SF, fantasy, horror, mystery website
illustrated SF and general satire
music reviews
action movie heroines
helicopters in movies and TV
VideoVista is published by PIGASUS Press

copyright © 2001 - 2005 VideoVista
December 2005 SITE MAP   SEARCH

Vampires: The Turning

cast: Colin Egglesfield, Stephanie Chao, Meredith Monroe, and Patrick Bauchau

director: Marty Weiss

84 minutes (15) 2004
Sony VHS rental / retail

RATING: 5/10
reviewed by Debbie Moon
American backpackers Connor and Amanda are finding their trip to Thailand only exposes the differences between them. When Amanda walks out of a Thai boxing contest in disgust, she blunders into the path of a predatory vampire, and is infected. Connor finds himself caught between the evil vampires (who've obviously watched The Lost Boys once too often), and an order of benign vampires sworn not to feed on humans. One of the good vamps holds the key to turning all vampires back to mortals, and the day on which this can be accomplished is fast approaching. Connor insists that they turn him, so he'll be strong enough to help them. If they succeed, he and Amanda will both get their lives back; but if not...

This low-budget Thai movie is based on a fairly smart idea - would you gamble not your life, but your mortality, your humanity, for the woman you love? - and makes good use of the disorienting effect of being stuck in a foreign culture. But there are a lot of lazy dramatic choices - a thrash metal soundtrack, leatherjackets and motorbikes, a gang of hired slayers who seem to have been borrowed from Joss Whedon. The early scenes, as Connor tries to get the good vamps to help him find Amanda, are rather repetitive, and even the fight scenes are lacklustre until the end.

Colin Egglesfield, as our hero, certainly kick-boxes up a storm, and bears some faint resemblance to a young Tom Cruise, but comes across as distinctly wooden in the quieter scenes. Meredith Monroe's Amanda fares even worse, spending her scant screen time cowering or fainting. On the plus side, Dom Hetrakul hams it up as leather-clad villain Niran, and Stephanie Chao's ancient but lovely vamp gives the movie some emotional heart.

If you love bloodsuckers, or martial arts movies, this enjoyable but fairly forgettable movie might be the thing for you. If not, this probably isn't the film to convince you otherwise.

Did you find this review helpful? Any comments are always welcome!
Please support VideoVista, buy stuff online using these links - | | Send it | W.H. Smith