I’ve watched just over 30 vampire flicks for this project so far and in that time have witnessed all types and kinds. From the lesbian kind to , to the robotic kind, to the kind Bon Jovi like to hunt down, vampires have been depicted in just about every way imaginable. Tonight’s film is another one of those incarnations, this time in the way of Robert Quarry – a lesser known, but equally entertaining version of the Christopher Lee, Bela Lugosi variety. In other words a classic vampire. The catch being he lives in 1970’s Los Angeles.
Other than just living in L.A. for the beautiful weather, babes and power lunches; Count Yorga uses it as a place to practice his much accomplished séance skills. And, naturally, his draining of blood skills. The victims being mostly hot, naïve women who have boyfriends. The boyfriends don’t take kindly to their women being sucked to death, but first must figure out the mystery behind who or what the Count really is.
The film was originally going to be a softcore erotic porno vamp flick, but was curiously edited into basically a PG-13 (by today’s standards) flick. It spawned a sequel and Yorga was in the running to be an adversary to Dr. Phibes in a film that was never made. Pretty good for a film that had four crew members and basically no budget.
Count Yorga is an interesting character to say the least. Quarry’s performance almost baffled me. Most vampires, especially the kind of the classical nature, tend to be smooth talking characters that possess the power of words. Not Yorga. He uses stilted dialogue and rarely says more than one sentence to any reply. A lot of scenes play out like this:
Guy: “Do you believe in werewolves?”
Followed by an awkward pause.
Guy: This brandy is good. Do you drink?
Even longer pause.
It actually ends up being quite funny and off kilter enough to give Yorga a distinct presence in vampire lore.
The guys in the film hatch a brilliant plot to out the Count as a vampire. It’s fool proof, really. Their brilliant idea involves going over to the Yorga’s house late at night and being bad house guests. The thought being that Yorga would eventually have to run to his coffin when the sun comes up. In the mean time the gents would get drunk and make super awkward conversation. It’s quite the scene and Quarry is at his absolute weirdest. If there is one reason to see this film, this campy moment is it. Well, maybe the scene involving a chick eating a cat is a good reason as well.
Final verdict: Interesting enough that I am going to pop in the sequel and watch it right now.
Snore Factor: ZZZ