Aaron’s Blood is the story of dutiful single father Aaron (James Martinez) and his son Tate (Trevor Stovall), who struggles with hemophilia, a disease that makes the normal wear and tear of adolescence life-threatening.

After a run-in with the school bully, Tate is brought to the hospital, his situation quickly turning critical. The medical team is forced to give him a blood transfusion – “One unit with two more on standby,” a doctor explains. He’s at risk of hemorrhaging at any moment and remains sedated for his own benefit. Aaron sits through the night by his son’s side, thinking, praying, and dreaming. Fortunately for the boys, in a matter of hours, the situation turns from grave to extraordinary. Tate is suddenly healed! He’s up and talking. He asks his dad to bring him home, and the next day, bemused but grateful, Aaron obliges.

Unfortunately for the boys, there is a new problem at hand. Tate isn’t just back to normal – he’s different. Over the next day or so he begins to exhibit some unsettling changes that catch the interest of those around him. Aaron, himself a phlebotomist, soon discovers that the source of his son’s eerie symptoms is likely the blood transfusion he received, and the only chance of curing him may well be to track down the donor.

Though a great starting point for relatively new director, Tommy Stovall (Trevor Stovall’s father), the film isn’t without its problems. There is an undeniable flatness to it. Tate’s monotone affect certainly doesn’t help matters, but more than anything it is the “action” scenes. They seem as unlively as our soon-to-be-vamp lead. Yes, it is arguably admirable Stovall didn’t blow his budget on CGI flash – props go to the special FX makeup team – but the action shots really could have used a little more razzmatazz. It’s as if the scenes are being telegraphed to the audience:

Head chop.
Big jump.

That being said, credit where credit is due – the story is an interesting take on the vampire genre. Although not completely unexplored, the idea of vampirism as an illness, a possibly curable contagion, is something usually reserved for the zombie genre. It was also thought-provoking to have a hemophiliac, someone haunted by their own blood, and a phlebotomist, someone who deals in blood on a daily basis, go on a journey surrounding the sharing of blood while quite literally, sharing blood. It’s poignant: a shared bond; a shared disease.

Overall Aaron’s Blood is worth watching for fans of two things: vampire flicks and the ever-heartwarming demonstration of the lengths a parent will go to for his or her child. Also, the fact that Tommy Stovall wrote the film and cast his son in the key role lends it an air of authenticity only a real father and son duo could.

The film hits theaters on June 2nd, and On Demand and Digital HD on June 6th.