Club Vampire

Leave it to Roger Corman's New Horizons imprint to release an exploitative The Hunger rip-off a decade and a half late. Like The Hunger, Club Vampire features New Wave vampires, vampires who seem to have taken the whole Goth thing just a little too far. But while The Hunger's portrayal of the undead was stylistically impressive if thematically confused, Club Vampire's depiction is often hilariously inept. Style has always played a crucial role in horror films, but it's difficult to take any of these vampires seriously, seeing as how most of them look like unusually pale Echo And The Bunnymen roadies. John Savage's vampire protagonist, in particular, with his German army jacket, bare chest, and checkered flannel pants, bears a striking resemblance to an undead Adam Ant. Corman-produced films generally wear their derivativeness and disposability on their sleeves, and Club Vampire is no exception. Running a mere 77 minutes, it's an amateurish, intermittently entertaining low-budget epic about a single mother (Starr Andreeff) who is bitten by a vampire and hooks up with Savage to avoid being killed by his ghoulish vampire family. Club Vampire begins with a five-minute montage sequence featuring exotic dancers prancing about lasciviously, a segment that quickly illustrates how many new ideas writer-director Andy Ruben (Stripped To Kill, Poison Ivy) brings to the project. Club Vampire does feature a scene in which Savage and the midget from Twin Peaks rap about being vampires, but unfortunately, such transcendently tacky moments are few and far between. For the most part, Club Vampire seems to exist solely to provide Corman with some sort of Halloween-themed product, no matter how lame or embarrassing that product might be.

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