Starring Fran Kranz, Pedro Pascal, Emma Fitzpatrick
Directed by Brian James O’Connell
Are you continuously bitching because the boss is asking you to show up early for work, only to ask you to stay late? Have you ever truly wondered WHY he wants you to do that? Well, the next time you’re ready to file a grievance about unfair labor practices, you might want to consider the alternative – you could be working for a bunch of vampires… no, not the type that bleed you dry of your paycheck and downtime – the real ones! Although these creatures of the night don’t sparkle, and they don’t war with shirtless werewolves.. .and they especially don’t tolerate employees being uncooperative. After all, work in an office environment is a team atmosphere, isn’t it?
Director Brian O’Connell’s vampire-horror/comedy Bloodsucking Bastards is the kind of film that takes the humor and charm of Office Space and throws it headlong into the blender with the villainous ferocity of Near Dark, repeatedly pressing “puree” until the ultimate hybrid is concocted. Okay, maybe not the ultimate hybrid, but this is one pretty funny presentation that should be witnessed by all that love a good laugh before, during, and after their gore.
The focal point of the film is Evan (Kranz), who is one dedicated, yet overworked employee of a company that solicits “As Seen On TV” products to gullible buyers. Temporarily serving as an acting sales manager, he currently oversees his friends Tim (Joey Kern), Mike (Neil W. Garguilo), and Andrew (Justin Ware), whose work ethic slightly represents that of a group of seated slugs. Add in the inconvenience of bitter ex-girlfriend Amanda (Fitzpatrick), who works only a few doors down in Human Resources – awkward to say the least. Seemingly, brighter days are on the horizon as Evan’s boss (Joel Murray) is getting closer to naming a new manager of sales, and he’s got a good feeling about this one.
Waiting for the “horror” yet? Hold tight – it’s coming. As the gut-punching news is given of a new sales manager hire named Max (Pedro Pascal from “Game of Thrones”), employees begin to start disappearing… then re-appearing as much paler, more serious versions of their former selves. From the nerdy office worker who’s constantly requesting NCAA-tournament pool money owed to him down to the sultry little secretary, the workers are evolving into something sinister – a much more dire situation than your typical disgruntled cubicle-dwellers.
As the souls start to cross over to the “dark side” if you will, Evan must rely on his own strength (with some help from the ample supply closet) while banding together with the remaining survivors in order to strike down this vampire uprising from becoming the worst possible corporate takeover. As I alluded to earlier, fans of comedies like Office Space and Shaun of the Dead will truly appreciate the laughs in this film, and let’s not overlook the gorehounds either – while not possessing the crimson quart quantity like the Evil Dead remake, there is an ample amount of the hemoglobin to heave around, especially in the film’s latter stages. The performances are solid in general, and outside of some randomly placed goofy jokes that fall flat, I couldn’t offer many complaints about this one.
Overall, these bastards have the goods to make even the biggest slackers want to clock in early, but just remember: Don’t call out sick, don’t refuse an assignment, and please keep the office blinds CLOSED. The management thanks you for your service.