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Dracula 3: Legacy (2005)
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Patrick Lussier

Starring:
Jason Scott Lee/Ufizzi
Jason London/Luke
Diane Neal/Elizabeth
Rutger Hauer/Dracula
7 10
PLOT-CRUNCH
On the heels of the “Dracula 2: Ascension” cliffhanger, witty Luke (London) and half-vamp, half-priest, all-asswhopper Ufizzi (Lee), travel through a vampire ravaged Romania with the intent of saving Luke’s chickadee Julia (Wescourt) and finding Dracula’s (Hauer) pad to bury his fanged derriere once and for all. Get the whip, the blades, a six-pack and the stakes...it's vamp exterminating time…Ufizzi style!
THE LOWDOWN

Only through God’s forgiveness, I can truly die. And I wonder, are you truly ready to forgive me?-- Dracula

"Dracula 2000" was a very loose and modern retelling of the classic Bram Stoker tale. Its sequel, "Dracula 2: Ascension", was a claustrophobic, character-driven vamp opus. "Dracula 3: Legacy", which will be upon us later this year (tentative straight-to-video August 2004 release) daringly took the series in an all new direction, resulting in one hell of a rousing adventure.

This party favor worked on many levels. First, as a clever buddy picture with the humorous banter between the straight guy Luke (London) and too-kool-for-recess Ufizzy (Lee) hitting the spot. The two lads shared groovy chemistry and that made it easy for me to get attached to them. It also helped a lot that their characters were extremely well written with Uffizi, in particular, sticking out via his various internal struggles. I was right there with the man and feeling it! You gotta love good screenwriting! THANK YOU! The flick also punched in hard as a compelling genre treat with all of the required sugar tossed into the blender for our drinking pleasure. We get ample gore, decapitations, dismemberments, female tatas and more female tatas (that female vamp feeding orgy rocked!)...it was all there and then some!

Action-wise this one went “Hi-ho Silver, away” on my bootie with a slew of exciting rumbles filling the screen. If like me, you craved seeing more Ufizzy damage in "Dracula 2", fear not because the vamp-priest cleans house here more efficiently than any Pest Control douche bag ever could. Wait till you see him fight a vampire who’s mounted on especially long stilts! That scene was one for the books! And what’s a ping-pow-ping adventure without a love story present to wash all of the violence down with class? Not much. It’s like having a steak with no mashed potatoes. Here, we’re actually served up two lovey-dovey subplots, both of which were thankfully not force-fed down our throats like Ron Jeremy on the job. They actually wound up complementing the narrative quite admirably. Point 2 for GOOD SCREENWRITING!

It should be said that throughout my sit-down with this big, bad bat, the words “Apocalypse Now” kept ringing in my head as I followed our two heroes trekking through a war-torn Romania in search of the isolated Count. That in itself is a big compliment. The total change of feel when compared to the 2 previous entries unquestionably made this second sequel feel fresher than a 6:00AM BJ with a side order of pancakes. High five and hookers goes out to director Lussier for delivering tight and snazzy visuals while capitalizing on the mood imbued locations at hand. I was having a blast discovering this seedy world alongside the leads! Add to all that “loving”, a left hook ending that granted, I saw coming (it just made sense) but that still whooped my watermelon into a health-shake and you get a highly competent action/horror hybrid that goes to show that not all straight-to-video offerings are of poor quality. They actually could also OWN!

On the “I gotta bitch about it” side of the coin, call me a greedy “jack-knob”, but even with all the action found here, I still wasn’t fully content. I think variety was the missing spice here. Maybe the addition of martial arts would’ve helped to juice things up. And again (I had the same qualm with Dracula 2) the fights were, at times, just too short for my taste buds! Ahhh...the pitfalls of being a child of the wham-bam “Van Damme” fights for 15 minutes 80’s! Lastly, I found Dracula (this time played by “The Hitcher” himself, Rutger Hauer) to be lacking prominent presence throughout. It’s too bad because when he did finally arise...he came with a unique spin on his persona and a bang-on Hauer interpreting it with gusto. I would’ve loved to have spent more time with The Count and his novel (for the character of Dracula) state of being. Bummer.

But when all was said and bled dry, "Dracula 3: Legacy" was an enthralling watch from start to finish. It just never stopped rocking and rolling the whole time and actually gave me that yummy “Saturday Matinee” like joo-joo as I was watching it. Dare I even say that Ufizzy gave "Blade" a run for his funds? I said it…let's breathe in, breathe out. Talk amongst yourselves. LEGACY CAN’T BE THE END! IT’S A NEW BEGINNING!
GORE
Let the gravy hit the meat! We get severed heads, harpoons in the chest/head/ eye (nice one!), mangled corpses, some impalings, stakings, a melting head, a lopped off arm, a body cut in two, some vamp bites and more!
ACTING
Jason Scott Lee (Ufizzi) has this very likeable quality about him, you just can’t help but dig the guy and his role here was no exception. The man was photogenic as hell, intense in his performance, while at the same time, nailing the many physical demands of the role. AWESOME! I LOVE THIS GUY! Jason London (Luke) was natural and hit all of the emotional notes he had to hit. Good job bro! Diane Neal (Elizabeth) sizzled, charmed me with her accent and played it down. She worked! Alexandra Wescourt (Julia) just looked yummy…like really yummy…so yummy that I didn’t even bother noticing her acting since I was too busy hogging her other talents. I’m just kidding, the gal did fine! Rutger Hauer (Dracula) wasn’t in the film much, but possessed the scenery when he popped up. Nice to see the Hauer man again! Where you been dude...still at the pub? Roy Scheider (Cardinal Siqueros) came in to play blind, say a couple of lines and that was enough for me…GREAT MAN!
T & A
We get one fully naked chick and then we get more naked broads in a scene that I like to call the “Orgy of Blood”. I wouldn’t mind attending one of those, like…SOON! The ladies get Jason Scott Lee shirtless and toned like a mofo on a mofo workout regime!
DIRECTING
Patrick Lussier was at it again giving me more of what I loved about the two previous Dracula films. I’m talking about slow motion up the ying-yang, creative shots, quick cuts and flash with all of it being cut tighter than my bank account after a weekend of debauchery! The man’s editing know-how was quite the asset to this flick’s “click-click-boom” pace. Bang on bud!
SOUNDTRACK
The score by Kevin Kliesch and Ceiri Torjussen was either way badass or echoed the foreign setting to a T. NICE!
BOTTOM LINE
"Dracula 3: Legacy" was a tightly written, ingenious and fast-paced display of fine characterization, gore, female goodies, laughs and unyielding action. If this is the end of the franchise...what a way to check out! Sure, Rutger Hauer wasn’t in the film enough and the fight scenes -- although plenty -- would’ve benefited from more length and spices, but overall I was quite the happy night creature. Now either give Uffizy his own franchise already or move on that new beginning pronto, because I want to see these characters again! I miss them already! Who’s with me on this??? Let's all cheer: Ufizzy! Ufizzy! Ufizzy! All together now! Ufizzy! Ufizzy! Ufizzy! YEAH THAT’S IT! YOU HEAR ME DIMENSION! GIVE US MORE UFIZZY! Court’s adjourned…
BULL'S EYE
This flick was shot back to back with "Dracula 2: Ascension".

The screenplay was written by Joel Soisson and Patrick Lussier.

The flick was shot in Bucharest, Romania.

This flick is not to be confused with the Casper Van Diem/Coolio vampire-in-space flick “Dracula 3000” (wow…now that’s what I call an unsubtle rip on a title…shame on whoever called the film that)
Strikeback
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