Blacula, Bloodrayne, Underworld 3: Ten vampire movies (almost?) worse than Twilight Eclipse

Categories: Lists

Transylvania 6-5000

Even the dreamy Jeff Goldblum can't save this trashy tale of two tabloid reporters who travel to Transylvania in search of Frankenstein's Monster. What they find are wacky hijinks in abundance, a convoluted series of plot twists involving the wolfman, a vampire, and the swamp thing, and more sub-par jokes than a Mencia special.

Transylvania 6-5000 is terribly acted, and featured production values so unacceptable, that critic Leonard Maltin was moved to give only a three-word review: "Transylvania 6-5000...stinks!" We admire his restraint in not using the more vampire-appropriate "sucks."

Dracula 3000

You can tell a movie is gonna be awesome when a) it has a number in the title to indicate a space-future setting, b) it's released direct-to-video, and c) Coolio's on the cast list. Dracula 3000 doesn't disappoint, from the low-budget sci-fi effects to the ridiculous premise.

A future space salvage ship finds a bunch of future space coffins, and because it's a movie, someone decides to open them up. Luckily that person is Coolio, so he spends the rest of the movie as a vampire, at least until he mercifully dies from a future space pool cue through the heart.

What follows is more or less the plot to Jason X: A bunch of generic character archetypes try not to die while being chased around a claustrophobic ship by bloodthirsty monsters.

It does have one of the better endings in trashy space-horror lore: piloting the ship into the heart of a star in order to kill the vampires and save earth, the android love interest reveals she has been programmed as a sex-bot just in time to provide a few moments of bliss for the generically hunky lead before the suicide mission ends. Bow-chicka-bow-bow!

Queen of the Damned

Not to speak ill of the dead, but Aaliyah's last movie blows chunks. Another Anne Rice flick, it comes with all the overblown frippery and romance-novel airs that mark Rice's Mary Sue writing style. The acting is wooden, the plot tedious, the special effects underwhelming.

To clue you in on how bad the plot is: the movie opens with the vampire Lestat (yes, the same one from Interview) being woken up from a long sleep by the sound of a rock band. Naturally he decides to take over the band and become a famous goth rocker, which these days is like saying you're well known in the competitive pinochle circuit. It just goes downhill from there.

What makes the whole mess even worse is that the only reason to watch Queen of the Damned is to see Aaliyah stalking around in the vampire equivalent of the Slave Leia costume--but perving on a dead lady makes us feel so uncomfortable that we can't even properly enjoy the skin on display.

Underworld 3

We'll admit it. We actually liked the first Underworld movie. We like blue movies, and also movies with hot ladies in skin-tight latex. Guns and excellent special effects help too. But there's only so much other awful crap we're willing to put up with in order to get to the good stuff, and the third Underworld offering is swimming in awful crap.

First, no Kate Beckinsale. It's not like she's God's gift to acting, but she did hold together the first two movies and was really only outclassed by Bill Nighy, who could probably play a potted plant and make the role entertaining to watch. Making an Underworld movie without her was a huge mistake, because the leftover cast lacks a standout personality to carry the movie, and the ensemble cast just blends together into a mediocre soup of unresolved conflict.

One of the glaring issues is that that Underworld thrived in a sleek, near-future setting where metal and brick collide and gunfights in subway stations are the norm. Underworld 3 throws us into an alternate-history medieval setting, and the signature style choices translate to the fantasy-esque set pieces about as well as Google translates between Mandarin Chinese and English.

Vampire in Brooklyn

Oh Eddie Murphy, is there any movie you can't ruin? Then again, Vampire in Brooklyn pretty much came pre-ruined. A modern blaxploitation flick, it follows the story of Max, the sole survivor of a Caribbean vampire clan, who travels to Brooklyn tracking a half-vampire woman who holds the key to his race's survival. He's gotta get with her in order to save the day (cue funk music).

Unfortunately Max sort of sucks at handling the ladies, and so he has to resort to saving the love interest from being killed by a taxi cab in order to win a date. Just as our hero is about to score, he gets a stake through the heart and somehow everyone else ends up living happily ever after.

The mediocrity is only deepened by the obvious disregard with which the script-writers viewed the project; crappy quips and terrible gags abound - including one endcap joke about the endowment of black vampires. Real classy, people.

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