Dark Angels (2000)
By: Devon B. on September 3, 2007  |  Comments  |  Bookmark and Share
Digital Sin (USA). All Regions, NTSC 1.77:1. (Non-anamorphic). English 2.0. 118 minutes
The Movie
Director: Nic Andrews
Starring: Sydnee Steele, April, Jewel De'Nyle, McKayla, Ginger Paige, April Flowers, George Kaplan
Screenplay: Nic Andrews, George Kaplan
Country: USA
I have a weak spot for 80s horror; I admit it freely. One thing that was always very irksome, though, was the shot on video trend, and even more annoying than that was the trend of shot on video movies to feature scenes of people driving around in cars for no reason. I had hoped that this trend was more dead and buried than a movie by Gary Sherman, but then I watched Dark Angels. Okay, it was bad enough to be stuck watching vehicles go from place to place in a horror movie, but who the fuck is going to have the patience for this in a porno?

Dark Angels opens with a woman who must've really liked Razor Blade Smile going to a club. Turns out she's a vampire, so this beginning also owes a bit to Blade. She picks up some guy that can't dance for shit, and does him before doing him in. I know he died because there was a cheap ass squirt of blood. Anyway, the Queen of the Vampires turns up to angrily confront the club stalker, because the Queen wants to keep the vampires' existence undetected, and sucking then fucking then sucking again in a public toilet isn't how she envisions that working out. The Queen should've heeded her own cautionary words, because it's actually her that gets spotted by a human while doing her thing with a different guy in a parking lot. The human that spots her becomes a target of the vampires, so she runs to the police for protection, but it seems that the police will be able to do sweet f.a. to stop the Queen.

Despite being a porno, the acting is generally okay, and some would even be passable in a non-XXX feature. There are some attempts at style, such as angled shots, sometimes even during sex, but it's not like Dario Argento has given up giallo to make a hardcore sex film. The sex is a bit repetitive, especially the first two scenes set in cramped spaces which are almost identical, but Dark Angels is probably okay for couples. Condoms are used, if that's an issue for you.

The vampires are a bit odd, seemingly afraid of guns, and the vamped out form seems strangely familiar…I think because I saw the exact same thing in From Dusk Till Dawn. Also, these vampires seem content to hang out in areas where lots of wood is laying around (the kind that can be readily used for impaling, not for humping). You'd think they'd be concerned about all that potential staking material being so available, given that they have a tendency to get impaled and then blow up in a cheap CG explosion.

Okay, so I didn't like Dark Angels for the sex, and I generally dislike vampire movies in general, so there's only one thing left that can save it: porno movie ridiculousness. There is some intentional humour, and the film straddles the line of credibility not just as a horror movie, but even as a porno, but it's not really enough to be unintentionally amusing. There are a few moments of hilarity, particularly a woman asking a mortician if he's crazy when he's just fucked her after he found her in a body freezer, but overall, this one's very unessential.
Dark Angels was shot on video, and has some grain. The film is slightly letterboxed, but is presented at 4:3.
The audio is a two channel track. There's mention that the score won an award, but I just found it distracting. It also sometimes makes the dialogue sound disconnected, and can overpower the talking in some places.
Extra Features
This is a two disc edition, with quite a few extras. The first disc has the screenplay with a jump to a scene feature. There're also two commentaries. The first is a cast commentary also featuring the director. It's actually not a bad track, and you can also choose to watch the commentators watching the film if that's your type of thing. The second track is a crew track, and is again okay, but this isn't a movie worthy of two commentaries. You can also watch the movie with an isolated score, in case it wasn't loud and distracting enough in the normal version.

Disc two has some featurettes that generally run about 13 minutes each. The topics covered are a general making of, building the monster, and visual FX. One other shorter featurette is about a guy doing a line loop. This one only runs four minutes, and is kind of amusing. Also included are a photo gallery, outtakes, web info, press info, and some trailers for other titles. The press section includes magazine layouts, reviews, articles, and a list of nominations and awards.
The Verdict
The Dark Angels DVD is too expensive, and I actually preferred the much cheaper, similarly themed From Lust Till Dawn. There's a sequel to Dark Angels, but I'll be giving it a miss.
Movie Score
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