Vampire Bats (2005)

Vampire Bats (2005)

It’s feeding time

After her run-in with deadly locusts, former government scientist Maddy Rierdon is now a professor at a small Louisiana college. When a student is found dead with all of the blood drained from him, the authorities are puzzled as to what could have happened. Maddy takes an interest in the case when two of her students are pulled out of her class by the police and accused of knowing something about it. More bodies begin to turn up over the next few days and Maddy finds out that is in fact a form of mutant bat that has been killing people and animals. But there’s not just one of them, there’s hundreds of them and they’re hungry.

 

Apparently this is a sequel of sorts to a film called Locusts which, after suffering through this, I clearly have no desire to watch. It featured the same main characters, just different ‘problems’ for them to combat. I don’t really like the idea of bringing in these characters just to create some sort of series for fans of the original to follow. It’s a cheap ploy to attract viewers of Locusts – the sort of viewers aged 15-21 who have probably never seen a decent horror flick before and will think any old movie with a bit of blood and some killer critters is going to be the scariest thing ever. Anyway enough of the evils for the time being, I didn’t actually know it was a follow-up when I sat down to watch it so let’s forget about that link and focus on this film.

Bats have never really given me the creeps. I think they’re actually kind of cute (although I wouldn’t really want to hug one or let one near me). I guess there’s a lot of people out there who don’t like that whole association with the night and fear of the dark and what lurks in it thing. Added to that the fact that they’ve always been labelled as blood suckers (only three types of bat are and I’m sure they don’t try and attack 6′ 5″ guys) and you certainly have the potential for something to scare the pants off someone. But when the bats in this film look as cuddly as they do, you’d think that there was a plush toy promo going on. CGI bats fly in the moonlight and then the actors grab really bad puppets and hold them to their bodies to simulate attacks. They’re very small so quite how one or two them could overpower a big guy is beyond me. That’s pretty much the entire gist of it.

As for the story itself, well it’s the cookie-cutter ‘monster on the loose’ formula. A few random deaths, usually of drunks/bums/fisherman/hunters. A few pieces to the puzzle are found near the bodies. False accusations fly. Someone in a position of authority doesn’t want to acknowledge that there’s a monster problem because it will harm the town’s festival/property development/glamorous event. Said monster problem them comes and causes problems at said event. Then the scientists/experts are called in to deal with the monster… Yadda yadda ya. It’s the same film that’s been revamped countless times since Jaws and will no doubt be done to death countless times in the future too.

It’s a good formula and, like the slasher film, one that doesn’t leave a lot of scope for innovation. I do like to see films try and break the mould but Vampire Bats isn’t one of them. Its sooooo predictable, it’s not funny. Lucy Lawless is a decent enough actress, unfortunately forever shackled by the Xena tag. So why is she stooping so low to star in this? She can’t be that desperate for cash nowadays, can she?

 

Vampire Bats feels like a cheap watered-down horror flick that you’d put on TV during the day, such is the weakness of the entire film to scare, shock or even bombard with blood. In the feeble ‘killer bat’ genre, Vampire Bats comes up reeking of guano – a hard feat to accomplish given the equally sub-standard quality of other genre offerings such as Bats and Fangs.

 

 ★★☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆ 

 

 

Related Movies

Post a comment