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Metamorphosis (2007)

1/10/2011. Contributed by Rod MacDonald

Buy Metamorphosis in the USA - or Buy Metamorphosis in the UK

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region 2 DVD: pub: Network 5027626348045. 98 minute film. Price GBP 8.16 (UK). stars: Christopher Lambert, Cory Sevier and Irena Hoffman.

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Several movies of this name, ‘Metamorphosis’, have been made over the years. This is a production from Hungary dating from 2007 with Christopher Lambert as the big-name star. It wasn't a great success at the box office, mainly because there were lots of other vampire movies on the go, but its release on DVD by Network comes at a time when this genre is still very popular especially on TV.

The story is quite familiar. A group of young people somehow, against the advice of those who know better, venture into the Carpathian Mountains looking for the castle of the blood Countess, an evil woman from the 17th century. What they do not know is that the daughter of this Countess is still alive as a vampire, of course, and forms a romantic relationship with a young man from the group.

After all sorts of problems, they eventually make it to the castle accompanied by a priest, a nun and an odd couple picked up on the way. Meeting wolves was a bad enough experience for them but in the castle they also meet up with the chief vampire, Christopher Lambert himself. Actually, he makes a very good vampire, sufficiently menacing to chill any spine!

Apart from Christopher, the main characters are played by Cory Sevier and Irena Hoffman. The latter is the blonde vampire, very attractive and seductive, who should have a health warning attached to her body somewhere noticeable. Many of the other characters are played by Hungarians and the director is Jeno Hodi, also from the same country.

Apart from stuff about vampires, there are some confusing issues concerning dimensional shifts and levels of purgatory. Heaven and hell seem to be dimensions as well but this didn't come through with any clarity to be of interest to theologians or innocent bystanders alike. Perhaps this was an attempt to give the vampire story another twist but it probably wasn't successful because the message didn't come through in a meaningful way.

There are miserable beggars like myself who think that Christopher Lee was the only proper vampire and that no vampire film is any good unless Peter Cushing is there as Dr. Van Helsing but it must be said that Christopher Lambert's vampire was pretty good. A commanding performance and it's a shame that the other parts do not quite measure up to this standard.

In saying that, acting throughout the movie wasn't that bad and for a low-budget production, this movie was reasonably successful. The scenery was pleasant to watch and it definitely had a Hammer horror aura, especially with jokers in the hostelry who looked like peasants having a bad day.

This isn't a bad movie and it's not a great movie. It fits somewhere in the spectrum between the two and it probably depends on what mood you are in when you watch it. It passes the time, sufficiently entertaining to be an alternative to some of the rubbish on TV. In that respects, it can be recommended but I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.

Rod MacDonald

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