Several years ago, I had the pleasure of finally watching SUBSPECIES, a classic Full Moon vampire flick starring Anders Hove. I was impressed with the film, and I eagerly awaited the opportunity to watch more in the series (there are four films total, as far as I know). Thankfully, Full Moon recently sent me the second film, SUBSPECIES 2: BLOODSTONE. With it came a nice surprise: the limited edition variant DVD cover that is personally signed by the legendary Charles Band and director Ted Nicolaou. As you can see from the image above, this variant contains some excellent artwork, and is a true testament to the legendary Full Moon brand. And as such, it is a fitting cover for this epic follow-up to the first film.
If you are not familiar with SUBSPECIES 2: BLOODSTONE, here is the plot synopsis courtesy of Full Moon:
The centuries-old conflict that has plagued the villages of Transylvania explodes into bloodshed. The mad vampire Radu (ANDERS HOVE) becomes obsessed with Michelle (DENICE DUFF), who loves his half-mortal brother Stefan. In his quest to possess Michelle and the sacred relic, the Bloodstone, Radu destroys Stefan as he sleeps.
Michelle steals the Bloodstone and escapes from Radu’s castle. She finds a lair beneath a theatre in Bucharest and stalks the streets in torment, torn between her fading humanity and her growing thirst for blood. She phones her sister Rebecca (MELANIE SHATNER) and begs her to come to Bucharest to help her. With the aid of Mel Thompson (KEVIN BLAIR) of the US Embassy and Romanian policeman Lt. Marin (ION HAIDUC) she hunts for Michelle in the shadows of the sinister city.
Radu, desperate to regain the Bloodstone, seeks help from his monstrous mother, the ageless sorceress Mummy , who demands the he destroy Michelle before she destroys him. Rebecca becomes Radu’s unwitting pawn in the race to find Michelle and the Bloodstone.
I am impressed with this film for several reasons, but primarily because it literally picks up moments after the end of the first film. Although this film was shot two years after the first was released, the production crew does an amazing job of putting the audience right back into the scene, as if no time had elapsed.
SUBSPECIES 2: BLOODSTONE is shot well and looks good onscreen, however I am looking forward to the Blu-ray of this one as well. My Blu-ray player upconverts the DVD a bit, but I would like an even clearer picture. This is really only an issue when the scenes are dark; when they come about, things get kinda grainy. Otherwise, everything looks good.
The acting is once again great, with Anders Hove reprising the role of Radu. Hove is amazing as a vampire, and I have no problem believing he is a centuries old fiend. The role of Michelle, on the other hand, is taken over by Denice Duff, who gives a great performance. She appears to exhibit a nice dramatic range, therefore she’s a nice addition to the cast.
The special effects in SUBSPECIES 2: BLOODSTONE look better than those in its predecessor, and there’s even a nice, gory bit at the beginning where the demon-imps reattach Radu’s head to his body. These effects look great and are reminiscent of something John Carpenter wrote up for THE THING. I also like the look of Radu’s mother; she is a grotesque ‘thing’ that will likely pop up in my nightmares sooner or later.
SUBSPECIES 2: BLOODSTONE is a big win for me, and I particularly love the variant cover art. I highly recommend this one, and I suggest you snag one of these limited editions while quantities last. They only made 250 signed copies, and I have #4…thus, you’d better get on the ball quickly if you want to have one of these amazing collector’s items for your library. Head over to Full Moon Direct now to order your copy.