Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Sundown:The Vampire in Retreat Movie Review

Sundown:The Vampire in Retreat is a 1989 horror/western comedy directed by Anthony Hickox and starring David Carradine, Bruce Campbell, Deborah Foreman and Maxwell Caulfield.

We are told at the start of the movie that there is some vampires who have decided that they do not want to kill humans. They start using a synthetic blood substitute and they can survive on this. They are led by the mysterious Count Mardulak(Carradine).David Harrison(Jim Metzler) and his wife Sarah(Morgan Brittany) and their two daughters go to the little town of Purgatory where David is needed to help the vampires at the blood making plant. The family decide to make it a vacation.
Meanwhile, in the town,a vampire called Mort(M. Emmet Walsh) meets an obnoxious guy at his gas station and he kills him which is forbidden by Mardulak. The guys pals are watching and they see what Mort has done. They are Jack(Dana Ashbrook) and Alice(Elizabeth Gracen). They go into the town to find a sheriff. When they meet him, he doesn't seem to care what has happened.

Mort hides the body. In the town, the residents are all vampires. They make the town look as if it is normal for the humans. David and his family drive into town and they are greeted by the locals.
The place seems a bit odd to them. Their daughter is obsessed with vampires and she has been dreaming about them. They settle in to the house where they are staying and David goes to the plant. He meet a former friend of his called Shane(Caulfield). He has been turned into a vampire and he works at the plant. David notices that there are some discrepancies in the plant and he wonders what has been going on. He is going to straighten it out. There is a big problem in town. An old guy called Jefferson(John Ireland) has been talking to the locals about the artificial blood. He tells them that they should be hunting and eating humans and not relying on the plant anymore. Shane agrees with him and they gather an army to fight the others who don't want to kill humans. Shane has been messing around at the plant on purpose so that David would come and bring his wife with him.Shane wants Sarah as he had an affair with her before she married David and he has never gotten over her.
He tries to seduce her but it doesn't work.

The vampires survive by wearing sunscreen and hats and dark glasses during the day. David meets Mardulak and he is interested in the dreams that their daughter has been having. She tells him that she has a dream about a war coming. Mardulak realises that someone is against him. Mort turns Jack and Alice into vampires as otherwise, he would have to kill them. He tells them that they are vampires now and that they have to to help Mardulak fight against the bad vampires who are gathering together. Jefferson and Shane have made special wooden bullets to kill the vampires. 

Another person is in Purgatory. His name is Robert Van Helsing(Campbell) and he wants to kill Mardulak and all the vampires. He runs into Sandy(Foreman) who is the local beauty and he takes her captive and wants her to lead him to Mardulak. He gets caught up in the strife as Shane and Jefferson take their posse and go looking for trouble. They shoot and kill a lot of the local vampires and they head to Mardulak's house to kill him. Sandy turns Van Helsing into a vampire and he helps the good vampires fight.There is a huge battle and loads of vampires die. David and his family are there too and Shane tries to get Sarah. He has her in the bedroom but David arrives and sprays him with holy water and kills him. David and Sarah erect a giant cross on the roof of Mardulak's house and the bad vampires go on fire and die. Mardulak realises that God has forgiven him and his pals and that is why they were saved. Everything ends well. David leaves with his family. Mardulak tells him that the plant will be fine now and they will try and recruit more vampires into the town...

This was great fun. I wasn't too sure about the mixture of horror and western but it works here. The comedy was good too. Campbell was entertaining,as usual. Carradine was good as the mysterious Count Mardulak. The whole cast were great in this. The movie was fun from start to finish. I really enjoyed this one. It is just a silly, hilarious, unusual ride and I highly recommend it. This is one to watch. I will give it a 7/10.


Susan Leighton said...

Of course, you probably already know I have watched this one. David Carradine looked highly amused throughout the entire flick. I really wished Bruce would've had more to do but I know he did this shortly after finishing Hickox's Waxwork II. It is entertaining and who can beat M. Emmett Walsh as an ornery vamp? Excellent review, Jigs!

Amanda said...

Thanks, Susan. This was one that was on TV the other night and I had never heard of it to be honest. I liked the cast and I was really surprised with it. These horror/comedy movies don't work sometimes but this did. I thought that it was funny and the story was actually pretty good. It shouldn't have worked but it did. Campbell was underused but I still liked his part in this. Foreman looked a little like Laura Palmer here too!

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