Saturday, September 26, 2015

Bite School

Director - James Balsamo (Catch of the Day, Cool as Hell)
Starring - James Balsamo, Paul Fears (Celebrity Ghost Stories, Socks), and Mandy Cat Kitana
Release Date - 2015
Genre - Horror/Comedy
Tagline - "An education you can really sink your teeth into!"
Format - Streaming (Online Screener)

Rating (out of 5):
     Lately I have been lucky enough to check out a few slightly original vampire flicks beginning with Big Biting Pig's The Caretakers which was a fairly fun film that was a vast improvement over their other film Lucid.  I followed that review up with another vampire flick titled Mostly Dead.  This was the filmmaker's first film and was a bit tough to watch but I was very grateful he allowed me the chance to check it out.  The last few months I have been sharing a lot of news on Balsamo's newest film Bite School.  Balsamo has a decent sized fan base due to his blend of perversion, humor, and horror.  I knew Bite School would be no different so I reached out to Balsamo and when the film was finally available to check out he sent it my way.  Thank you James for being a friend to me and Horror Society.
     The film follows millionaire playboy Tony (Balsamo) who lives a life of partying, drugs, and bitches.  He has made a name for himself in the tabloid magazines and entertainment news outlets and is known the world over for his party boy actions.  This has disgusted his grandfather (Herschell Gordon Lewis) who cuts him off from his fortune.  This devastates Tony and he is forced to live on the streets until he meets a young man who is in trouble with a lesbian gang.  He takes Tony in to help him get his life together and they both enroll in night classes to get their G.E.D.  Tony finds a young girl in his class that he takes a liking to and soon learns that she is a creature of the night.  They try to make their relationship work but her father, lord of the vampires, wants her to take over the dark underworld and sends his vampire horde to the school to get her back and kill Tony.
     Vampire films have always been one of my favorite horror sub-genres but recent years has seen an influx of crappy films released after the \dramatic vampire series Twilight and the romantic film adaptations of Anne Rice's work.  I can take my vampires with some humor or completely serious but I can't stand the romantic love triangles that these modern vampire flicks find themselves in.  Bite School is a return of the vampire films to horror comedies like Once Bitten and My Best Friend is a Vampire.  The film had some funny moments but was a little rough.  The acting in this one is great with Balsamo leading the film.  I have watched every flick he has directed/starred in and several other films he made appearances in and I have to say he has grown substantially. His roles have always been fun but this one easily takes the cake for being the funniest.  The remainder of the cast does a great job at keeping the story alive but there is way too many cameos resulting in a rough watch.  Balsamo is known for having dozens of cameos from metal legends and horror icons but this film has way too many.  The story for this one is fun and reminds me a lot of an 80s teen sex comedy except the teens are in their late twenties and early thirties.  I really enjoyed that aspect because vampire films rarely follow this story anymore.  The film has a lot of laughs and a lot of what the fuck moments but suffers horribly from too many cameos.  These slow the story down drastically resulting is some very dry scenes that really have nothing to do with the story.  Some are rather funny but most of them just feel out of place.  Finally, the film does have a few kills with most being the typical vampire bites on the neck but we do get some rather gory kills that more than make up for these lackluster deaths.  We get some decapitations, a face melting, and several more that make this vampire flick a must watch.  The practical effects are hit or miss and most could have been corrected with proper camerawork and editing.  Overall, Bite School is a film that has more laughs than it does bite and that's just the way I like em.  The film is funny and bloody but has several slow scenes that make the film uneven.  I definitely recommend checking this one out.

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