Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Suck It, Day Seven - Night Stalker

Night Stalker

This is much more a detective story more than vampire story. Our hero is reporter chasing a hot story, and instead of seeing the stalking and killing of victims, we follow the reporter around to several crime scenes as he slowly pieces together the horrifying conclusion that there is a real-life vampire loose in Las Vegas and killing showgirls.

Once again all the old vampire lore is taken as a given here, though some elements are left out. This vampire can only be killed by a stake through the heart, and you can only do that during the day while he's asleep and more vulnerable and weak. But the difference here is that we don't even see the vampire until at least halfway through the film.

Kolchack is a bigshot reporter who's been fired from all kinds of papers and is stuck in Las Vegas. He finally gets a big story, a murder which turns out to be part of a series of murders. All the victims are showgirls, and they have something else in common - all of the blood has been drained from their bodies.

Something I kind of like about this is that it deals with the reality of such an absurd circumstance happening in the "real" world. One of my favorite scenes is when he is telling the police how to dispatch the vampire with a stake. Everyone thinks Kolchak is crazy, even when they have no choice but to accept what he's saying, and he ends up fired from the paper and run out of town (along with his girlfriend) for his efforts in getting the bad guy.

This was made for television and was so successful they made a sequel and eventually a TV series based on it. Great slice of the 1970s. Click below to see the final showdown.

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