I hate myself for not seeing this sooner. Not suicide mad, but embarrassed to be a cinephile mad. Dust Devil is part Stephen King’s The Gunslinger and part The Outlaw Josie Wales. The entire film is a beautiful amber-orange, drawing its inspiration from the sun-bleached desert. This dark tale of good versus evil feels as much like a graphic novel as anything you’ll ever see. black magic, blood-painted homes. cannibalism, decapitation, Dust Devil will seduce your curiosity for 90 minutes.
Filmed in Africa, everything about Dust Devil feels exotic, haunting, and sweltering, and you probably haven’t seen anything like it. The desert becomes a feeding ground when an ancient shape shifter arrives to feed on the broken and lonely. His reward is taking what little life they have left. Wendy (Chelsea Field), is on her own after leaving her controlling husband, fleeing into the desert wasteland. She picks up a strange hitchhiker (Robert John Burke), and the mutual attraction is immediate. She has no idea what kind of evil she has allowed into her life. This film might be 22 years old, but I don’t want to spoil anything for you.
The heady Spaghetti western meets African spiritualism vibe creates a strong thematic undercurrent and director, Richard Stanley knows how to capture the epic scope of this land. Relentlessly pursued by a local police officer (Zakes Mokae), the lawman is determined to stop the Dust Devil before his murderous transformation, something he might lack the power to carry out. In the end will man, spirit, or ancient evil overtake the desert land?
Bonus points for one of the coolest shotgun scenes in 22 years.
Please note that I chose this trailer for the quality. The film is not subtitled.