as Brad leads Ava to the destination of his planned proposal– a supposed romantic trail. Brad and Ava get a huge surprise once they arrive and their journey takes an unsuspecting turn.
I applaud Kate Lavin (and co-writer Jeremy Friedrich) for taking this simple and singular idea and crafting a film with unflappable flair. Despite taking place entirely on a hiking trail, the movie is never short on fun, quite the opposite in fact, featuring thrills and ton of blood. Trail of Blood on the Trail overcomes its simplicity by exhibiting a kinetic cinematographic dynamism and editing that engulfs you into the havoc with vicious energy. The scenes shot in the dank tunnel trail in near-darkness adds a nauseating and claustrophobic sense of despair while the horde of zombies assault our protagonists.
This is a film that is crafted with the utmost passion for filmmaking and horror, as Kate Lavin has shown, donning multiple roles with auteur prowess. She has created a movie for the zombie fans, who will find enjoyment in Trail of Blood on the Trail while offering plenty of blood and devourment.
Trail of Blood on the Trail is currently available to stream or purchase through The Lavin Production site. The film has played at festivals, including: Dazed 4 Horror 2015 (where it won Best Slasher Feature, Fright Night Film Festival 2015, and Terror Film Festival 2015, where Kate Lavin was nominated for Best Director.