Horrorfest 2015 Presents: Vampire In Brooklyn (1995, Wes Craven)

Lost in the discussion about Wes Craven’s career is that he engaged in comedic moments in many of his horror films. One such movie was Vampire In Brooklyn, a rather entertaining and fun horror comedy that has some good funny moments and even a few scares. Eddie Murphy in a rare horror movie role stars as a vampire seeking a cop played by Angela Bassett, who happens to be half human and half vampire. Without her the line of vampires from the Caribbean will finally die off. This movie has some decent homages to previous vampire films, and is also Wes Craven’s own take on the sub genre.

Much like some of his other films Craven presents social and political commentary. Murphy turns into a preacher and manages to convince an entire congregation that they should turn to evil. Unfortunately considering the hate many so called Christians push today such a moment is relevant and also darkly humorous to a degree. Also you have the police failing to comprehend and understand what they are dealing with, another theme that is prevalent in not only Craven’s work but also in many horror movies. I rather like how Craven is able to balance humor and horror, two genres that are tricky to get right.

Also it’s cool that he cast Zakes Mokae as a vampire hunter, since he was a horror veteran and he was great in The Serpent and the Rainbow, another Craven film. John Witherspoon and Kadeem Hardison provide additional comedic relief, yet it is Bassett who gives a strong performance and has superb chemistry with Murphy. It’s too bad that Eddie Murphy only made one horror film as he has a menacing presence. Despite its flaws this is an good, solid movie and is an example of how vampire movies contain views on society, religion and repressed feelings.

Hey Remember When Eddie Murphy Used To Be Funny?

I actually am old enough to answer that question, sadly enough. He went from making great and fun 80s comedies (with even action thrown in) to slumming it in family movies. Although I will admit that he wisely choose the Shrek series, even though only the first two of those movies were any good. Spike TV recently paid homage to Murphy, and I imagine most of the clips screened were from movies he made prior to 1997, save for Shrek. How depressing.

Regardless Beverly Hills Cop (1984) was one of the few remaining 80s comedies I hadn’t seen yet. Well that was quickly rectified thanks to Netflix Instant Viewing, which also has the second Beverly Hills Cop movie, too. Judge Reinhold is even in this plus it has a fantastically dated soundtrack, so naturally this movie is pure 80s awesome. You really can’t go wrong with a film this entertaining or funny, and while I doubt the other movies following it are as good, I’m still going to check them out anyways. All Hail 80s Eddie Murphy.

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