Directed by: Richard Griffin
Written by: Richard Griffin & Sandeep Parikh
Starring: Patrick Piu, Danielle Lozeau, Ashley Eaton & Ross Kelly
Reviewed by: Brett H.
ďHow the fuck am I supposed to make a comeback without my cock?!Ē
Freddie Mercury belted out ĒWho wants to live forever?" many times in his career and after spending almost a quarter century watching horror films, I occasionally ask myself this same question when viewing the latest vampiric happening bestowed upon me. Itís no surprise that I love vampire films, Iíd probably consider them my favorite monster due to diversity of the beast; few, if any ghouls can match the broad range the character can cover. From legitimately classy to trendy to comedic to bonafide badass, there really isnít anything the vampire canít or hasnít captured. Like the creature itself, vampire films remain eternal by growing with the horror audience since the very beginning. On the indie spectrum, vampires have flew to even more unique heights in the hands of off the wall, devoted filmmakers. The latest from Camp Motion Pictures is low budget schlockmeister Richard Griffinís spicy blend of Bordello of Blood and Lost Boys: The Thirst, Pretty Dead Things.
The 70s were a great time to be in porn, well, at least if your co-stars didnít just happen to be immortal bloodsuckers looking for a much different money shot than youíre willing to dish out. And still going after all these years they are, biting and killing to their little heartís desires. But one night all the good times come to a halt when a sexy little vampiress dines on a lonely pizza boy and lets him drink her blood so he may be immortal and come back to get the piece of her action he was promised. Pizza boy doesnít take the bite lightly, opting to train minions and hunt down those who gave him this immortal hell, leaving a bloody trail from one end of Providence to the other.
I know what youíre thinking Ė the pizza delivery boy getting action from the hot chick at the sleazy motel is artís greatest gift to mankind. I couldnít agree more, Pretty Dead Things sounds stunning on paper. But check your late night Skinemax delusions of grandeur at the door, these hot little vam-porn starlets are much, much too shy to take their own clothes off, or much of anyone elseís. In fact, thereís about as much homo-eroticism abound than the hot girl action most of us are hoping for. Had it not been for this fact (the lack of nude chicks; gay vampires need love too) and normal low budget irks, I might have really enjoyed Pretty Dead Things. Again, I know what youíre thinking Ė you donít need nudity to make a good horror film, right? Truer words have never been spoken, unless you happen to be making a horror/comedy regarding clubbing vampires in the cheesy porn industry.
With that out of the way, allow me to praise the many Pretty perks of this rather humorous affair; there is a boatload of blood and cinematography is oftentimes right out of Argentoís Three Mothers Trilogy (or at least two-thirds of it) with a fast paced, multi-layered story that make the run time feel even leaner than its 90 minutes. Numerous odes to classics like Re-Animator and familiar faces from indie gems like Poultrygeist are good for some grins, while goofy porn-spoofing dialogue made me laugh out loud on two occasions. What can be funnier than a severed vampire head in a pan begging for someone to bring him has body back so he can do porn? The main character to latch onto is Jennifer Bond (Danielle Lozeau) who is the vampire with a moral crisis and was separated from the love of her life after being turned. She wound up a 50 year old vamp in a teenage body and her XXX-director lover still isnít over her 30 years after the fact. Sappy BS be damned, this isnít heading to a romantic coming together of souls, but a porn reunion the world is dying to see. Or they think theyíll be, for some reason.
Campís DVD looks pretty good, better than your average modern indie example and really shows off the 16 x 9 enhanced coloring book cinematography. Sound is clear and special features include a commentary and most importantly, Pretty Dead Things is presented along with another Griffin film, Beyond the Dunwich Horror in a two-disc double feature of macabre. If youíre a fan of vampires, over the top performances, blood and indie atmosphere and nothing else is on, then Pretty Dead Things is an ideal candidate to quench your thirst for vampires. Skin is just a little too light from the slutty vampire chick who should be dying to lose her top, but if youíre in the market for a good hearted vampire in love with a porn filminí man, go ahead and put a few dollars in the pockets of the independents and Rent it!
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