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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Once Bitten (1985)

Jim Carrey [The Truman Show, Ace Ventura] as a teenage virgin who becomes the obsession of sexy vampire Lauren Hutton [American Gigolo].  Ah, the 80’s.  Director Howard Storm [Mork & Mindy, Valerie] tries to maintain that difficult balance between horror and comedy and succeeds more times than he misses.  Jim Carry gives a more subtle performance than his usual over-the top-lunacy.  It serves him well here.  Hutton is fantastic as the vamp Countess with a great mix of sultry and playfulness. 

The two other stand-outs are Cleavon Little as the Countess’ fey manservant and Karen Hopkins who is Carrey’s girlfriend.  Little steals every scene he’s in and delivers all his lines to perfection.  Hopkins is strongest when she’s going toe-to-toe with the Countess.  Their dance-off to prove who deserves Carrey’s love is priceless.

The negatives include a less than spectacular 80’s soundtrack and some terrible homophobic material that might have worked in the 80’s but falls flat on its face in 2014.  Overall, it’s not a bad movie.  I think it needs a little more comedy and a little more horror.  It never reaches the greatness of such 80’s horror comedies such as Teen Wolf (1985) and Gremlins (1984).

RATING: Good.

For more info check out the film's entry in IMDB.


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