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Bullets, Fangs and Dinner at 8

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Bullets, Fangs and Dinner at 8
File:Bullets Fangs and Dinner at 8.jpg
Official release poster
Directed byMatthew Rocca
Produced by
  • Matthew Rocca
  • Vinnie Pompo
  • Joe D'Amato
  • Leslie Rocca
  • Vito Rocca
  • Stacie Kennerly
  • Ashley Weidenbach
  • Jay Rock
Written byMatthew Rocca
  • Garrett Schweighauser
  • Eva Rocca
  • Matthew Rocca
  • Brian Patrick Butler
  • Diana Ferrer
  • Vinnie Pompo
  • Casey Nicholas-Price
  • Robert F. Nixon
  • Caroline Amiguet
  • Lori Morkunas Jones
Music byTJ Landry
Edited byMatthew Rocca
Release date
  • June 12, 2015 (2015-06-12) (Temecula Independent Film Festival)
Running time
90 minutes

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Bullets, Fangs and Dinner at 8 is a 2015 American horror film written and directed by Matthew Rocca. The film has been considered a hybrid of the vampire horror sub-genre and the modern crime thriller genre, with undertones of black comedy. It was inspired by films such as Bram Stoker's Dracula and The Departed.


A cult of humans thirsty for blood are behind a mass killing at a church.[1] The church's pastor, Steven Cooper, secretly masterminded the attack and is actually the leader of the "vampire" cult. Seminary student Michael Collins is the only one who knows the truth about Steven's duplicity, and seeks out proof to expose him with the help of a civilian he saves, Vivian Abbott. A dinner party to help endorse Steven's good name is just the distraction needed to investigate him. But as the night continues, both Michael and Steven are put in extreme situations while trying to stay steps ahead of the other.[2]


Before its release in 2015, Matthew Rocca spent four years writing the film between short student films at San Diego State University. Upon graduating, he went into pre-production in 2011 and started officially shooting the film in 2012. Because of its large cast of extras and small budget, principal photography took an additional two years to finally wrap in February 2014. The film was shot in various locations in San Diego county including its opening scene at the Church of St. Luke's in Rancho San Diego, and various scenes at dk3 Studios in Mira Mesa.[3] Dave King, the dk3 president, was happy to provide his studio for Rocca to film critical shots.[3]


  • Garrett Schweighauser as Michael
  • Eva Rocca as Vivian
  • Matthew Rocca as Steven Cooper
  • Brian Patrick Butler as Johnny
  • Diana Ferrer as Miss Blank
  • Vinnie Pompo as The Destroyer
  • Casey Nicholas-Price as James


The official premiere was June 12, 2015 at the Temecula Independent Film Festival in Temecula, California[4] where it won Best Guerrilla Feature and was nominated for Best Horror Feature. Wages of Cine enjoyed the film so much at Black Cat Picture Show in Augusta, Georgia, that they recorded a video review and awarded the film with the Wages of Cine (Critic's Choice) Award.[5] On October 30, 2015, the film had its hometown premiere in San Diego, California at the FANtastic Horror Film Festival[6] and took home "Best of the Fest." The festival honored this award to the film that the audience reacted to the best.[7] The film also picked up 3 additional nominations at the FANtastic Horror Film Festival, including Best Director (Matthew Rocca), Best Actress (Eva Rocca), and Best Horror-Comedy.[8] The film screened again on February 12, 2017 as part of San Diego Film Week.[9][10] Its most recent festival screening was March 30, 2017 at San Diego's Screen With Screams Film Festival, where it was awarded First Place. [11] Since then, the film had a limited theatrical run with Digital Gym Cinema in San Diego [12] and is now available for viewing on Amazon [13]

