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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

CAPTAIN KRONOS: VAMPIRE HUNTER

                                               
STATS:
CAPTAIN KRONOS: VAMPIRE HUNTER
1974
Written and Directed by Brian Clemens
Starring Horst Janson (seriously)
                   
WHA’ HAPPENED?
A rich family goes around sucking the life out of pretty, young girls in order to stay youthful forever. Our titular captain (What is he the captain of? No idea.) comes to the rescue, defeating these age-sucking jerkwads with his fencing skills, luck with the ladies, and obscure vampire knowledge. (Fun fact: vampires can bring dead toads back to life just by walking by.)
                 
                       
ISN’T THAT SPECIAL?
I’ve always been a Hammer fan, and I knew this entry in their mid-70s output is particularly strange. Not oppressively strange in a kung-fu-vampires kind of way, but strange enough to catch my interest on a lazy Saturday morning.

SHIRTS AND SKINS:
Kronos is shirtless a good 40% of the movie. He has one dimly lit sex scene, and a bunch of innocent bromantic scenes with another male character that turn slightly more homoerotic because hes shirtless. (In one memorable exchange, his buddy touches the captain's torso scar and says that he knows he has guts, because he’s already seen his insides.) The actor playing Kronos isn’t exactly someone to write home about, but hey.
                 
                           
BLOOD AND GUTS:
Mostly slight trickles of mouth blood and glumpy old-age make-up. Hammer has done a lot better in the past.

RANDOM THOUGHTS:
I enjoyed the wonky mythos that this film built around its vampire characters. Specifically, each vampire can only be killed in specific ways. Some have to be staked, some have to be burnt, and some have to get a crucifix to sink into their embarrassingly vulnerable chest. It must suck to be the vampire that dies via garlic pizza.
                    
                           
OK. IS IT GAY?
Yeah. The film builds a strange rhythm where it has a bromance scene with Kronos and the doctor who summoned him (the scar-caressing one), followed very quickly by Kronos making sexy-time with his female companion. Either hes bi, or he needs to sort through some issues fast. That, coupled with a particularly androgynous son-of-a-vampire, makes for some pleasant 70s escapism with a slight queer bent. Fun times all around.
                          

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