posted 00/00/2008

Directed by:
Paul Morrissey

Joe Dallesandro ... Mario Balato, the Servant
Udo Kier ... Count Dracula
Vittorio De Sica ... Il Marchese Di Fiore
Maxime McKendry ... La Marchesa Di Fiore

Country: Italy, France
Runtime: 103 min
Original title: Blood for Dracula
AKA: Young Dracula

I have never been a fan of Andy Warhol. As a matter of fact, I don't understand why this guy is so popular, or was at any point in his life. But, putting that behind me, I sat down to watch his version of Dracula, directed by arthouse favorite Paul Morrissey. My mind was open, and I was hoping to be pleasantly surprised. However, I was not. If a horny molasses monster could direct a film about Dracula, this would be the film it would make.

This impossibly dull take on Dracula finds our favorite Count looking wimpier than ever (played by B-movie fave Udo Kier who has been in a ton of movies because of this film) and hoping to find a virgin bride before he dies. He takes a trip into the country with his assistant and finds a family with three lovely daughters. He is allowed to spend the night there, and goes about deciding on which of the girls to suck dry, when he finds out that both of the girls of age are not virgins after all. They have both been shacking up with the stable boy, who is played by a guy with a thick-as-toast New York accent which seems completely incongruent to the almost unintelligible Euro-accent the girls and the rest of the family sport. Dracula eventually finds a fourth daughter, an older one, who is a virgin. He bites her, and makes her his bride. But it may be too late because Mario, the sexed-up stable boy, is on to the count and is out to kill him.

The film ends with a surprising amount of gore as Dracula and Mario square off. I was actually surprised by how bloody the film was throughout, but the copious amounts of flat-chested Euro-girl nudity weren't making the lame proceedings any better. There was some humor sprinkled through the film, but those bits were few and far between. There were far too many scenes of Mario's naked ass writhing, and old ladies talking about stuff. If I wanted to see Gosford Park, I would have rented that instead.

I don't want to sound too harsh though, because the film did delivery on the blood and nudity, but overall it felt like a Merchant Ivory film crossed with a little-known Hammer horror picture. Udo is actually not terrible as the Count, but the story doesn't give him much to do but wheel around in a wheelchair and vomit blood. I was sort of expecting something bizarro and hippie-like, but instead I got a straightforward horror drama. If you haven't seen it, don't rush out to do so, you're not missing anything. It was put together much better than I was expecting, and that might be why it didn't have any bite.

  - Jose Prendes


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