Region Release date Festival or Distributor
USA 12 June 2015 Temecula Independent Film Festival
USA 22 August 2015 Black Cat Picture Show
USA 30 October 2015 FANtastic Horror Film Festival
Worldwide 15 July 2016 Fan Boy Film Festival
USA 12 February 2017 San Diego Film Week
USA 30 March 2017 San Diego Screen With Screams Film Festival


San Diego film critic Mike Thomas called the film "an exquisite Gothic horror film" and praised its "meticulous direction and proper casting" .[14] Emilie Black of Cinema Crazed.com posted a less favorable review, saying that the film was made with good intentions and had a few good performances, but had technical and continuity issues.[15] Andy Boylan gave it a 2.5 out of 10.[16] The Hollywood Verge did a 15-minute podcast segment on the film, calling it ambitious for a first time director, and would like to see Rocca's next project done as a smaller magnitude short film. [17] In his review of the film, critic Mike Haberfelner said the film has a fast, interesting start, and a slower build-up to the climax with a big bang toward the end.[18] Nick Newbauer of Dream Craft Pictures gave it a thumbs up, describing the film as "vampy campy," like a B horror movie from a 1990s video store; something you don't see as often today.[19]

Awards and festivals[edit]

Festival / Event (year) Award Recipient Result Ref.
Temecula Independent Film Festival (2015) Best Guerrilla Feature Matthew Rocca Won [4]
Best Horror Feature Matthew Rocca Nominated [4]
Black Cat Picture Show (2015) Wages of Cine Award Matthew Rocca Won [8]
FANtastic Horror Film Festival (2015) Best of Fest Matthew Rocca Won [6]
Best Director of a Feature Film Matthew Rocca Nominated [8]
Best Supporting Actress in a Feature Film Eva Rocca Nominated [8]
Best Comedy Film Matthew Rocca Nominated [8]
Fan Boy Film Festival (2016) Official Selection Matthew Rocca N/A [8]
San Diego Film Week (2017) Official Selection Matthew Rocca N/A [9]
San Diego Screen With Screams Film Festival (2017) 1st Place Matthew Rocca Won [11]


  1. "SDSU grad talks about his latest movie". thedailyaztec.com. 2012-05-09.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Feature-length film by Matthew Rocca shooting at dk3 studios LLC". dk3 studios LLC – via PRnewswire.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 "Award Selections". tifilmfest.org.
  5. "Wages of Cine Reviews – Bullets, Fangs, and Dinner at 8". Wages of Cine – via YouTube.
  6. 6.0 6.1 "FANtastic Horror Films Open San Diego's Festival". horrorhouseparty.com.
  7. "FANtastic Horror Film Festival Gives Special Recognition". horrorhouseparty.com.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 "Fan Boy Film Festival". fanboyfilmfestival.com. Archived from the original on 2017-01-13. Retrieved 2017-01-19. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)
  9. 9.0 9.1 "San Diego Film Week 2017". sandiegofilmweek.com.
  10. "Film Consortium Presents: San Diego Film Week (February 10-19)". digitalgym.org. 2017-01-27.
  11. 11.0 11.1 "San Diego's Screen With Screams Film Festival". facebook.com.
  12. "THE LOCALS: Bullets, Fangs, and Dinner at 8 (October 20 - October 26) - Digital Gym Cinema". 18 October 2017.
  13. "Amazon.com: Watch Bullets, Fangs and Dinner at 8 - Prime Video". www.amazon.com.
  14. "Two Sides of the Same Coin". matchflick.com.
  15. "Bullets, Fangs and Dinner at 8 (2015) [San Diego Film Week 2017]". cinema-crazed.com.
  16. "Taliesin meets the vampires". taliesinttlg.blogspot.com.
  17. "Hollywood Verge - Ep. 12 - Blade Runner Birthdays, Pretty Faces, Steven Spielberg plans, and Information on Fangs". itunes.apple.com.
  18. "Bullets, Fangs, and Dinner at 8 review". searchmytrash.com.
  19. "A gritty indie horror film review". facebook.com.

External links[edit]

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