The evil vampire villain Radu (Anders Hove) returns to his hometown Prejnar, after spending years in exile. He steals the precious blood stone which is said to be bleeding from all saints, from his father and kills him.
Meanwhile two American schoolgirls team up with a local girl for work on Romanian culture. Radu becomes attracted to them but runs into trouble when his brother Stefan (Michael Watson) helps the girls.
Although I had a hard time understanding the beginning of the story which is of course a prologue between King Vladislav and his son Radu whom is a vampire in his castle it still looked entertaining while watching the outcome of it having a powerful and dark feel to it all as well as seeing Radu creating little demon trolls from his fingers as well as killing his father and licking the blood from the knife as it almst gave a gothic feel to it all.
Then after the opening credits we have the three women scholars getting together which looked mildly exciting when they meet and travel to the castle taking place present day as well as spotting some sort of a ceremony of people walking by as the moments here looked a bit strange to watch and it caught my attention.
Things start to look very fun when the three girls explore the area and being full of life while doing this as this was nicely put into the story as well as Lillian trying to open some sort of the door where Radu resides in and he is behind the door with a good shot on him trying to get a hold of her hand and then she notices a scratch when she pulls out her arm which looked effective as well as later on him coming out of the door when the girls leave and watching them which is a terrific touch while watching this and leaving an impression that he will start terror on present day.
Terrific scenery in a wooded area at night when the three women are walking back to their cottage and it's misty having a Hallows Eve type of edge to it as well as them spotting Radu spying on them and they get spooked rushing to get back to their destination which is a nice horror touch indeed.
While I was watching the film I spotted a well remembered struggling situation with Radu clutching onto his brother Stefan's head and speaking wickedly and threateningly towards him as this looked good and powerful to watch this.
Of course there's the traditional vampire moment when Radu goes into the cottage and sneakily enters and pays a visit to Lillian sleeping with him getting aroused while about to bite her neck and drink some blood which was done in terrific style to anyone who enjoys low budget vampire flicks.
The next day Lillian isn't well and a doctor comes to her aid which is another nice style to a vampire story in which I had a feeling that she will become one of the creatures of the night fairly soon after Radu's encounter.
Things are drawn in greatly when an older fellow Karl gets together with Stefan and planning weapons as to how to kill a vampire and showing him the objects as there's good camera shots on this as well to what he is discussing. Seemed to fit into the story with fair taste.
While the story rolls along Stefan gets into a romantic discussion with the intelligent one Michele as well as a shot on him kissing her neck which drew me in wondering if he is about to bite her or not. I was certainly thinking is he possibly a vampire like his brother? Certainly leaves off a mysterious clue here.
Then things become strange in which a ceremony happens with people dressed up and carrying torches near a graveyard which has an odd feel to what is going on here.
Well focused moment on Karl and Michele digging a grave for Lillian in which this drew me in feeling sad since that was exactly was what is was supposed to come out as while we watch this scene happen. Yet a bit later things look cool when Radu goes to the graveyard looking vicious and then Lillian rising out of the ground and exposing her fans as I was like YESSSSS!!!
Other parts of the story looked fun to watch with Mara chained up and the troll type of demons are surrounding her as well as Radu being wicked about stuff adding more mild goth to this flick as I was digging all of this.
The action packs a punch quarter way through when both Lillian and Mara are now the creatures of the night capturing Michele as Radu has deadly plans for her with a nice camera shot looking up on him rady to bite into her which looked intense to watch all of this.
Exciting conclusions with Karl coming in to blow away some vampiress' as well as sword fighting sequences between Stefan against his brother Radu as alot of these moments were at high paced energy and exciting to watch.
Bottom line is that I thought that I'd never like anything better than Full Moon Pictures of the Puppet Master legacy but when I came across this this changed my mind. A very well done horror flick in which Charles Band put a bunch of effort and not making it look cheesy or too low budget either. A nice flick to watch close to Halloween with tons of fun touches while watching the story unravel. Check it out you won't be disappointed.
The acting is
in good shape in which Michael Watson (Stefan) drew attention onto the camera pretty well with his seriousness as well as his mysterious behavior. Comes across as someone likeable along with doing well with his speaking when he explains a situation as this was well concentrated. Had the right looks and appeal for the character that he portrayed and showed some nice energy when he springs into action here and there.
Laura Mae Tate (Michele) was one of the best out of the cast as she knew on how to act sharp and intelligent about stuff and it shows here greatly. Has the right nice girl looks as well as doing a nice job reacting to stuff such as a grieving moment and other situations too. She was a passable character actress. Definetely deserves good credit for what she did here.
Anders Hove (Radu) is probably the best out of the cast as a vicious bloodthirsty vampire in which he was marvellous with his scratchy and cold speaking along with really getting into things like drinking someone's blood for example or behaving violent and cruel with his icy words. He brought alot out and had a real gothic attitude too and coming across as perfectly creepy.
Michelle McBride (Lillian) showed off a great bubbly and spunky type of personality in which she was believeable by having a happy go lucky type of attitude in which she made her part quite likeable within all that she did here. Showed off some nice charisma.
Irina Movila (Mara) does well when she speaks her accent coming across perfectly as a tourist type along with being cautious on stuff. Also does a nice job by acting fearful or upset when she is tied up as well as getting into her part later on as a vampiress.
Ivan J. Rado (Karl) had the most effective supporting role in which he drew across nicely by having an older and eccentric type of attitude along with really getting into what he is talking about which comes across well in onto the camera and in his performance. Also does a nice job with his gruff speaking as well as being aggressive whenever he needed to behave this way.
A nice cameo appearance by Angus Scrimm (King Vladislav) as he was perfectly serious and stern when he was talking to someone and came across as perfectly dark just like on how he portrayed the Tall Man. I remembered his part the most in the film as it was hard to forget on what he did here.
Irina Movila is chained up with her shirt torn and breasts exposed.
Bloody neck bites.
Sharp objects of a roof lamp is stabbed into a vampiress.
Decapitation is revealed.
The music was composed by various artists in which there's a variety of it which explains as to why things were versatile. Some of it worked in well and certain others had that waltzy synthesizer type like in other of Full Moon Pictures as it didn't fit into the plots on this one since this seemed different alltogether in which these certain situations seemed a bit cheesy sounding. However, the effective one's worked in greatly especially some of the chanting and harmonising which was great for a vampire flick like this one. Odd low sounds as well as some spooky haunting like music too. Most of it was good regardless.