27 August 2014

Martin (1977)
95 min.
Directed by George Romero.
With John Amplas, Lincoln Maazel, Christine Forrest, Tom Savini, Elayne Nadeau, George A. Romero.
An interesting modern variation on the vampire legend, from genre director George Romero.

Martin (Amplas) is a tormented young man with a big problem. He thinks he's plagued by a family curse of vampirism. He thinks he's doomed to stalk his victims and drink their blood.

"Thinks" is the operative word here.

In order for him to survive as a vampire, Martin sedates young women with a syringe full of drugs, slashes their wrists with a razor blade, and then drinks their free-flowing red stuff.

But is he truly a vampire, or is he just a disturbed psychopath?

The depression-era Pittsburgh setting, and a brooding atmosphere help keep Martin afloat.

The whole effort is also enhanced by an open ended storyline. We never do find out if this "vampire" is truly one, or if it's all in poor Martin's head.

Horror regular Amplas (he also appeared in 1981's Midnight and 1985's Day of the Dead) delivers a nice performance as the troubled young Martin.

Bleak and downtrodden, this might be too downbeat for some tastes.

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