Tuesday, March 1, 2016

It’s American Shaun of the Dead But With Vampires, or Thoughts on Bloodsucking Bastards

There have been a lot of office-based comedies, so many that it has become its own genre, so I suppose it was inevitable that someone made a horror comedy set around the water cooler and photocopiers.  The scenario seems like a perfect fit at first glance, the office is always described as a soul-less workplace where dreams go to die, so why not add vampires to the mix?  What could possibly go wrong?
Bloodsucking Bastards (2015) stars Joss Whedon alumnus Fran Kranz from Dollhouse (2009) and The Cabin in the Woods (2011) as Evan, the hapless assistant manager of a downtown call center which like most office comedies, is more like a day care center for adults.  The movie focuses on the comedy rather than the horror, with a slow burn building up the romantic tension between Evan and Amanda the HR manager, played by Emma Fitzpatrick, which might have been a mistake in a film with an 84-minute screen time.
One benefit of an indie low budget movie is the production will never be able to afford CGI and any special effects will be nostalgically analog.  Bloodsucking Bastards lives up to its name and the third act makes liberal use of buckets of stage blood and fake fangs, played more for shock value and laughs than horror.

The movie is a showcase for Fran Kranz and no Cabin in The Woods but it does its best with snappy one-liners and a first rate cast.  As it stands, Bloodsucking Bastards is 80% comedy and 20% horror as the company is slowly taken over by vampires.  It plays with the old horror tropes plays with horror tropes like moving the body and nobody believing the witness and the killer-cam; or shooting the scene from vampire’s POV to show the victim reaction and screams.  There are quick-cut horror montages interlaced with humor that are reminiscent of Shaun of the Dead (2004), but the movie is more like Tucker and Dave vs Evil (2010) which starred another Joss Whedon alumnus, Alan Tudyk from Firefly (2002).

my first novel? thanks for asking:) I wrote a 4 book supernatural martial arts series concerning the ongoing feud between a group of kung-fu killer witches in san francsico’s chinatown.