The Return of Count Yorga (Blu-ray / Movie Review)
I kept putting off watching and reviewing The Return of Count Yorga, as I assumed it was going to be another old vampire flick trying to be funny, but thankfully, I was completely wrong. There is a bit of humour here and there, but the film has plenty of spooky moments and dreadful scenes. It’s a love story at heart, but not without some bloodshed. The Scream Factory release comes across a little soft in the video, but for a film that was released in 1971, it’s not looking bad in the least bit. Read on to see the full assessment… if you dare!
SUBTITLES: English REGION: A RATING: R PRODUCTION DATE: 1971 RELEASE DATE: Oct 13, 2015
A horrifying love story… with bite! When the overlord of the damned rises again to prowl the shadows, who will stand against The Return Of Count Yorga? Robert Quarry is back as one of the most dapper vampires to ever set up shop in California in this thrilling sequel that really raises the stakes. Revived by the well-known supernatural properties of the Santa Ana winds, our undead leading man takes to the streets with an unquenchable thirst. In search of new blood, Yorga moves next door to an orphanage. But when he crosses paths with a beautiful young woman, the Count’s thoughts turn to love. Has the ruler of the night finally found the girl with whom he can share eternity? Featuring Mariette Hartley, Roger Perry and Craig T. Nelson in his screen debut, this biting vampire flick will thrill you horror fans…Yorga-nna love this one.
After the Santa Ana winds blow through town, Count Yorga, along with his undead beauties, rise up from the ground (personally, the only winds I know to raise the dead are after chili night) to feast on the living. This wouldn’t be a vampire without the main vamp falling in love and Count Yorga does just that with the beautiful Mariette Hartley playing the hapless victim. He uses his powerful mind tricks to convince her to stay with him, but her fiancé has other plans and goes about trying to rescue her.
The Return of Count Yorga was a fun movie to check out. It had all the right ingredients to entertain my tiny brain. I was worried that it was going to try to be too humorous for its own good, but save for a couple of detectives (one played by Poltergeist’sCraig T. Nelson) who spouted out a few funny lines that actually worked, the movie played it serious. There actually is a few scenes that were genuinely scary. One death in the film was completely dreadful and I can’t imagine dying that way. I won’t spoil it.
What I found really neat in this movie was the references to vampires and vampire films. There is one scene where Count Yorga is watching a vampire flick and he seems to be really enjoying it. It’s quite funny to be honest.
As for the acting, Robert Quarry who plays the undead Count steals the show with charisma up the ying-yang. I was lost in his eyes every moment he was on screen. He speaks the lines with such eloquence, that you can forgive some of the cheesiness of it all. The other actors in the movie are perfectly fine, but it’s the Count who is the star performer in this one.
Scream Factory releases a serviceable Blu-ray, with a fancy intro screen, but not much in the features department. The disc contains an audio commentary, a trailer, radio spots and a photo gallery. The video is a little soft in spots, but overall it’s looking quite nice. Same goes for the audio, which is DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0.
BLU-RAY SPECIAL FEATURES
Audio Commentary With Film Historian Steve Haberman And Actor Rudy De Luca
The Return of Count Yorga was a pleasant surprise for me. It was a fun film, with some groovy scenes and Robert Quarry as Yorga is phenomenal. Scream Factory releases it on an almost barebones disc, save for a commentary and a few trailers, but for the right price, it’s a guaranteed purchase.