I did a couple of “short takes” on this new disasterpiece for a couple of different publications; here, for the first time, I’ve amalgamated them into one piece.
Despite a track record of some of the worst movies ever created, “Dr.” Uwe Boll (House of the Dead, Alone in the Dark) somehow continues to obtain the movie rights to popular video games and film them on the cheap. His latest, Bloodrayne, is based on a game that pits a vampire secret agent against mutant-manufacturing Nazis; Boll and screenwriter Guinevere Turner (American Psycho) have decided to make his movie a prequel set in medieval times.
By “medieval times,” of course, we mean that particular era of European history that goes unmentioned in most history books, when Transylvanians had either American accents or laughably fake English ones, noblemen dressed like either Mozart or King Charles II, and every woman had free access to breast implants. Vampire kings ruled the land, and some of them were stupid enough to install windows in their castles despite the fact that sunlight is absolutely fatal to them. And a human-vampire hybrid called a Dampir, resembling an impossibly hot fashion model (Kristanna “The Terminatrix” Loken), was able to kick all kinds of ass, yet inexplicably managed to be held captive by an obese circus ringmaster for years.
Boll does all his casting at the last minute, a technique that enables him to snag big-name actors without giving them much time to think things over. Here, he has obtained Michael Madsen, Ben Kingsley, Billy Zane, Udo Kier, Meat Loaf, Michelle Rodriguez, Michael Pare, and Matt Davis, not all of whom seem fully in on the joke. Madsen sports a mullet, Kingsley looks like Salieri, Rodriguez pathetically attempts an English accent, Meat Loaf wears a powdered wig, blood gushes from slashed throats, and the Terminatrix shows her breasts. Honestly, what more do you want from a medieval vampire movie?
Throats are slit, bosoms are bared, and though the plot makes no sense, the film is technically competent, which is a first for Dr. Boll. His name strikes fear into the hearts of many moviegoers, but he is gradually getting slightly better, having apparently learned, at long last, the importance of both good lighting and pointing the camera at the actors. The production values found in Romania are nice, and the cast are enjoyably goofy, some apparently without realizing it (Billy Zane appears to be in a completely different movie, playing a character who’s elaborately set up with no pay-off whatsoever). It’d be a stretch to call the movie good, but at least it’s fun-bad.