Bloodsucking Cinema 

2008

I eat documentaries on genre films like I would breakfast: with gusto. "Bloodsucking Cinema" is an hour-long look at vampire movies, with a heavy leaning toward the modern. It premiered on the Starz cable channel, but thankfully has made its way to DVD for the pay-TV-starved.

Its mix of titles profiled is suspect, but always fun. After all, if one could highlight 10 or so titles, a Uwe Boll flick like "BloodRayne" (or any Boll flick, for that matter) wouldn't be on my list. Nor would "The Lost Boys." But "Bloodsucking" makes a case for the John Landis' underappreciated "Innocent Blood," the big-budget fun of "Van Helsing" and the sleeper hit "Blade." Among the others discussed in any depth include "Underworld," "Interview with the Vampire," "From Dusk Till Dawn" and  "John Carpenter's Vampires," with its director once more talking to the camera with ever-present cigarette in hand.

The evolution from Tod Browning and F.W. Murnau to Universal and Hammer to today is touched upon, supplemented with film clips and interviews with the likes of the late, great effects artist Stan Winston and the annoying Internet film geek Harry Knowles.

Don't expect deep critical commentary, but do expect to develop a checklist of rental to-dos.

"?Rod Lott

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