Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Only now does it occur to me... FROM DUSK TILL DAWN 2: TEXAS BLOOD MONEY

Only now does it occur to me... that as far as straight-to-video sequels to moderately successful cult vampire-Westerns from the 1990s go, FROM DUSK TILL DAWN 2: TEXAS BLOOD MONEY is not quite so satisfying as VAMPIRES 2: LOS MUERTOS.  Still, there are a few things going on worth mentioning.

"Executive produced" by Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino, I'm assuming that only means they were willing to lend their names to the project in exchange for a royalty check.  In reality, this is the Scott Spiegel (the Sam Raimi crony who brought us INTRUDER) and Duane Whitaker (a Tarantino crony) show, two men whose ambitions exceed their abilities, though they do have a fair amount of action-movie-moxie. It kinda feels like a movie William Lustig or Lewis Teague might've cranked out on a bad day.

Pictured: action-movie-moxie.

The film opens with unexpected cameos by Bruce Campbell and Tiffani-Amber Thiessen ("Kelly Kapowski" from SAVED BY THE BELL), playing two sleazy lawyers who are killed by CGI bats in an elevator.
Bruce Campbell has made a specialty act out of appearing in a number of bad movies for less than five minutes.

Then it develops into a vampire-heist movie starring Robert Patrick (TERMINATOR 2), who looks appropriately "cool," but he's given very little of substance to do.
It's sad that Patrick is given the rare leading man opportunity in something this weak, because I know he has the chops to really pull it off.  Ah, well.

Spiegel also shows off his pet obsession of Italo-Horror (and Sam Raimi)-inspired ridiculous POV shots (also on full display in his slasher INTRUDER).  The best one here is probably the oscillating fan-POV in a dingy hotel.
(Also note: CLEAR AND PRESENT DANGER and BREAKING BAD's Raymond Cruz accompanying Mr. Patrick.)

Anyway, there's a lot of Dick Dale surf rock and vampires and explosions and Danny Trejo shows up for a bit as "Razor Eddie," presumably the twin brother of the deceased "Razor Charlie" from the first FROM DUSK TILL DAWN.

Trejo runs it up the flagpole.

I'm not despairing, though: I have heard promising things about FROM DUSK TILL DAWN 3, which takes the franchise back a hundred years and stars the inimitable Michael Parks as famed author Ambrose Bierce (!?). 


John Guedes said...

Been a while since I've seen this, but from what I remember, it was pretty bad.

The POV shots were a nice touch though, I think there was even a telephone cord POV shot!

Sean Gill said...


Yeah... I'm holding out for FDTD III being a little better (specifically due to the aforementioned Michael Parks factor). And I do love my horror POV shots!

John Guedes said...

I think you'll find the third installment to be a big step up from this one. Have you seen the tv series?

Jack Thursby said...

Woah, woah, woah. Vampires Los Muertos over this! That's fightin' talk.

I know I'm in the minority (possibly the only person) but this is my favourite of the franchise.

Scott Spiegel's dogged insistence at shooting everything from someone or something's POV is breath-taking (and far better executed than the tedious Intruder).

And how can you not talk about Raymond Cruz's epic flashback/shaggy dog story.

I just wish it had a bit more budget for an epic ending.

For me the third one was the weakest. It just isn't as crazy as the first two. I think you might have some fun with it though. As I recall it may have a stinger after the credits (or might have been a deleted scene).

Sean Gill said...


Heheh, well perhaps I exaggerate re: LOS MUERTOS, but then again, you can't keep a good vampire-huntin' Bon Jovi down. I respect Spiegel's ambition and style, I just feel as if he can't quite pull off the kinetic moviemaking like his buddy Sam Raimi could.

And I do love me some Raymond Cruz in this; he was totally a staple of 90s "men with guns" cinema, especially in CLEAR AND PRESENT DANGER and THE SUBSTITUTE.