Two faculty college students, AJ and Keith, (Robert Rusler and Chris Makepeace), partake in a late-night mission in “Vamp” — discover a stripper to be able to be indoctrinated right into a weird fraternity.
The duo convinces Duncan, a rich however friendless nerd (Gedde Watanabe) to mortgage them his wheels (and his unwelcome firm) to drive into Los Angeles and seek for unique dancers late into the night time. The three uncover The After Darkish Membership, the place the MC (Sandy Baron) is a creepy Vaudeville-like hack, the meals (specifically a bowl stuffed with cockroaches) is disgusting and the ladies are attractive.
Specifically, the hypnotically seductive Katrina (Grace Jones, naturally), who the membership understandably treats like royalty. In fact, there’s one thing off concerning the membership and Katrina herself…
Richard Wenk’s 1986 movie shouldn’t be nearly as good as it’s however manages to beat the subdued expectations style followers generally deliver to the films they love. Sure, it is a horror/comedy about stripper vampires, and it’s from New World Photos, which Roger Corman himself based.
But, the movie has a snarky humorousness, is superbly shot, and stylishly lit, has some jolting make-up results, and injects the template of Martin Scorsese’s “After Hours” (1985) with a juvenile supernatural angle that really works.
Not every little thing right here connects, like a subplot involving Billy Drago as a vampire gang chief, which looks as if a forgotten plot line from an earlier draft that ought to have been tossed.
The one-liners and sitcom-y supply present their age, although Makepeace and Rusler handle to stay likable for the complete movie, which is more durable than it sounds (in spite of everything, they’re enjoying spoiled, good-looking and insufferably naïve frat boy brats).
Watanabe no less than isn’t enjoying the sort of grotesque Asian stereotype that sadly outlined his profession (“Sixteen Candles,” “Gung Ho,” “Gremlins 2,” and so forth.) but it surely’s a significant downside that his character, ostensibly the “comedian aid,” is rarely humorous.
Watanabe was far much less irritating in “Sixteen Candles,” which isn’t a praise.
However, veteran character actress DeDee Pfeiffer, enjoying an After Darkish hostess with a crush on Makepeace’s shy faculty boy, is great. She brings a stunning sweetness and quirky humor to her function.
Then there’s Jones, who enters the movie giving what was doubtless written to be a strip tease on stage however seems just like the wild efficiency artwork that it’s. Dancing to certainly one of her personal tunes, in a crimson wig and a costume simply as scarlet, her physique and chair prop coated in Keith Haring artwork, Jones grabs this film by the throat and by no means lets go.
Maybe it could have been good if her character had extra scenes and any dialog (we hear her trademark snicker however Jones has no traces).
Nonetheless, Jones is spectacular on this, a uncommon movie function that faucets into her unclassifiable picture as a pop icon, singer, actress and dwelling murals. Katrina is each bit as knowingly sensational and empowered as Jones, which is why the function is such an excellent match.
Almost each scene from the second half onward is illuminated with inexperienced and pink lighting, a dreamlike contact that oddly makes the abandoned cityscapes look much less like units and extra just like the sleazier part of the world inhabited by Warren Beatty’s “Dick Tracy” (1990).
Relying in your tolerance for this kind of slick nonsense, this can both be a deluxe responsible pleasure or actually play just like the sort of B-movie that may ultimately encourage “From Nightfall Until Daybreak” (1996) some twenty years later.
Nevertheless you have a look at it, “Vamp” has an edge to it – whereas missing the old fashioned magnificence of “Fright Evening” (1985) and the total throttle MTV kick of “The Misplaced Boys” (1987), it’s disreputable sufficient to be undermined as trashy however polished sufficient in its depiction of privileged boys trying to find the forbidden fruit in “unique” areas which can be like vacationer locations for them.
I want the ultimate scenes have been stronger and that this have been wittier total. Nonetheless, not solely is “Vamp” a worthy ’80s style title worthy of rediscovery, it was clearly a possibility for Jones to showcase her avant garde abilities and sense of favor in a very unlikely car.
The film is pleasing on quite a few ranges but it surely’s Grace Jones who provides “Vamp” its unruly chew.