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DRACULA 3000
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Reviewed by: Pat Torfe

Directed by: Darrell Roodt

Starring:
Casper Van Dien
Erika Eleniak
Coolio

Movie:  
star star star star
Extras:  
star star star star
Overall:  
star star star star
What's it about
In the future, a group of desperate actors aboard the Mother III on a routine interstellar mission, discover the drifting off-world space transporter Demeter, which was reported missing 100 years earlier outbound from Transylvania in the Carpathian Galaxy (no, I sh*t you not). Hoping to get rich quick (since they really couldn’t make money pounding various-shaped blocks of wood into similarly-shaped holes), Van Helsing (Casper Van Dien) and his crew board the ship to find coffins and Count Dra-, I mean, Count Orlock (British actor Langley Kirkwood) lurking about. For the story’s sake, the Demeter becomes detached from Mother III and all hell breaks loose. In other words, you waste 1.5 hours in a bad way.
Is it good movie?

Where do I begin? Not to be confused with being a sequel to DRACULA 2000, this movie is in a class of its own. Usually the one that had to stay after school. How anyone involved with the film could find work after this is beyond me. While director Darrell Roodt managed to get the job directing PREY, one wonders if he’d look back 20 years from now and ask himself if DRACULA 3000 was a good career move.

Speaking of good career moves, Casper Van Dien has been making a career of missing them after STARSHIP TROOPERS and instead going for stinkers like PYTHON and SKELETON MAN. Van Dien’s character in the film is a descendant of the original Van Helsing, which is apparently the film’s big twist. Don’t worry, they don’t do anything spectacular with it. Being involved in a film with Coolio doesn’t help, either. Not content with having a crappy rap career, Coolio apparently wants a crappy movie career. With lines like, ‘I ever tell you how many times I see you and want to ejaculate all over your bazonkas? Or the times I stayed up late, high as a kite in a non-gravitational atmosphere, while I stroked my anaconda and dreamed about your snow-white ass?’, it’s a wonder that someone hasn’t handed him an Oscar. Or a pink slip. His character, 187, is supposed to have an IQ of 187. So that explains his street slang and penchant for being high!

As for the rest of the cast, you have former Baywatch babe Erika Eleniak and former pro wrestler Tommy ‘Tiny’ Lister (aka Zeus, if you’re wondering) doing their darndest to give credible performances, but failing in the end. Alexandra Kamp is the ship’s navigator, and the less said of her the better, save for the fact that her character’s name is Mina (do I need to say what happens with her?). Udo Kier drops in to get a paycheck and his appearance leads one to wonder if the guy really has too much time on his hands. Then there’s Langley Kirkwood, who does the worst portrayal of a vampire in a film since, well, anyone. Slicked-back hair? Check. Black cape? Check. Pasty white face? Check. Scary enough to qualify as the lord of vampires? If you were scared of pocket lint, even you would find this guy ho-hum. How this is supposed to be an adaptation of the Bram Stoker novel in space is beyond me.

Script-wise, the film is the equivalent of toilet paper: Covered in excrement, and obviously they ran out of it because everything is crap by the half hour mark. Crew arguing about stuff that does nothing to advance the plot, Orlock running away because of some offscreen sound, gore that is the opposite of gore (driest vampire flick I’ve seen in a while), the stupidest ending I’ve ever seen (you won’t believe how this thing ends), but the kicker is the fact that Dracula (or Count Orlock, since the filmmakers couldn’t get the rights to use the Bram Stoker character) is from another planet (the aforementioned Transylvania) which race died out year ago, and Orlock wants to get to Earth in order to feed and repopulate his race.

As well, he apparently he is the same Dracula who was on Earth already once back in the late 1800’s, where he was defeated by the original Abraham Van Helsing. So, are they implying that Dracula was once on Earth, was defeated by Van Helsing, then somehow returned to his home planet only for his race to die out, and now wants to return to Earth? This made my IQ drop 10 points, put it that way. Simply put, the only good thing to come out of this film (besides the end credits) is the DVD art, which looks somewhat like H.R. Giger. That’s about as close to a compliment this ‘film’ will get.
Video / Audio
Video: Relatively clean look, though artefacts appeared in some scenes. The 3D stuff looked okay for a made-for-TV movie (the Demeter looks like a barbeque grill, complete with rust). Overall, the anamorphic widescreen transfer was acceptable.

Audio: The 2.0 sound, like the transfer, was okay. Volume is a little low, but does the job. Just.
The Extras
It had none.
Last Call
Probably the most expensive beer coaster you’ll ever buy (or won’t, if you’re smart), the film belongs in the lining to a bird cage. Why anyone would want to see this film (aside from Ms. Eleniak) is beyond me. In the end, like Dracula, this film’s only job is to suck and make you feel violated in some way. Avoid like a sledgehammer to the nuts.
ARROW IN THE HEAD'S RATING SYSTEM
star star star star I'D BUTCHER MY FAMILY TO SEE THIS AGAIN
star star star HANG ME BUT I DUG IT A LOT
star star AN OK WAY TO KILL TWO HOURS
star JUST SLING AN ARROW IN MY HEAD AND LET ME DIE IN PEACE

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