Blood Feast II: All U Can Eat

on December 31, 2002 by Charles Martin
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There is something to be said for a director who does not need squads of digital compositing artists in order to tell a special-effects laden tale. The secret of both the original "Blood Feast" and its sequel (made over 35 years later) is the formula: cheesy comedy with incredibly dark undertones. Herschell Gordon Lewis returns from retirement to prove that he can still make classics that stand the test of time like his original set of "gore" movies, and that the best humor isn't black--it's blood red.

Lewis takes the unusual but wise step of basically remaking the first film over again, but with updated characters and production values. Fuad Ramses, grandson of the original star, takes up exactly where his ancestor left off, falling almost instantly under the spell of a low-tech paper-maché statue named Ishtar who commands him to kill and prepare a ritual feast of blood. Luckily, he is living in a town with incredibly stupid cops, incredibly naïve townsfolk, and incredibly buxom young women who are completely free of common sense (and, often, their clothes). The gore effects that were so shocking in 1963 now seem quaintly hilarious, but Lewis no longer needs to shock to get attention. His characters do the entertaining, and the complete lack of a sensible story or little details like continuity actually add to the fun. His style has grown perfectly in sync with the increasing sophistication of cult moviegoers.

There are filmmakers--too many--who deliberately set out to make a "bad" movie and fail. Lewis pursues a great vision on a Z-budget, and thus succeeds in being this generation's Ed Wood. His style is certainly not for everyone (particularly Baptists, prudes and the faint of heart), but he'll never bore you--and that's more than we get from most mainstream filmmakers. Starring J. P. Delahoussaye, Melissa Morgan, Mark McLachlan and John John McConnell. Directed by Herschell Gordon Lewis. Written by W. Boyd Ford. Produced by David F. Friedman. No distributor set. Comedy. Not yet rated. Running time: 96 min.

Tags: Starring J. P. Delahoussaye, Melissa Morgan, Mark McLachlan and John John McConnell. Directed by Herschell Gordon Lewis, Written by W. Boyd Ford, Produced by David F. Friedman, Comedy
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