Monday, February 6, 2012

Vampire Circus (1972)

Human fangs ripping throats - no sawdust can soak up the torrent of blood!

You know the saying: Back in my day vampires sucked blood not cock? Well I'm not sure if that's necessarily true if "your day" was back in 1972, because Vampire Circus continues the Hammer tradition of frilly-shirt wearing, limp-wristed English dandies as incarnations of the lords of the undead.

Don't get me wrong, Hammer vampires aren't all like this.  Christopher Lee's portrayal of a sophisticated yet carnal Count Dracula gives the impression that he'd just as soon dry-fist the ladies as suck their blood...  Or do both at the same time, because he was convincing as the embodiment of evil.  Lee's Dracula enjoyed inflicting pain for his own personal gain and that came across on screen.  These other Hammer vampires like Robert Tayman and Anthony Higgins in Vampire Circus and Damien Thomas's Count Karnstein in Twins of Evil prance around and make pouty, scowly faces and we're supposed to believe they're personifications of pure evil.  I'm not convinced.  And after having said that one might think that Vampire Circus is complete shite, but that's not the case at all.

A little village in Eastern Europe thought it had eradicated its vampire problem after an angry mob stormed the castle of the bloodsucking Count Mitterhaus, drove a stake through his heart and burned his home to the ground.  For you see, this fiendish nobleman had been abducting the town's women and little girls, giving them some of his fluid and then draining them of theirs.  But before he succumbed to the piece of wood buried in his chest, he cursed the town with a plague and vowed he would return and take the lives of the town's children someday.

"Someday" comes 15 years later when a traveling circus manages to break through the quarantine and set up shop in the village.  The performers in this traveling show have supernatural powers like the ability to shape-shift and jump really high, and they use these abilities to manipulate the townsfolk to do their bidding and by "do their bidding" I mean have sex and then die, or sometimes just die without the sex part first.  And so, these evil circus performers use the blood of the village children that they are secretly slaughtering to raise Count Mitterhaus back to "life" or whatever you call it when undead vampires come back after being staked through the heart.

Vampire Circus certainly has the feel and atmosphere of a Hammer horror film but it also has more gore and significantly more boobage than one would expect from Hammer, and the quality of said boobage is excellent.  Of course, I think this is a good thing and it's too bad Hammer Studios didn't have the opportunity incorporate more blood and boobies into their films before they were forced to stop making movies because of financial difficulties.

Overall, I do like this movie quite a bit and except for Robert Tayman's portrayal of Count Mitterhaus I can't think of any significant faults in this film.  Not that my opinion really matters anyway, or that I'm competent enough to find faults in a film.  I guess what I'm saying is, Robert Tayman's role as the Count is the only part of this movie that bothered me.  The rest is good.

Wait!  I thought of something else that bothered me.  Lynne Frederick, the hottest actress in the film, never gets naked.

Violence Rating: 3 out of 5
Booby Rating: 2.5 out of 5


Vampire Circus

7 comments:

R said...

I have to watch this movie, nice review!

Sub-Radar-Mike said...

They don't make movies quite like this anymore... yet another movie poster I'm tempted to get printed full-size.

Henry said...

Doesn't get naked? NOPE. I'm outta here.

Shockgrubz said...

I am a fan of the style of cover-art. Good write-up.

D4 said...

When women get naked and the one I WANT to get naked decides not to, I get a little upset. I was just fine with the prancing Dracula, but, come on. We'll see.

That Bastard From Bellingham said...

I'm fairly certain all the awesome bewbage and the whole "You don't get to see Lynne Frederick's awesome nudes" was just an elaborate 70's troll.

Seriously, get ya worked up with delicious whored'erves, titties galore, then when it comes time to the main course you're told "NONONO, you're full, all this prime Lynne rib is goin' elsewheres!"

Sounds like somethin' I'd do. Just sayin'.

G said...

2.5 on the boobie rating....dunno...on the other hand vampires are always cool

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