SCREAM, BLACULA, SCREAM (1973)
Directed by Bob Kelljan
on Dual Format as part of Blacula: The Complete Collection
After a row over who should become the leader of a voodoo cult, wannabe leader Willis resurrects black vampire Mamuwalde using his black magic and is turned into a vampire. Unleashed upon the world once again, Blacula feeds his insatiable hunger but finds that a young woman named Lisa could use her powerful voodoo talents to rid him of his vampire curse for good.
Voodoo meants vampirism in Blacula sequel, SCREAM, BLACULA, SCREAM. The films takes part of the original movie’s plot, where an individual working with the police spots that recent slayings could be vampire related forcing them to hunt down the culprit, and sprinkles in a new storyline of Mamuwalde’s desire to rid himself of his vampirism. Unlike the first film that had a funkadelic vibe complete with grooving soundtrack, SCREAM, BLACULA, SCREAM lacks in vibrance, fun and personality, leaving a dimmer movie than we have seen previously.
The sequel sees William Marshall reprise his role of the smooth-talking African prince Mamuwalde turned vampire known as Blacula. Like his previous outing, he comes across as a gentleman but at the same time easily gives into his vampiristic side, sucking the blood of afro beauties and beating up police officers. Pam Grier joins SCREAM, BLACULA, SCREAM as Lisa, the powerful voodoo practitioner, who becomes the target of Mamuwalde due to her exceptional talents. However, with his new recruit Wallis eager to dethrone Lisa as top of their voodoo religion in the area, Mamuwalde must ensure her safety if he is to b cured of his vampirism.
A weak script and screenplay means there’s not much in the sequel to keep the characters busy nor the viewer that entertained. Pam Grier feels underused and even William Marshall’s Blacula screentime feels less than that of its predecessor, or maybe it was because he wasn’t given much to do other than gaze over African jewellery and impart his wisdom when not sucking blood.
Whilst taken in the same vein as Blacula, a horror with a humorous streak, there seems to be less comic moments in this sequel. Instead the focus seems to be on the vampire hoarde of Mamuwalde and despite their goofy fangs jutting over their lips, the make-up of some of the vampires is quite frightening, especially when viewed close up when they quickly fly at the camera. Once again though, SCREAM, BLACULA, SCREAM lacks any real blood or gore, instead opting to show exaggerated fight scenes. At least in the sequel, more weapons than stakes are used that adds a little variety.
SCREAM, BLACULA, SCREAM has been packaged with Blacula as a dual format release in the Blacula – The Complete Collection from distributor Eureka Entertainment. With its high definition transfer, the disc also contains the trailers for each movie and a 20 odd minute discussion of the movies with critic Kim Newman. The release also comes packaged with a 32 page booklet with writings about the film and rare imagery from the movie.
Whilst the film no doubt has its flaws and isn’t as effective as it could be, it’s still entertaining in its own blaxpolitation horror style. Any fan of horror would be pleased to have these movies in their collection or at least to see them, though the original is definitely the stronger and fun-filled of the two.