Archive for 28 weeks later

RETURN OF HHMC, PART 5

Posted in Movies with tags , , , , , , , on 09/28/2012 by Chris

[Editor’s excuse note: Due to this bullshit closing out last October, the final two RETURN OF HHMCs didn’t make it up. Rather than post them last November, I decided to hold them off till this year, so they’ll make a nice appetizer for my third annual Halloween Horror Movie Challenge. October is upon us, so get psyched assholes!!]

John Carpenter’s Vampires

John Carpenter is like the cinematic equivalent of Metallica: he’s got a couple of classics (and at least one or two arguable masterpieces) under his belt, but the rest of his output ranges from so-so to Lars Ulrich. Vampires is thoroughly mediocre, but I like it perhaps more than I should. Much of the reason is because of James Woods, who carries this movie practically single-handedly. He’s so good here, however, that it only seems to amplify the rest of the movie’s shortcomings. Woods plays the foul-mouthed leader of a team of Vatican-sponsored vampire slayers, who finds himself up against a “master vampire,” who’s trying to recover an ancient relic that will allow him to walk in daylight. This is especially a problem considering that the vampire mythology is largely simplified here – crosses and garlic don’t work, which leaves sunlight or a good ol’ staking as your only options of killing one. There’s two main problems with this movie: first, after a pretty cool introductory scene, nearly all of Woods’ team is wiped out. I realize he’s the star of the show, but the idea of a team of vampire hunters seemed more fun than watching one or two guys chasing one. Second, the supposed “master vampire” – excuse the pun here – sucks. He’s supposed to be one of the most powerful vampires ever, but he never really seems menacing, even when disemboweling people. But I dig the movie’s southwest-sorta flavor; Carpenter has always stated that his first love was westerns, and this seems like his attempt at bringing some of that into the horror realm. And Woods, like I said, elevates it greatly. Check it out for a decent waste of time, but avoid the in-name-only DTV sequel starring Jon Bon Jovi, which is about as enjoyable as slamming your dick in a car door.  3/5

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