Comfortable and Furious

Blacula (1972)

Here at Ruthless, and thanks to our premier writer, Dave Franklin, we have a whole category of Blaxploitation films. After watching Dark Angel and the great Near Dark, the next one to roll out of Freevee was Blacula. So, I said to myself, “why not”? I should have spent more time objectively answering that rhetorical, but instead, I let the thing roll. 

I did watch it, but it took me 2 ½ days to actually finish a 93-minute movie. The film started off promising enough with Mamuwalde (William Marshal) an African Price, who traveled to Europe to meet with an aristocrat, and discuss the ending of slave trade. Unfortunately, the aristocrat was Count Dracula, who insulted the prince with unsavory comments about his beautiful wife. The ensuing imbroglio resulted in a neck-bite from Dracula, and Mamuwalde being sealed in a coffin, now a vampire. 

200 years hence, two Interior Dick Orators had bought up the appurtenances from Dracula’s estate, and transferred them to their Antique Shop in Los Angeles. Of course, these antiques included the coffin, and predictably they opened it, releasing a ravenous Mamuwalde. The aforementioned events were the high point of the movie, unfortunately, as the remaining hour of the movie was pedestrian and downright boring. 

The balance of the movie was spent in downtown Los Angeles, mostly at the police station and morgue, or at a typical night club, where the air was filled with 5th Dimension sounding music, funky dress and huge afros. While investigating the deaths of the two unfortunate “faggots” [Editor’s Note: Look, don’t blame me for 70’s-style police rhetoric], Dr. Gordon Thomas (Thalmus Rasulala) noticed suspicious aspects of the two deaths. Mamuwalde, of course, makes an appearance at one of these nightclubs, and spots Tina (Vonetta McGee), who is an un-dead ringer for his long-ago princess, who perished in the initial dust-up with Count Dracula. They of course fall instantly in love. 

The rest of this “thriller” consisted of Dr. Thomas trying to figure out the mysteries, and as the vampires multiplied, he began to suspect that the occult was in play. The ensuing encounters with Blacula and the inept L.A. cops were more predictable and comical than horrific and the movie wound its way to its inevitable conclusion. 

5.0/10.0 With the Goatesian Rating of weak, even for an ancient blaxploitation film. 

Special Ruthless Ratings -or- What I learned from Blacula

  • The number of times I paused the movie to do something else: Numerous
  • The number of times the street cops looked inept or downright comical: Every single time
  • If you are an attractive black woman, you will fall instantly in love with a stalking stranger if he is also black and has a deep voice
  • The number of times you laughed during the movie: Once, when Dr. Gordon pulled out the crucifix and Blacula said, “Don’t bother”

Quotes and One-Liners:

  • “That’s the rudest nigger I’ve ever seen in my life.” -Swenson
  • “Who in the Hell would want a dead faggot?” -Lt. Jack Peters
  • “Make it a Bloody Mary” -Mamuwalde [ordering a drink]
  • “You ain’t getting this nigger in no graveyard at night.” -Michelle
  • “Strange on how many sloppy police jobs involve black victims.” -Bobby McCoy



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