Cast: Bhaskar, Jadine Wong, Rhonda Fultz, George Patterson, Riley Mills, John Damon, Elizabeth Marner-Brooks, Richard Bowler, Tyde Kierny, Iris Brooks, Alex Mann, Bruno Damon, Mike Gentry, Arlene Farber, Lynn Lowry
Directed by: David Durston
I Drink Your Blood is what Grindhouse cinema was created to acheive. It is one of those films that does what it says on the tin, whilst subjecting 1970s post Charles Manson America to its own fetid paranoia of the satantic drug-riddled hippy cult.
Horace Bones' memorable opening quote sums the film up very nicely:
"Let it be known, sons and daughters, that Satan was an acid head. Drink from his cup; pledge yourselves. And together, we'll all freak out."
After raping and attacking a young girl, who was privy to their satantic woodland ritual, and who later flees, our travelling ensemble of hippy cultists decide to stop off in a small town, which is also home to said girl.
As they contine to wreak havoc within the close-knit community, their shenanigans begin to cause conflict with the locals. After some confrontational maimings, a young boy decides to take action (and revenge) by spiking certain pie products with rabies...
...as the hippies dig in they ultimately start to become infected.
Cue complete chaos, as the infected stalk and attack anybody who crossses their path. Infection is also spread to a group of locals, who accept the invitation of an easy lay with one of the infected hippy group, and pay dearly for a bit of free n easy hippy love. From the inception of infection until the final showdown, I Drink Your Blood is non-stop, fast paced slaughter romp, which should play to the tastes of many a exploitation fan.
For such a simple premise, the film is brilliantly assembled with murder and mayhem aplenty. But, what would appear to be wacky abandon, is actually cleverly crafted grindhouse gold, with some superb performances, the most note-worthy of which are from Bhaskar, who plays the cult leader Horace Bones, and the manic George Patterson as Rollo. Add to this face paced thrills and kills and you have all the makings of a classic.
I Drink Your Blood may appear to be a brainless gore-fest and a product of the 70s Grindhouse conveyor on the surface, but it certainly has hidden depths. A darkly tinged tale of consequence and despair lurk underneath its blood-drenched axe weilding exterior. A good case in point is the very bleak (and in my opinion preferred) alternative ending, which certainly punctuates the preceding events nicely.
One of my favourite films from the 1970s, I Drink Your Blood is a classic mix of exploitation, terror, and carnage but with a dry wit and solid performances to back up its slick style and execution.
My Rating: 9/10