Brian James O’Connell’s “Bloodsucking Bastards” is that type of comedy where characters speak in rapid fire pace and never actually say anything. Every character in “Bloodsucking Bastards” yammers on endlessly, and it’s all just palaver and white noise, eventually. Every attempt at a hilarious one-liners or goofy situations fails to land, making the entire affair one big misfire. This alleged horror comedy is neither comical nor very scary. Granted, there are some eerie moments, but nothing really ramps up the tension or the stakes. Fran Kanz plays Evan Sanders, a workaday cubicle jockey for a closed off telemarketing office building that sells various products.
Though aiming for the big promotion, he’s passed over in favor of an old college rival named Max, who takes over operations and begins focusing on streamlining the company. Things spiral out of control when Evan’s co-workers begin disappearing and then re-appearing as loyal office drones rather than the usual apathetic minimum wage workers they once were. Before long Evan realizes the whole office is being taken over by vampires, and, for whatever reason the master vampire has their eye on Evan’s girlfriend Amanda. Now hoping to survive, Evan teams up with his remaining co-workers to save his girlfriend before she’s eaten. O’Connell’s film actually makes vampires seem even less menacing than they ever were.
The script places them in an office setting for some crude allegory about a company takeover that ends up being interesting only until the finale. You can sense the sheer desperation to elicit some form of laughter from the group behind the film, as characters drop one-liners and bounce insults off of one another like it’s going out of style. All the while O’Connell introduces the elements of the vampires that results in some nice gory moments of carnage, but feel grossly tacked on. Plus, it’s really tough to involve yourself with the unfolding terror when not a single character is likable or charming. I almost didn’t care if anyone survived, and just wanted to see more of the solid vampire effects.
The vampire facial prosthetics are quite good, along with an accompaniment by some pretty nifty splatter effects. O’Connell anxiously aspires to deliver his own “Shaun of the Dead” (even the theme song sounds like a variation on the theme from “Shaun”) combined with “Office Space,” trying to add dimension and nuance to his central hero, but it’s unsuccessful. Instead the film feels a lot more like one long stale viral comedy segment. Only co-star Emma Fitzpatrick comes out of the affair smelling like roses, as her depiction of the hot but courageous jilted ex of Evan is fun to watch. “Blood Sucking Bastards” is brutally mediocre and instantly forgettable filler with admirable aspirations that never take off.
Featured on the Blu-Ray from Shout!, there’s a four minute outtake reel, a four minute on the set segment for the film with some B roll footage and clips, and a six minute reel of deleted scenes labeled as “Easter Eggs” for some reason. Finally, there’s the original trailer, and an audio commentary from the comedy troupe Dr. God, which compiles the film’s director, writer, and most of the cast. They have a good time with the commentary and had an apparent great time making the movie. It’s too bad the fun and raucous energy never carries over in to the final product.