Angels and demons (and Henriksen): “Vampires: Out for Blood”

October 20, 2011

Hey, what do you know? Back to back Vanessa Angel movies! You know, it could only happen during Scary Movie Month, the most magical time of the year. What we’re looking at here is Vampires: Out for Blood.  It’s a pretty straightforward vampire flick that’s not nearly as monkeynuts crazy as Raging Sharks.  Yeah, only it isn’t as good as Raging Sharks, either—hey, how could it be? You read that right: this movie makes less sense than the one with the killer sharks controlled by aliens. If these vampires were controlled by aliens…well, it’d be a step in the right direction.

So, this movie is about a cop-on-the-edge named Hank (Kevin Dillon), and when I say “cop-on-the-edge” I ain’t whistling Dixie. As the movie begins Hank is so tormented by his divorce from his ex, Susan (Angel), that he’s pretty much in full meltdown mode. He stalks her in the park during her morning jog, beats the holy living shit out of a mugger in front of a small crowd, then waves his badge around like it’s a magic talisman and announces “I’m a cop” over and over again. Which, as any police department will tell you, is exactly what you should do after engaging in public police brutality. Basicallly Hank should not be carrying a gun. Hank should not be carrying keys or anything else sharp. Hank needs to be tranqued like a rampaging elephant.

Well, this little stunt doesn’t go over well with his boss whose played by the always-awesome Lance Henriksen, who is sort of the voice of the audience in this movie. Basically he says, “Um, you’re bugnuts and shouldn’t be working, but the contrivances of plot require me to give you a new case.” That case entails finding a missing coed named Layla. Hank starts with the logical first step: he visits a local S&M club.

At the club he spots Layla (Jodi Lyn O’Keefe), all gothed out and making short work of a couple of lechers in a back alley. Hank is overcome with lust—they have so much in common: they both like beating the crap out of people—and joins her in her limo with another couple. Do vampires really take limos? That seems awful retro to me. Eh, what do I know? So they tool along and Hank and the other dude enjoy some road head. Whoa! Vampires are fun in a trashy sort of way.

Well, they get to an abandoned hospital where they join an orgy in progress. Layla leaps on Hank and begins screwing his brains out. Here, I should point out that Hank finds none of this at all strange! At least I don’t think he does. Kevin Dillon plays most of his scenes with a glassy-eyed, slack-jawed blankness. Maybe he was tranqued. Maybe he was thinking back to being on the set to Platoon, when he was young and believed his career with rocket to the stars.

Well, things go south for Hank when Layla vamps out on him and tries to bite his neck. Hank is really not into that sort of thing and promptly plugs her a couple times, then tries to shoot his way out of there. Unfortunately, before he can  get free, a big monster-vamp bites his neck. Hank promptly passes out.

When he comes to, the cops swarm the place looking the pile of bodies Hank must have left behind (you get the feeling this is something they’re used to with Hank). Only problem is, there aren’t any bodies or bullet holes or anything else. Hank comes clean with what really happened (He leaves out the part out the road head), and, amazingly enough, they don’t believe him.

[Little advice: if you’re being investigated for shooting a bunch of people that mysteriously disappeared, some bad things to say in your defense would be, “They were vampires” like Hank does. And/or “There was some kind of monster that attacked me” like Hank does. And you really shouldn’t say “I had a few beers…and some weed” to anyone but your attorney (who is not the person Hank says it to).]

Hank is promptly beached (and inexplicably indignant about it…really, dude? You didn’t see that coming?), but decides to continue investigating on his own time. Yeah, sure, nothing can wrong with that plan. While he’s at it, though, he begins to transform. His eyes start glowing periodically, and begins hearing Layla’s voice in his head. Pretty soon she begins appearing to him, explaining that now that he’s been bit, he’s turning into a vampire. Wow. Didn’t see that coming. Wait, no, I did. I think a mentally-retarded flatworm saw that one coming.

Fortunately, Susan is a bestselling occult author, and knows a thing or two about vampires. Problem is, Hank is so freaking loony by this point, she wants nothing to do with him. Have I mentioned that by this point, Hank is living in his car and has plastered the windows over with tinfoil? Yeah, Hank’s a hard protagonist to get behind, you know? But she comes around when Hank details his attack, and, er, stops appearing in mirrors.

So, the two of them team up to fight the vampires. And they do. Yeah, that’s basically the rest of the movie. Still, there’s a lot more craziness here. To wit:

* In the course of the movie, Hank has cops point guns at him on no fewer than three occasions. This is our hero, folks.

* While we’re at it, I cannot emphasize what a terrible acting job Kevin Dillon puts in. Acting is probably too strong a word for it. He stays awake and says things.

* A security guard insults Hank’s hygiene—he hasn’t showered or changed clothes in days—by saying, “Don’t expect to get any pussy. Not smelling like that!” Okay, new e-mail signature line!

* When Hank goes all Willam Calley on the vampire orgy, his shots fail to stop them (natch). This makes me wonder: why don’t people shoot for the hips? Undead or not, those are fragile joints, and you can’t walk with them shattered by a couple slugs.

* A security guard (who’s really a monster in budget-effective disguise) spots a tarantula crawling down the wall next to him. He eats it. WTF? A tarantula?

* The monsters’ weakness is their fear of heights, so Hank and Susan throw a noose around his neck and hoist him to the third floor of a building. Um, that’s not really a special weakness…

* Okay, so Hank is being involuntarily committed after he stalks Susan, but once she believes his story she recants, and says, “If I drop my complaint he can go free!” How does the law work in this place? Hank runs around screaming about vampires, waving a gun, living out of his tin-foil-encased car, and has been arrested twice, and just because his ex withdraws her complaint he walks? Um…I’m not buying this.

* “Undead head is the best you’ll ever have!” Okay, maybe that’s my new e-mail signature.

* Henriksen has a fresh cut on his forehead for the whole film. I like to imagine he got it kicking the crap out of a bunch of carjackers. Or a Yeti. He’s just that awesome.

Man, a movie so crappy that even Lance Henriksen and Vanessa Angel couldn’t salvage it. Talk about terror…

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