Saturday, September 3, 2011

Vampiros Mexicanos: The Vampire's Coffin

Once more into the South of the Border, my friends!  The sequel to El Vampiro/The Vampire is El Ataud Del Vampiro/The Vampire's Coffin.  What is new in this film?  As I mentioned in my teaser, a bit aspect of the film is *influenced* by 1953's House of Wax.  I guess that's not really a big deal, since that film is itself a remake of Mystery in the Wax Museum.  The vampire returns through a pretty familiar way, but also gets some new tricks up its sleeves.  It's hard to imagine why he didn't use them in the last movie.  Aside from that silliness, the film is a worthy sequel and worth checking out.  To see why, read on.  Whatever you do, don't open...
The 'crazy woman' from the first film is keeping close guard over the titular object.  Evidently, she knows that he can be revived about as easily as you can reheat yesterday's dinner!
Some graverobbers manage to steal the body and sell it to a doctor.  Conveniently enough, the man works with Abel Salazar, who has moved on from dressing like the guy from Casablanca.  He's not pleased with the plan to study the Vampire's body.
In spite of his protests, the Vampire indeed comes back to life.  He quickly finds a new hiding place in a Theater and gets some flunkies.  As you can see, he's very excited about it.
One of the Vampire's new powers is hypnosis via a medallion that I can't recall him wearing before.  He also wants to make this woman his concubine.  Who hasn't been there?
The House of Wax aspect comes from a good chunk of the movie taking place in a Wax Museum.  It's a bit more low-budget than the famous film.  However, this film does feature Torgo from Manos: The Hands of Fate.
Invisibility is another new trick in his arsenal.  That seems like it would have been useful as hell in the last film.  It makes you wonder why he doesn't just turn invisible when he goes inside the coffin!
Instead of the sword fight finale, we get a goofy bit involving our hero trying to hit the Vampire with a spear while he's flying around in bat form.  What kind of museum has real, working weapons in it?!?
In a pretty neat effect, the dead Vampire Bat turns back into a Vampire.  My question is this: how do you take him out of the wall without just resurrecting him again?  Since they seem to have only made two of these, that question will never be answered.  The End.
Twice shy!  The plot of this film is a bit more fun than that last once, since it had to do the usual set-up work.  That is one advantage of sequels is that you can just skip past all that and go into the action.  The movie doesn't quite take advantage of that fully, however, as they make use of the House of Wax stuff.  It's neat that they took the Vampire into the city and all, but I feel like they could have done a little more with it.  This is no Vampire in Brooklyn though- thank God!  I do like the Vampire's new powers and abilities as they help freshen things up for this film.  The atmosphere here is great and the pacing is still quite good.  Much like the last film, if you like your Vampire films old-school, you'll love this film.  Take us away, dancers that appear to be from another film...
Next up, I begin a week of Sci-Fi/Action films.  The first one is a Seagal film about vampires from outer space...I mean, drug addicts.  Stay tuned...

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