This low-budget vampire movie feels like a pilot … it takes care to differentiate its eponymous hero (Dean Jagger) from Blade and Buffy, but the upshot is a character who combines elements of both while somehow feeling more generic. The frame story is that Nash, a New York cop relocated to Los Angeles, is being nursed by Macy (Fernanda Romero) as he recovers from horrific neck injuries – plainly in the throes of turning into a vampire, though the film’s a bit prissy about saying so. In flashbacks, we get a lot of cameos from mysterious wise elders (Malcolm McDowell, Bruce Davison, Rutger Hauer – all of whom have played Dracula) and stuff about the deaths of Corbin’s parents, who were in a long line of vampire hunters. Star Jagger and his director brother Ben co-wrote the script with Christopher P. Taylor, and keep loading up the title character with cool traits from the direct-to-VHS era but Corbin Nash can barely hold a candle to Jake Speed let alone seem like an above-the-title break-out franchise star. Because of that, attention keeps shifting to Queeny (Corey Feldman) and Vince (producer Richard Wagner), a pair of vampires who are estranged (‘fuck the monarchy!’) from a shadowy council of red-eyed elders and cruise around performing random atrocities. Feldman does his best to impersonate a Warhol superstar – a transvestite with Baby Jane make-up, a camp shrill and pretty standard evil vampire bastard manners. Wagner’s Vince, a serial killer smitten with his screeching partner, is overshadowed at every turn and mostly keeps his head down. It’s mostly lit by neon and murk, taking place in the usual bars, alleys, clubs and warehouses with victims littered all over the place and earnestly hardboiled thug dialogue. Feldman isn’t exactly good, but does go all out in the role. By the last act, the obvious thing has happened and Corbin resurrects as a vampire-hunting vampire – skewering the current Middle-Level Bads, but with a ton of other monsters out there in case this ekes enough streaming fees to merit sequels. It’s a cut or two above the handmade likes of Fist of the Vampire or Way of the Vampire, but doesn’t draw level with even average vampire-slayer quickies like Night Hunter or Out for Blood. Captain Kronos needn’t feel threatened.
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