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Blood of the Vampires
Curse of the Vampires

Philippines 1970
produced by
Hemisphere Entertainment
directed by Gerardo de Leon
starring Eddie Garcia, Amalia Fuentes, Romeo Vasquez, Mary Walter

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Always make sure of DVD-compatibility !!!
Terminally ill & incredibly rich Old Man Escodero tells his kids they are never to marry, and with his death his mansion is to be burned down. Why ? For he keeps his dead wife (Mary Walter) in the mansion's cellar, only she isn't all that dead but rather a vampire, & the old man wants to end the family-curse. But son Edoardo (Eddie Garcia), always the Mama's boy, goes to visit her in secret - never a good idea in a vampire movie - & is bitten by her as thanks for his efforts. 

Soon, he becomes a vampire too, prowling the countryside & raping & biting a girl. Then, he marries the girl (!) & makes her his slave by hypnotism. Meanwhile, old man Escodero & his mute servant finally kill Mama Escodero by a stake through the heart (one great scene has the servant drag the dead woman's body through the woods, a giant stake still sticking out of her chest.), but the old man himself is soon killed by Edoardo.

At the reading of his will, Edoardo falls out with his sister Leonore (Amalia Fuentes) & her fiance Daniel (Romeo Vasquez), for he doesn't want to burn down the mansion. Also, when Leonore & Daniel try to escape, Edoardo makes their hearse crash, killing Daniel in the process & having Leonore brought back to the mansion. But Daniel does come back as a ghost, haunting Edoardo, even fencing with him. Still, all that won't  help, Leonore is still bitten by her brother & his vampire minions, before that perfect medicine against vampirism (priests & villagers with torches) can put an end to the evill proceedings.

 

A - even by 1970's standard - very old-fashioned piece of vampire-cinema - but old fashioned in a good way. Its rather stupid story - which is very firmly rooted in catholizism, even for a vampire movie - relies more on creepy atmosphere than cheap sensationalism, & director de Leon achieves that by using strong primary colours - that would even put the golden age Hammer gothics to shame -, simple but weird lighting effects & authentic dungeon sets (& he knows how to use them), so not even the bad actors & the occasional lack of logic can ruin the overall effect of the movie. It might not be as good as de Leon's vastly underrated Blood Drinkers, but it's still worth a (good) look.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Tales to Chill
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Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
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Tales to Chill
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Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD