Every weekend, I host a bad movie night online with friends across the planet. The conception of this weekly delving into film torture came from a desire to balance the professional and acclaimed movies we had been watching up to that point. Additionally, I grew up watching MST3K, so this was a hobby for me already. We have seen many, many terrible movies over the 20 or so weekends I have been doing this—3 films a night. This past weekend brought us a boring WWE revenge movie, a Syfy Channel monster movie about giant snakes, and the jewel of the night: Dracula 3000.
Dracula 3000 is the story about the crew of the salvage vessel Mother III checking out a tip on a derelict vessel. The captain of the ship is Abraham Van Helsing, who commands a crew of five other personnel. If you’re a fan of backstories less than 2 sentences long and personalities heavily dipped in stereotypes, you’re going to have a blast. We have the Professor, who is an intelligent scientist that is wheelchair bound; Mina, who is a pilot that constantly gets lost; 187, a drug addict who’s pursuit of vice is literally the plot trigger; Humvee, a buff guy who boasts of how endowed he is; and Aurora, who dual-roles as both vice-captain and eye candy. The Captain is no nonsense and thick headed. There are two other cast members, both with the unfortunate problem of being completely forgettable. One of them is the main villain.
We climb into the derelict vessel, named the Demeter, and see the crew begin the process of scouting the ship for valuables. For crew member 187, this means looking for new stock to go up in his smoke. The class of ship they’re on was famous for being used by smugglers for hauling illegal substances across the space ways. With Humvee in tow, they find a cargo room with nothing but caskets on the floor. Naturally, 187 comes decides to stomp into the casket to get at its contents. The casket breaks open to only hold what they believe to be sand, and they break open more to find similar contents inside. The breaking of these caskets results in a cut and a drop of blood falling into the sand. Of course, we know the sand to be ashes, but I can only guess cremation has fallen out of favor in the 31st century.
Next, we see the movie develop the reason why the crew can’t just abandon ship and leave. After the Professor fixes the Space Soviet Operating system and gets the ship’s systems to come back online, their home ship, Mother III, mysteriously flies away. Now stranded, the crew drops the repair job on the crippled Professor and has Mina guard him. Shortly after, 187 is bitten and turned vampire. Soon after, Aurora meets our main villain, Count Orlock, who delightfully fills us in with exposition and then proceeds to bite her. She finds her human comrades and then tells them everything that she learned—Count Orlock’s clan of vampires hail from the dead planet Transylvania. Yes, the planet Transylvania. The surviving crew’s reaction is actually natural, that they’re immediately suspect of her humanity being intact. They tie her up and the Captain goes off, leaving Humvee to guard her. It is at this time that 187 knocks on their cabin door.
187 is known to the crew as a vampire already, yet pleads with Humvee to let him in, because of their brotherhood. After a few jump cuts in and out of this scene, Humvee acquiesces and lets 187 in. 187 mocks Humvee for his stupidity and attacks the two crew members in the cabin. The Captain returns after leaving the Professor alone and distracts 187 with gunfire. With this distraction, Humvee stabs 187 through the heart with a wooden pool cue. They finally have a weapon against the vampires, but they don’t know if they can bring the vampires down. The Professor changes course of the Demeter to a nearby sun.
The final stretch of this film was hastily written and acted, which was easy to tell as the film neared the end of its run time. With time running out, the crew makes attempts at the attack against the vampires. The conflict really has no sense of danger, as the few other vampires Orlock has been able to raise from the ashes were swiftly killed while they were in their caskets. The Professor is left alone again and is finally turned. Only Humvee and Aurora are left. As we near the end of the film, the plot seemingly gives up and Humvee and Aurora go off to fulfill Humvee’s carnal desires. Then the Demeter explodes as it gets too close to the sun. The end.
This summary of the film really does not do it justice. While the film is completely abominable in every aspect of its existence, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy it. Rather than being the awkwardly acted, horribly written horror film they made, I see it as a comedy. A comedy of ineptitude of the highest order, and immensely entertaining if you start the film knowing it’s going to be terrible.