Bloodstone: Subspecies II
Director: Ted Nicolaou
Written by: Ted Nicolaou
Weapon of Choice: Dagger
Based upon: nothing
Other movies in this series:
Bloodlust: Subspecies III
Subspecies 4: Bloodstorm
Rish Outfield's reviews
Recently, I've gotten into something of a horror movie funk. It seemed that every movie was either terrible, awful, or terribly awful. So, I didn't expect to break the cycle with Subspecies 2. It's been a while since tyranist and I saw the first film. As I recall, it wasn't too good. At least my review wasn't very positive. But either my standards and intolerance have really diminished, or Subspecies 2 was a great movie.
In Transylvania, American cutie Michelle (who I don't remember from the first film, but ah well) has been bitten by a vampire, and has to endure the internal tug-of-war between her dark new desires and her humanity. She calls on her sister to help her, who enlists the aid of a couple of cops and a Hungarian professor. Meanwhile, evil, spider-fingered vampire Radu (Anders Hove) is stalking Michelle for the powerful Bloodstone she possesses . . . and I think (you can admit it, Radu, we won't judge you) because he likes her.
While it wasn't really scary, and wasn't as dirty as some of Full Moon's releases, it had something unheard-of in the last batch of videos I've watched--a good script. Radu, so dim-witted and slobbery in the original, is actually intelligent and well-written here. I found myself liking him and enjoying his dialogue (which may have been intentional), even though I didn't dislike the heroes. Denice Duff as Michelle does a good job, and looks nice, even when covered with blood. Radu's mom (played by Pamela Gordon) is very, very cool. Unfortunately, Melanie Shatner appears here as Michelle's sister (while she doesn't suck like in Cthulhu Mansion, she ain't exactly Meryl Streep), though she's kinda cute from time to time.
The tiny subspecies are only in the first minute of the film, then never seen again. This also featured some gruesome, but impressive makeup effects and a really literal blood fountain. There were a couple of weak moments in the film, but by and large, this is a real keeper. It gave me faith when mine was starting to shake. I might have found the cliffhanger ending a letdown, but the film was immediately followed by a preview for Bloodlust: Subspecies III, filmed at the same time. And I consider myself lucky to have a copy lying around.
I'd Recommend It To: You good old horror movie fans, especially of vampires.
Note: Even the standard Full Moon documentary at the end of the tape was more fun and more interesting than usual. So I may be biased.
The tyranist's thoughts
I wouldn't qualify myself as a vampire film connoisseur, but I do enjoy this particular sub-genre quite a bit. Unfortunately, it seems to have been run into the ground a little with the growing goth/vampire movement and the subsequent desire to make vampire hero movies. The Subspecies series is a little bit of a throwback to the old vampire stile, but in the second entry we get the beginning of that new goth tradition. Fortunately, this is handled very, very well and instead of the vampire hero giving in to the only too glamourous night life there is still horror afoot.
Anders Hove is back as Radu and does a very nice job of portraying the evil but distantly human vampire. Often I found myself wondering at his character. His lusts and thoughts were somewhat the same as mine, but he is never portrayed in a totally positive light. Kudos to Anders and Ted Nicolaou for maintaining the integrity.
The two girls arent' bad either. Well, Denice Duff isn't. Melanie Shatner is virtually a cardboard cutout and I have to believe that this is because of her lack of ability rather than anyone else's fault. Too bad she'll be back for episode 3. Ms. Duff, on the other hand, plays a wonderfully confused and frightened young vampire who remembers enough of her humanity to not want to be the way she is. It probably helps that she is attractive.
Filmed again in Hungaria (in fact, I think all of them were so maybe I won't mention it anymore) the setting was perfect. Away from the glitz of American cities, the struggle between humanity and vampirism was lent more of an air of reality. I thought that the scenes in Bucarest were quite nice and added an age to the movie that would have been otherwise unachievable.
The series is definitely getting better with this entry.
Total Skulls: 16
|Rips off earlier film|
|Horror film showing on TV/in theater in movie|
|Future celebrity appears|
|Former celebrity appears|
|Girl unnecessarily gets naked|
|Death associated with sex|
|Unfulfilled promise of nudity|
|Characters forget about threat|
|Power is cut|
|Phone lines are cut|
|Someone investigates a strange noise|
|Someone runs up stairs instead of going out front door|
|Camera is the killer|
|Victims cower in front of a window/door|
|Victim locks self in with killer|
|Victim running from killer inexplicably falls|
|Toilet stall scene|
|Car stalls or won't start|
|Cat jumps out|
|Stupid discovery of corpse|
|No one believes only witness|
|Crazy, drunk, old man knows the truth|
|Warning goes unheeded|
|Music detracts from scene|
|Death in first five minutes|
|x years before/later|
|Dark and stormy night|
|Killer doesn't stay dead|
|Killer wears a mask|
|Killer is in closet|
|Killer is in car with victim|
|Villain is more sympathetic than heroes|
|Blood spatters - camera, wall, etc.|
|Poor death effect|
|No one dies at all|
|Little kid lamely survives|
|Dog/Pet miraculously survives|
|"It was all a dream" ending|
|Unbelievably happy ending|
|Unbelievably crappy ending|
|What the hell?|