Friday, October 10, 2014

Review: Dracula 3000 (2004)

Sometimes there comes along a movie that truly leaves me speechless. This is either because the movie is so excellent that words cannot truly express how much I enjoyed it....or because I have left the film feeling so stupefied that it is difficult to remember how words work. As there is a new Dracula movie hitting theaters, I felt I should cover at least one Dracula adaption for Horrorfest. Sadly, I chose this one. But really, how bad can it be?

I probably shouldn't have asked that question.
Well, for whatever reason, they decided to make a Dracula film set in space. Now, that might sound kind of interesting when you really think about it, as it offers a whole level of possibilities regarding how the movie is handled. It could lead to a story with horror similar to Alien, giving us a feeling of isolation with the whole oppressive atmospere that can only come from being in an inescapable situation. But, we do not get that here. No, we get something else entirely. Something with Coolio. Fair warning, this may hurt.

Of course, I'm the one who's really feeling the pain here.

It's the year 3000, assuming the title didn't make that obvious, and we find ourselves with a salvage ship called the Mother III. The intrepid crew consists of Captain Van Helsing (the guy with the obvious name), Mina (the smart attractive intern who is likely doomed), Aurora (the vice-captain who totally won't be the center of any oversexualization), Humvee (the big mean guy), Professor (the smart one), and 187 (it's freaking Coolio). The run across a ship called the Demeter and the captain decides it's perfect for salvaging. Mina isn't really crazy about this idea because I can only assume she also realizes that this movie likely wants something bad to happen to her.

They always target the cute ones with pigtails.
 The vice-captain, Aurora, also thinks it's a bad idea but she might be thinking more about the dead captain they find tied to a chair who is grasping a crucifix as if letting it go with undo all of existence. They head back to their ship but, before they make it there, their ship decides to play keep away with them by uncoupling from the Demeter and leaving them stranded. Surely this isn't a sign of anything sinister, yes? Coolio and his large buddy, Humvee, find their way to the cargo hold and find some leftover props from Argento's Dracula 3-D, which is pretty damn scary. Coolio thinks the coffins might be full of stolen goods and not dead bodies, so he cracks one open and finds that they're full of sand. Now, I remember the whole thing about vampires needing soil from their homeland in their coffins, but sand? What, are they beach vampires? Beach vampires in space? Alright, movie, you better start making sense.

Something tells me I am barking up the wrong pile of shit.
Anywho, Humvee leaves for the bridge while Coolio stays alone to open more coffins until he eventually gets attacked and his comrades arrive to find him suffering from a bad case of the vampires. Either that or Coolio went on a bender and they recorded it all. He goes on and on about killing the crew and Aurora's tits as if they're what vampires crave, so it could easily be just as I hypothesized. She books it and runs into Count Orlock...wait, Orlock? The vampire from Nosferatu? But this is clearly title Dracula 3000 and he's dressed exactly like Bela Lugosi and you're telling me that he's Orlock? They didn't even try here, did they? Oh well, moving on from that oddness, she rejoins the group to tell them about her meeting and they don't trust her, what with one of their crew now seemingly obsessed with killing them all, so they restrain her as she tells them about Orlock. But this is interrupted by a sudden wild Coolio attack.

He appears to have spent a bit too much time on this fantastic voyage. It's time he's sent to the gangsta's paradise.
They manage to wrestle him down and make him deader than his music career, then Aurora admits she's a cop. And a robot. I guess that explains why she's not vampire chow, yes? They untie her and consult the ship's database with the Professor, their wheelchair bound crewmate, and learn the captain is descended from the famous vampire hunter, Abraham Van Helsing. You know, the one who fought Dracula and not Orlock. This leads them to believe the vampire who is clearly not Dracula (except he looks just like him) will seek revenge on the captain, because that makes sense. The captain thinks he knows how to stop the vampire menace and Aurora joins him in trying to change the course of the ship. Orlock is not having this and the robot lady cop leaves the captain alone to fight the vampire, because that also makes sense. Humvee and Aurora come back to find the captain and Mina are both vampires and they dispatch both of their friends.

Casper Van Dien is surely laying there thinking about the fact that he once did good movies.
The movie's token nerd has a bit of a meltdown, as he has now realized that he's stuck in a wheelchair all alone in a ship with vampires, and wouldn't you know it? A vampire shows up and makes him into a vampire. Humvee and Aurora find him and stab him with a cross, killing him because he wasn't important enough to have a fight with. Then they finally face off against Orlock as they...close the door on him, taking his arm off as they realize they can't fly the ship. This leads them to make the logical decision to get naked and screw as they fly towards oblivion and we get a soliloquy from the dead Demeter captain, followed by the ship blowing up. Yay!

If this went on any longer I was going to join Udo Kier in oblivion.
This movie was positively mind-numbing. It was stupid, uninspired, confusing, and surprisingly low of vampire action. I mean, seriously, they made a movie called Dracula 3000 that didn't even have Dracula in it, but rather featured a vampire character from a film based on Dracula. And they didn't even make him look anything like Orlock, instead making him look like the classic Universal version of Dracula. This movie is so bad that it exists in the category known as Z-movies. Keeping that in mind, I have to tell you that even among those this film stands out as exceptionally bad. You'd think it might be good for a few laughs at the very least, but no, it couldn't even make me snicker.

These screenshots are more entertaining than the entire film is. That's not a joke.
I was so blissfully happy to be done with this movie that I quite literally felt a rush of energy that has since dissipated as I wrote this very article. The actors do about as well as you'd expect from such a bad movie and the directing is just as bad as the script, which makes sense considering the director helped write this garbage. If you want to waste some time on a cheap horror movie about vampires, go watch Stake Land and stay far away from this piece of shit. Until I get mauled to death by a pigtailed vampire lady, I'll be here sifting through the excrement on your behalf. Later days, bleeders.

Seriously, go watch Stake Land. It's on Netflix right now.

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