Terrible Vampire Movies: Subspecies (1991)

Everyone has a cinematic guilty pleasure — the movies you know are really not great, but you love them anyway. For me, it is terrible vampire movies. Their low-budget earnestness often delivers more of what I want out of a vampire movie than any of the big name offerings seem to manage. And, more importantly, they are just plain fun. So, with “fun” as our codeword, here is the inaugural entry in our Terrible Vampire Movies column.

We’re starting with one of my (apologies to Chloe) personal favorites: Ted Nicolaou’s Subspecies.

There are apparently four — soon to be five — movies in this series, but I won’t drag you all that far down the rabbit hole. We will be focusing on the original 1991 film, which I trot out for viewing every October like clockwork. The leaves turn orange, and I have a Pavlovian need to watch it. The basic premise of Subspecies is classic horror movie fare: three folklore students working on their Masters theses come to the small Romanian village of Prejnar to study local vampire stories, only to discover that there is more truth to the legends than expected. So far, pretty much as expected, right? Well, buckle up, friends — it’s going to get a little weird.

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