11th Apr2013

‘Bloodstone: Subspecies 2′ Blu-ray Review

by Phil Wheat

BLOODSTONE: SUBSPECIES 2
Stars: Anders Hove, Denice Duff, Kevin Spirtas, Melanie Shatner, Michael Denish, Pamela Gordon, Ion Haiduc | Written and Directed by Ted Nicolaou

Radu

The centuries-old conflict that has plagued the villages of Transylvania explodes into bloodshed. The mad vampire Radu (Hove) becomes obsessed with Michelle (Duff), who loves his half-mortal brother Stefan. In his quest to possess Michelle and the sacred relic, the Bloodstone, Radu destroys Stefan as he sleeps. Michelle steals the Bloodstone and escapes from Radu’s castle. She finds a lair beneath a theatre in Bucharest and stalks the streets in torment, torn between her fading humanity and her growing thirst for blood. Radu, desperate to regain the Bloodstone, seeks help from his monstrous mother, the ageless sorceress Mummy, who demands the he destroy Michelle before she destroys him…

Released two years after the original film this time round Anders Hove’s experience as the character see the actor turn in a superb scene-stealing OTT performance as he hunts down Denise Duff’s Michelle who, replacing Laura Tate, gives the character much more layers and depth as Michelle fights her vampirific urges and desires. The cast is rounded out by the fantastic Melanie Shatner as Rebecca; Michael Denish as Professor Nicolai Popescu, an eccentric professor and Ion Haiduc as a seemingly comical cop – both of whom provide some much-needed comic relief in this much-more serious take on vampire lore. Once again the location plays a big part in this story and the Bucharest streets provide all the creepy atmosphere a vampire movie could possibly want.

Whereas the original movie felt like a low-budget, yet refreshing, take on the vampire mythos, Subspecies 2 feels like a completely fresh start for the series. With a director more in control of his story and actors more comfortable in their roles (and some replaced by better actors to be honest) this sequel takes everything that was good about the first film and turns it up to eleven. Which means that Subspecies 2 joins the small pantheon of sequels that surpass the original film.

The 88 Films Blu-ray of Subspecies 2 is superb, the picture quality is excellent and the lossless 5.1 DTS sound is the best the film has EVER sounded. Plus, for the purists, the disc features the original stereo mix too. Special features include a commentary track, featurette and a montage of the series’ best moments; and if you’re not a fan of the new artwork, this Blu-ray release comes complete with a reversible cover!

Bloodstone: Subspecies 2 is out now on DVD and Blu-ray from 88 Films.

 ***** 5/5

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