JUNE 10, 2007
I think I will impose at least a 6 month moratorium on comedic vampire movies. I’ve really had my fill.
Since, I dunno, I was born, I have been saying “We need more vampire movies with Don Rickles!” But I wanted something better than Innocent Blood. It’s not an awful movie, but it’s overlong by about 20 minutes, and by the 3rd act I had really grown tired of watching mobsters bite each other. There are some minor attempts to rewrite the usual vampire rules (they have reflections, they can be killed by a bullet to the head) but not enough is done with them. It actually looks more like they shrugged off the mirror aspect just so they wouldn’t have to figure out how to pull off the effect (which wouldn’t surprise me; the movie looks incredibly cheap).
Of course, John Landis is one of those guys who has a sort of lifetime pass due to his early classics (in horror’s case, that would be American Werewolf in London), and you can’t really fault him for trying to do something similar with the vampire myth, but the laughs are few and (very) far between, and the effects work is more or less generic. Naturally, as this is a Landis film, there are some funny cameos (Tom Savini, Sam Raimi, even Dario Argento) but nothing to write a blog about.
Robert Loggia seems to be having fun, so there’s something. And his crew is comprised entirely out of stock “mob” actors, like David Proval, Tony Sirico, Chazz Palminteri, and the greatest of them all, KIM COATES. Why Coates never made it to the level of a Michael Madsen or Tom Sizemore is beyond me. Sadly, he is wasted, as is the always great Luis Guzman. And Marshall Bell (Kuato!!!) disappears after like 2 scenes. Why bother casting a recognizable character actor and then write him out of the movie before the first act is through?
Making matters worse, the DVD is a full frame piece of crap, like all early Warner DVD releases (Still waiting on a proper transfer of Caddyshack II, assholes!!!). I looked online and found that region 4 (Australia, or New Zealand. Look, I'm never gonna figure out the difference.) has an anamorphic widescreen release, but it’s not worth importing. I somehow doubt that the left and right sides of the frame contained everything that validated the excruciating running time.
What say you?