"THEY NEVER HAD A PRAYER"
The Sins of Dracula is a new film directed by Richard Griffin. Griffin has spent over a decade making his mark on the horror scene. His efforts have shown strong promise since the very beginning. Feeding the Masses and Raving Maniacs certainly show signs of a director getting his start, but these flicks also display a distinct style he has been sharpening throughout his career. Griffin already proved that he can do vampires well with his 2006 film Pretty Dead Things, so I was excited to see him back to deliver another flick with some bloodsucking villains.
Billy is a young man who's entire life revolves around his relationship with God. His sheltered lifestyle starts to collapse around him when his girlfriend convinces him to join the local theater for their next play. Billy has a very hard time adjusting to the diverse group working on the play. When he left his secluded bubble of Christianity, he wasn't anticipating encountering drug addicts and homosexuals among other things. Being around all of these sinners gets him thinking about committing a sin of his own. This temptation comes to a head when Billy has a very intimate conversation with God about his urges to beat his meat into amputee status. Meanwhile, there's a much larger problem occurring back at the theater. The head honcho of the theater department has plans to raise Dracula. Billy's concern about what to do with his junk will soon become the least of his problems.
The Sins of Dracula is essentially a cross between a Hammer horror film and a satire of Christian scare films. The movie is pretty heavy handed with the comedic elements but never really goes into full on parody mode. Many of Griffin's films walk this line. Over the years he's really managed to master the craft of finding the perfect balance between the two. The effects throughout are solid. The flick goes from great, to fucking awesome when the finale comes around. Billy ventures back into the theater to kick some vampire ass, and it is by far the highlight. That being said the first third of Sins is a truly excellent satirical setup. The movie also sports an awesome theme, although I must admit it sounds extremely similar to the training cut scenes from the NES classic Punch-Out.
Overall, The Sins of Dracula is a stellar low budget horror flick. All the jokes in the movie hit their mark perfectly and during the finale it packed some genuine surprises. I've come to the point where I expect quite a bit going into a new Griffin film and he's yet to deliver a disappointment in my book. When I've had a bad streak of indie horror flicks, I can always dig back into his filmography and find a reminder of why I fell in love with movies like these in the first place. If you're looking for a fun vampire flick this is it. GET IT!