Like the best revenge movies, the low-budget werewolf chiller “I Am Lisa” (***1/2 OUT OF ****) is a derivative but rewarding escapade in sweet vengeance. Put movies like “Carrie” (2013) “Walking Tall” (1973), and “Ginger Snaps” (2000) in a blender, and you’ve got the basics of “I Am Lisa.” Freshman scenarist Eric Winkler and “Monster X” director Patrick Rae have warmed up all the standard-issue clichés from revenge thrillers for this sizzling supernatural werewolf saga.

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Although it concerns a twenty something girl bitten by a werewolf who becomes a bloodthirsty Lycan, “I Am Lisa” is not without its share of amusing comic relief moments. Incidentally, Lycans are werewolves in humanoid form, whereas a werewolf is a larger-than-life wolf. Before our heroine can savor the ecstasy of revenge, she must suffer at the hands of a savage girl gang and a sadistic small-town female sheriff. These villains beat our millennial maiden senseless before they abandon her in the boonies for the wolves to finish off.

Poor little Lisa, struggling to keep her grandma’s used bookstore open after granny vanished under baffling circumstances, doesn’t stand a chance against these dastardly evildoers. Predictably, the sheriff was behind granny’s departure. Forty-five minutes elapses before Lisa can give these adversaries a taste of their own bitter medicine. The filmmakers preface this yarn about female empowerment with a sarcastic quote from German poet Heinrich Heine:

“We should forgive our enemies, but not before they are hanged.” Although it contains scant amounts of blood, gore, violence, sex, and profanity, this unrated 92-minute indie chiller is a feminist take on werewolf flicks. Meantime, Winkler and Rae insert several allusions to renowned sci-fi/horror novelist Richard Matheson, who wrote the book “I Am Legend,” and include clips from the Vincent Price movie “Last Man on Earth” (1964), the first of three adaptations of Matheson’s novel. You don’t have to be a film geek to enjoy these references, but it probably wouldn’t hurt.

Appropriately, “I Am Lisa” unfolds with a midnight long shot of an incandescent full moon. A werewoman is shown fleeing through the forest as County Sheriff Deborah ‘Deb’ Huckins (Manon Halliburton of HBO’s “The Sopranos”) guns her down with a silver bullet. Nearby, Deb’s Lycan lackey, Dolphus (Shawn Eric Jones of “First Man”), watches with a grim expression. The scene shifts to the small Missouri town of Northbrook where our heroine, Lisa Leroux (Kristen Vaganos of “Lock Down Love”), runs a used bookstore.

She inherited it from her grandma before the woman vanished without a trace. Mind you, the werewoman that Deb shot dead in the first scene was Lisa’s granny. Lisa’s bookstore is the sort where customers can hang out in comfortable chairs and read books. A plain Jane nerd from head to toe, Lisa wears a beanie, a plaid shirt, heavy black, horn-rimmed spectacles, and craves veggie pizzas. She reminded me of actress Eliza Dushku from “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.” No sooner have we met Lisa than we meet the chief troublemakers who taunt her relentlessly.

Jessica Huckins (Carmen Anello of “Zombie Beauty Pageant”) and her mean girls posse, Dana (Sarah McGuire of “Captives”) and Millie (Millie Milan of “Clownado”), amble in like they own the place. Jessica steals a first edition hardback copy of “A Clockwork Orange” by Anthony Burgess. Earlier, Lisa had called Jessica’s bluff when the dame threatened to torch the classic Ray Bradbury novel “Fahrenheit 451.” A tall, tattooed, brunette in a tank-top, with an occupational sneer, Jessica peddles pot around town without a worry because her mom is the sheriff.

Basically, Jessica can do whatever she wishes, and Deb will look the other way. Eventually, tired of Jessica’s bullying, Lisa complains to Sheriff Deb. Instead, Deb arrests Lisa on a trumped-up disorderly conduct charge after she knocks her unconscious with a single blow. Jessica and her gal pals haul Lisa into another room, and they work her over while Deb’s degenerate chief deputy, Nick Huckins (Chris Bylsma) watches with lusty relish. Later, after a werewolf has bitten our heroine, an anonymous good Samaritan rescues Lisa, bathes her wounds, and lets her recover until she is well enough to return to Northbrook. Lisa hides out with her high school best friend Samantha (Jennifer Seward of “Terminal”), but Lisa isn’t the same girl.

Earlier, after her rescue, Lisa stared in a mirror and cringed at the sight of several facial scars and her mangled fingers where Jessica had used pliers to tear off her nails. Miraculously, all her wounds healed without a trace of scar tissue, and Lisa has become a meat eater. She buys stacks of meat from a local grocery. Furthermore, her sense of smell has grown enhanced. Lisa can identify everything Samantha ate for lunch.

Although Lisa has remained hidden from the Huckins clan, Deb is suspicious since nobody has found her body. Later, Samantha pleads with the sheriff to fill out a missing person’s report, but Deb refuses to accommodate her. Moreover, Deb ransacks Samantha’s house without a warrant, but she finds no trace of Lisa. At this point, after almost an hour of gradually building up to the inevitable, Lisa exacts her revenge on the Huckins as well as Jessica’s unsavory friends Dana and Millie. Anybody who has been bullied will enjoy watching Lisa give these dastards their just comeuppance.

Villains can make or break a movie, and Sheriff Deb makes a terrific villain. She doesn’t succumb as easily as her adult children. She has been killing and hiding the bodies of those who have tried to usurp her authority. Just when it seems like Lisa has gained the upper hand, Deb surprises her and turns the tables on her for a sensational finale.

You’ll abhor Deb as much as you’ll love Kristen Vaganos’ wrongly persecuted heroine. Director Patrick Rea doesn’t let his low budget interfere with the fun, so the usual shape-shifting scenes are implied rather than shown with time lapse photography. Nevertheless, “I Am Lisa” is crowd pleaser.

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