If you wish to go to the current Fangoria site, you may click the top logo, "Home" or "News" links. Or click here.
I don’t think I’m alone when I say that I’ve had enough vampires and zombies. For now. It’s just…enough. So when I received word that I’d be checking this one out, I immediately pulled up the trailer, and was surprised to find myself looking forward to SUCK (out on DVD and Blu-ray September 28 from E1 Entertainment). Writer/director/lead actor Rob Stefaniuk has combined sharp cheese with dry wit to bring you…what? A comedy about a vampire rock band, yes. But before you shunt this effort off into I-Hate-Vampires Land, consider this for a moment…
It’s meant to be a hoot. A spry, colorful, zany hoot. A hoot with some brains and heart to mix in with its blood. It has fun with bloodsuckers and rock bands without totally disrespecting either (despite both being easy targets) and doesn’t ram an uppity morality stake in the film’s chest. The flick ain’t perfect—but so what? Absurd and uneven as it may be at times, there’s no time to get bored or frustrated. The characters are too consistently witty and/or numbskulled for one to become overtly passionate or analytical about what the film is trying to “do” to the essence of cinematic vampirism.
The story is sweet ’n’ simple. A struggling rock band called The Winners finds sudden success (suckcess? Sorry…) when their beautiful bassist Jennifer (Jessica Paré) becomes a bloodsucker. Her sexy vampness appeals to the crowds, so when her bandmates subsequently become undead, the crowds go wild and gory monkeyshines ensue. Along the way, we meet Dave Foley as the band’s manager, Henry Rollins as a goofy DJ, Iggy Pop as a worn record producer, Alice Cooper as a wise bartender (and maybe more), Moby as a (hilarious) punk singer and Malcolm McDowell as “legendary vampire hunter Eddie Van Helsig.” There are tons of gags and funky setpieces (including the over-the-top music-video moment where Burning Bridges singer Dimitri Coats seduces Paré into becoming a you-know-what). To jabber about the film’s funniest tricks would be a disservice, however. Check it out and be surprised at the sudden stop-motion animation, snappy dialogue, appearances by a very young McDowell and…well, that’s good for now.
The usual supplemental love has been provided on the discs, including a making-of piece, commentary and Burning Bridges music video. “Down to the Crossroads or: How to Make a Movie SUCK” provides lengthy cast and crew interviews that don’t skimp on the goods. The real rock stars chat about the flick (with Pop sharing that “This is not my first vampire [film] offer, but it’s the first one I took!”), and McDowell pleasantly remarks that he made the call himself to confirm his involvement—no agent needed, as he liked the script that much. And ya gotta love learning that Cooper, McDowell and Rollins are old golf buddies. Lots of behind-the-scenes biz is included as well, from cameras to animation to writing to FX; this is not just another 10-minute bit where everyone sucks each other (sorry again).
The commentary features Stefaniuk and cinematographer Gregor Hagey, and these fellows divulge very well. They often discuss the flick fast enough to make you grateful that it’s just these two—if anyone else had joined them, some of their jokes, trivia and anecdotes might’ve been lost to the expansive Ocean of Unfinished Commentary Track Stories. Damn that ocean… Anyway, the duo happily, humbly and honestly walk us through the movie; this is the kind of fun track where even a tiny chunk of sky in the background of a scene gets a mention of the color-correcting that went into it. When they sense there are slow spots and find themselves watching the movie, they quickly jolt themselves out of it.
Last but not least, the widescreen presentation and 5.1 sound are both A-OK. Frankly, SUCK’s color palette is so nicely neon-injected in the club scenes, so nicely stark in the alley scenes, and the reds pop so perfectly that I just found myself gushing a bit and don’t know what else to say. SUCK it up some night (not sorry…).
DVD/ Blu-ray Reviews
JOIN OUR COMMUNITY AND BE THE FIRST TO KNOW ABOUT NEWS, CONTESTS, EVENTS AND MORE!
All contents © 2011 Fangoria Entertainment