Monday, August 01, 2005
Bloodsuckers! (A SCI-FI channel original movie)
As someone who loves both vampires and science fiction, I felt it was my duty to watch Bloodsuckers (a science fiction channel original movie). In a nutshell, vampires are the dominant species we encounter in outer space, and our heros are a rag-tag band of science fiction stock antiheros whose job it is to hunt down and destroy the aboriginal vamps to make the universe safe for our cultural imperialism and irresponsible environmental policies. You think I'm joking about that last part? I wish I were. S P O I L E R S The main villain of the movie is a woman who leads a group of humans who are sympathetic to the vampires. She and her crew act as a kind of vampire-loving jihad who sabotage human colonies and space stations alike so the vampires can swoop in past the defenses and munch on the humans -- (no discussion for us truly skiffy folks for a) why the alien vampires from space even have a taste for human flesh/blood and why they can metabolize it or b) what happened to whatever alternate indigenous species said vampires must have munched into extinction before meeting us). Her main motivation for going traitor on the human race is the above, almost verbatim. And, yes, she's also a vegetarian. The vampires were distressingly more zombie-like than actual alien cultures. They quite literally went "blah-blah!" and wagged their tongues while dismembering various victims. Also, apparently due to the human race's (and, specifically American) cultural imperialism, they ALL dressed like biker/goths, complete with studded leather. The only vaguely interesting vampire was the one that was part of the human vampire-killing crew. Psychic and into Tantric sex, she was actually, as she explained later, a dhympr -- the sexual offspring of a two, in this case, turned-from-human vampires. She could have been interesting had the writers made more of her story, IMHO. But, other than having some humanity instilled in her from her parents, we really don't know why she's on our side, especially considering the abuse she puts up with from the crew while she drinks her microwaved plasma from a medical bag. Unfortunately, she's not even vaguely conflicted about being a vampire as far as I could tell, despite the fact that she should be embarrassed to speak the same language as the evil sock puppet of doom that the crew meets up with at one point. (Too hard to explain.) The crew held a few surprises. The annoying rookie beta male side-kick who provided the useful character to give all the infodumps to (as you know, bob, this particular species of vampires can be killed simply by "bleeding out" [aka any old puncture wound, like a bullet, instead of needing a stake to the heart] and travels in large packs) ended up being the captain, because the movie was filmed so on the cheap that they couldn't afford their major B-list star, Joe Lando (of "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman") for the entire two hours of the film. I will admit to being mildly surprised when they killed off their hard-drinkin', vampire hatin' alpha male in the first 45 minutes. Though it was probably a good move, because I wasn't sure how much of his "let's waste these cockroaches" dialogue I could take -- though, unfortunately, the extra-butch female Asian (with lavender hair, so we know it's the future,) crew member picked up the slack for him. Bloodsuckers was billed as Buffy meets Star Trek. Ah, if only. Speaking of Joss Whedon, however, as the crew milled about on the starship I kept having flashbacks to Firefly. Does anyone know? Did Joss loan out Serenity for this drek of a film? I feel I should come back to my theme about the whiteness of space, but I'm not sure I care enough about this movie to be relatively impressed that we saw at least one black vampire (especially since I'm not sure its an honor to be among the blah-blah! aliens.) The only other member of the crew (besides the Asian woman) with any kind of implied ethnicity was Roman, the slacker space cowboy. His name suggests he might be Russian or Ukrainian, though there was nothing about him other than that which gave any sense of ethnic identity. As a final comment, all I can say is: as stupid and dimwitted as these alien vampires appeared, there should have been no real challenge or conflict for the vampire slayers. The fact that there was says a lot about how bad this movie really was.