LOS MUERTOS (1996)
Notes: 94 minutes.
Starring: Jon Bon Jovi, Cristian de la Fuente, Arly Jover and Darius McCrary.
Summary: Whose idea was it to cast Jon Bon Jovi in a leading role? This movie wasn’t a very popular release and it’s easy to see why.
Derek Bliss, played by Bon Jovi, is a high maintenance vampire hunter employed by the Van Helsing group. (Nice reference to the novel character). He is sent on an assignment to recruit a group of hunters and defeat a vampire mob that has been terrorizing the New Mexico area. Unfortunately, vampires kill the other hunters before Bliss can get to them. He is forced to create a second-string group of hunters whom he finds along the way. They travel to New Mexico, find the vampires, and after a series of trial and error attempts, they kill the head vampire and save the city.
Scenes that are supposed to be dramatic are either ruined by poor writing, sad delivery, or the underlying expectation that Bon Jovi is going to bust out a guitar and play a rock ballad for Zoe, one of the hunters with whom he has chemistry. The opening scene is a perfect example of all three. A man is approached by a hooker on a ghetto street and agrees to her services. He pulls her into a dark alleyway and puts a knife to her throat threatening to kill her if she screams. Bliss comes from behind the attacker and places a large gun-like weapon to his head.
He says, “If I let this trigger go, it would hurt you a lot.”
The mugger leaves and the prostitute asks Bliss, “What can I do to thank you?”
“Give me a smile, sugar,” he replies as he raises his weapon and shoots two miniature wooden stakes into her mouth and chest. She is an unexpected vampire, but the stupid line, “Give me a smile, sugar” undermines the surprise.
Stick to music.
Singers should sing. Actors should act.