torsdag 3 maj 2012

The Vampire (จอมเมฆินทร์, 1985)

In 1973 Sombat Metanee starred in his only, I think, vampire movie. Since then it's considered a lost movie and the last pieces of film probably deteriorated many years ago. What we're left with is posters, lobby cards and the nice photo that I've added last in this review - but maybe most important, the 1985 remake starring Thailand's favourite baddie Rith Luecha. So I decided to take a look at that version, the first Thai vampire movie I ever seen. But first of all, The Vampire is only a title I made up. If I translate จอมเมฆินทร์ it's "Private Cloud", and I have no idea what that means! After discussed it with friends and some thinking hear at home and decided to use this generic title until someone suggests a better one.

A crazy scientist with an eye so lazy it literary hangs out from its socket somehow makes a dangerous vampire, maybe even Dracula (Rith Luecha) comes alive again. Dracula quickly kills the old sleazebag with a bloody spear through the throat and infects another man with the vampie disease, so he can have himself a vampire-slave. Now he wants young female meat and starts to attack women every night until the villagers (it's always villagers in these movies!) decides they have to do something. A holy woman, armed with powerful magic, sets out to kill Dracula once and for all!

This is a very fun and entertaining movie, even if I don't get all of the story. Rith Luecha is not bad at all as the nasty vampire and seem to have a lot of fun with his fangs and cape, and being able to suck the blood from young virgins. The director goes all the way with scary eyes, shadows and jump cuts to make Dracula disappear. It's a good old-fashioned vampire-movie with more interest in entertaining than maybe telling a good story. Except the spear through the throat and a few squibs (in Thai movies from the eighties they always find an excuse for some traditional gun-fighting) it's not really blood, but cozy and silly - just like I expected it to be.

What I miss is maybe a castle, to make it even more old-fashioned than it is already. They could have used the crazy scientist more, maybe made him a slave to the vampire or something - but he's fun while he's alive at least.

Out on VCD from Lepso - and believe it or not, it's the same movie on the discs as on the cover, which with a release from this certain company can be quite rare nowadays. The quality is OK crap-quality. It's possible to watch, but expect a nice brutal headache after ninty minutes of blurry and dark vampire-action.