Bordello of Blood (1996)

“I feel like I’m in a bad episode of Tales From The Crypt!”

Justin’s Rating: Ha Ha! I got to a vampire movie before Rich or Alex!

Justin’s Review: Other than vaguely being aware of the show to the point where I could catch any pop culture Crypt Keeper references, Tales From The Crypt just never held interest for me. It’s on that same Elvira plane where bad horror and leftover comedy are swirled together in a hokum’s swill… but pal, if you’re gonna serve me that then I want a classy cherry on top, and you’re all fresh out of those.

But since I see myself sometimes as a bloodhound, vigilantly sniffing out potential cult classics from piles of unsold Powder videos, I gave Bordello of Blood a whiff to see what was cooking. Yes, sometimes as a smellhound I feel like I’m the not-so-bright-type, with a great big nose but horrible eyesight, stupidly running into walls over and over again looking for the doggy door leading to the big yard of movie biscuits.

Does that metaphor even make sense? Does it matter?

I only need two words to convey the plot of this film to you: vampires and bordello. Even the least imaginative of you must be able to throw those two elements together to correctly ascertain the entire “story” here. There’s a brothel — some sort of posh country club for women of loose ethics — and it’s full of scantily clad vampires. Really, Shakespeare couldn’t do more with this material. Before you (and by “you”, I mean “Kyle” and “Rich”) get all voo-voo-voo-voom over the thought of hundreds of high-spirited bosoms free of the Braocracy, it’s just nothing to get worked up about. Nudity en masse gets old, quick, and except for some curious and ignorant eight-year-old boys who filch this out of their parents’ collections, nobody’s going to be going “Ooh! Vampire breasts in hokey outfits! I am sensually charged!” any time soon.

As inspirational and full of literary value as a vamp bordello may be, it still received the royal treatment as the king of quips himself, Dennis Miller, came to alight upon this movie. Miller nails a different type of anti-hero, and he’s actually pretty fun to watch. His dry barrages of intense vocabulary are a welcome oasis in this B-movie wasteland. It’s strange to see Dennis Miller and say, “Hey, he’s my hero!” but I can say that Bordello of Blood would be much less with the traditional stock horror movie protagonist.

Miller investigates the bordello on the behest of Erika Eleniak — better known as “That naked girl who jumped out of a cake for Steven Segal in Under Siege” (yes, that’s a long title, but since she’s already printed up business cards we sort of have to keep it). Poor Corey Feldman is Erika’s brother, becomes a vampire, and wears a skull nose stud. We’d feel sorrier for him, but this was probably the highlight of his year. Oh, how the Goonie has fallen.

Like one of those basement museums runs by a guy named Phil, Bordello of Blood has a handful of oddities to make the rest of this gory sludge worth the pickings. For instance, they have a scene that’s there for nothing more than to show a creepy coroner playing “choo choo train” on a dead girl’s stomach. Plus, Dennis Miller probably worked out any childhood issues by using a holy water-filled supersoaker to burn hundreds of vampire hookers. And where else are you going to get that? Huh? Your local junior high talent show? Well, not unless they’re very creative.

So, perfect for that post-Thanksgiving dinner with the whole family, Bordello of Blood is that film we’ve been waiting for to draw us closer together.

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