Thursday, 10 December 2015

Haunting Desires (4 Stars)

This is the third film in the Medina Collection, made in 2003. Until recently I thought it was a later film, because IMDB lists the release date as November 2006. The film's copyright year is 2003, and the DVD files were created in August 2004.

It's a typical vampire tale. A Los Angeles strip club called "Underworld" is the home of a vampire coven. The strippers are all vampires, and the club's owner, Evan Stone, is the lord of the vampires. Be honest, doesn't he look like the coolest vampire ever?

After several of the club's visitors are found dead with their blood drained the police get involved. The detective on the case is the chain smoking Detective Trout, played by Jay Richardson. American homicide detectives are all chain smokers, aren't they? Or is it just in the movies?

After putting the films in the right order -- not an easy job! -- I realised that Jay Richardson has appeared in the first nine films of the Medina Collection, after which he graciously retired. I've watched eight of them so far. I believe this is the only film in which he plays a serious character. In all the other films he's a natural comedian.

The press is also on the case. Investigative reporter Beverly Lynne is following up leads, much more efficiently than the police. Detective Trout only arrives on the scene when Beverly gives him a tip off. As I always say: women can do it better.

Unfortunately, the official release of this DVD is censored. Fred Olen Ray entered into a contract with Blockbuster, which stipulated that the sex scenes had to be shortened and made less explicit. That's unfortunate. There's an uncensored UK release of the film called "Tales from the Erotic Side". It looks like an official release, and it even has a copyright warning, but closer examination reveals that it's a copy from television. The evidence of NTSC to PAL conversion gives it away. I asked Fred Olen Ray about it on Facebook, and he confirmed that he didn't authorise the release.

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