Chi o Suu Bara
Evil of Dracula
The Bloodthirsty Roses / Bloodsucking Rose
Fumio Tanaka for Toho
directed by Michio Yamamoto
starring Toshio Kurosawa, Mariko Mochizuki, Kunie Tanaka, Shin Kishida, Katsuhiko Sasaki, Mio Ohta, Mika Katsuragi, Keiko Aramaki, Yunosuke Ito, Yasuko Agawa, Susugu Katayama, Haruo Suzuki, Tadao Futami, Midori Takei
written by Ei Ogawa, Masaru Takesue, music by Riichiro Manabe, special effects by Teruyoshi Nakano
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Professor Shiraki (Toshio Kurosawa) comes to work at a boarding
school in the country, which he's to take over as principal the next term - but right the first night which he spends at the
(Shin Kishida) house he grows rather suspicious of the whole school, the
situation not made any better by his nightmares about vampires and the
fact that the principal keeps his dead wife (Mika Katsuragi) in a coffin in the basement.
next day, he learns from the school doctor Shimimura (Kunie Tanaka) that
the whole place is under some kind of shock after a girl has disappeared
not too long ago. Soon enough, another girl, Kyoko (Keiko Aramaki), disappears, but
returns a short time later, like in trance - and her breast bears
bitemarks. The doctor is quick to fill Shiraki in on a legend about
vampires in the region, and the two quickly come to the conclusion that
the principal himself has to be the head vampire - and becoming a vampire comes with the
job of being principal apparently, which is why a former contender went crazy
rather than taking over the school actually.
Eventually, the summer
holidays approach, and all girls boarding at the school return home, all
but three: Kyoko, still in a trance, Yukiko (Mia Ota) and Kumi (Mariko Mochizuki) - and Shiraki and the
doctor have taken it upon themselves to guard the girls with their lives -
but they have taken a bigger bite than they can swallow, as soon the
principal attacks the school and takes Kyoko with him, kills the
doctor following him and manages to bite Yukiko without anyone even
Thing is, the actual target of the principal and his undead
wife's attacks is actually Shiraki, as they need his body with him being
the designated principal ...
Like the other films of the
Trilogy, this one's more rooted in Western genre movies than
Japanese horror traditions, and this one again borrows heavily from
horrors, and not only their vampire movies. And while the result might not
be wholly original, it's nevertheless a nice blend of murder mystery (with
traces of the giallo genre), ghost story and vampire movie (more than a
little influenced by Bram Stoker's Dracula)
that uses a deliberately slow pace to build up tension and atmosphere -
and for the most part, the film works quite well. Sure, the Western-style
vampire with a cape looks a little out of place in a Japanese movie, and
some of the film's plot elements, twists and effects are childish at best,
but overall this one works quite well as a traditional vampire flick,
nothing great perhaps, but a very entertaining trip down memory lane.