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Van Helsing Equals Monkey Vomit

Hey guess what, I got a contributing editor to the site today. Happens to be a guy I work with who gets features on the SciFi web site quite often in the Letters section.

Check it out, this is what he wrote:


Normally, I agree with Michael Basil on a lot of points he brings up (Hugh Jackman Makes Van Wilder). Normally, I admire his well-written letters expressing thought out opinions on the state of the pursuit of SF (be it speculative fiction or science fiction).

But not today.

And I apologize ahead of time if I offend Michael, because I think he's a decent human being with a decent head on his shoulders.

But to say that Van Helsing was anything but a steaming pile of monkey vomit is just not accurate. From the Wolfman crawling on the walls (a motif Sommers seems unable to shed) to undead demon babies to unexplained hordes of knock-off ugnaughts, to the ludicrous plot twist of only a werewolf being capable of killing Dracula, this movie rates down in the basement with the worst Troma produced films. And I like Troma!

So many things were twisted so far beyond recognition, it's like they were just making it up as they went along. Re-imaginings and re-inventions have finally, irrevocably, gone too far. I wanted my Dracula to be a detached, almost-as-emotionless-as-lifeless, regal being of supreme evil. Not Tommy Lee Jones as Two-Face.

I have to admit, the wolfman transformations deserved a second look?but there were plot contrivances that simply made no sense. Horror flicks don't need to make sense, but it helps. Glaringly, the literal litters of "young" the brides had. If vampire young are born dead?and we are specifically told they are?and if they are born hundreds at a time?and we are specifically told they are?they must have been very small, on the order of millimeters. So if they're dead, how did they grow to these huge 2-foot across necrotic amniotic sacs? If we were to invoke fantasy or horror logic, we could say that they grew because they were otherworldly, but if they were otherwordly, why would they need the science of the Monster to bring them to "life?" Wouldn't a few sacrifices or a few gallons of virgin blood do the trick?

The amazing gadgets produced before the turn of the last century?I don't know, I resist period pieces that, except for the backgrounds and costumes, could be today.

This movie is one of the very few I have ever gotten so close to walking out of?and I paid 8 bucks for Starship Troopers.

If this is what keeps Transylvania on the moviemaking map, then throw it out there "where there be dragons!"

Sorry Mike, I just can't back ya up on this one. I'm hoping you were being sarcastic.

Adrian Hunter

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