Eternal (2004) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

Eternal is a vampire-type story "inspired by true events," those events in this case being that some low-budget vampire movies have made a buck or two. Oh, I guess the quote on the DVD box really refers to some "true events" which happened in Shakespeare's lifetime, although the movie itself takes place in the present. The inspirational events involve a 17th century Hungarian countess named Elizabeth Bathory, who is said to have attempted to stay young by bathing in the blood of as many as 600 young female virgins.

She may or may not have done the bloodbaths, but she was infamous for having brutally tortured and otherwise humiliated young women.

The Straight Dope remarked:

The testimony of her servants left no doubt that she was a mass murderer (610 victims were found listed in a notebook in her room). But no evidence was taken regarding her alleged bloodbaths and vampirism. Contemporary accounts, however, indicate that she was universally believed to be guilty on the first score. More recent historians think she was guilty on the second as well. She is known to have enjoyed biting her victims, and according to one translator a passage in the sentence of her servants refers to her as "a blood-thirsty, blood-sucking Godless woman [who was] caught in the act at Csejthe Castle."

You may be interested in these birth and death dates

  • William Shakespeare, 1564-1616
  • Miguel de Cervantes, 1547-1616
  • Elizabeth Bathory, 1560-1614

The parallel lives belong to two great and compassionate authors, maybe the greatest of all time in their respective languages, and one sadistic monster. As Charles Dickens might have remarked, it was an age of moderation, it was an age of excess; the common man was everything, the common man was nothing.

You may not know this unless you are a current or former Liberal Arts major, but Cervantes and Shakespeare both died on the same day: April 23, 1616. That combo sure beats the hell out of Richie Valens and Buddy Holly. The only death-combo I can recall which might rival Cervantes/Shakespeare in significance would be John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, who both died on July 4, 1826, a coincidence made even more significant by the fact that it happened to be the 50th birthday of the country they helped to found.

Back to the incredibly true movie ...

Based upon her bathing habits, I gather that the Bride of Dracula in this film, aka Elizabeth Kane, is the notorious Countess Elizabeth Bathory. Since she is still alive in the 21st century, and still looking pretty hot, I guess we must conclude that her bloodbath technique really is the fountain of youth. Since the film is inspired by true events, I am trying to figure out if I can obtain some virgin blood without actually killing anyone. Do hospitals ever sell blood? Maybe I can just go down to the blood bank and open a Christmas Club account.

Countess Dracula, or Bathory, or Kane, kills the wife of a Montreal police officer. (I guess virgin blood is just too hard to find.) The policeman follows the trail to her lair, and becomes transfixed by her, thus continuing to investigate her and woo her simultaneously, ala Basic Instinct.

I think the best way to describe Eternal is as follows: imagine that you have a tape of a late-night cable sex show with some pretty slick production values. You also have a impish techno-nerd of a roommate who goes through your tape and digitally adds clothing to all the participants in the sex scenes. The result would be Eternal, which has most of the liabilities of a sex film and almost none of the pleasures. It has routine direction, uninspired acting, unknown cast members, and a plethora of sex scenes. Some of the sex scenes are quite kinky and stylized. Yet there is virtually no nudity. We see the star's bum as she rises from her blood bath, but the scene is dark and her ass is dark red, so she may be wearing a thong and we'd never know it. There is some brief breast exposure, and that's just about it.

Oh, and to make matters worse, the film takes itself seriously.

Trust me on this. Although the film is not completely incompetent, you really aren't interested.



  • No features except the original trailer
  • the transfer is not anamorphically enhanced, and is not especially vivid



Olona Elkin - breasts

Caroline Neron - bum, in dark scene, covered with blood.

The Critics Vote ...

  • James Berardinelli 2/4

The People Vote ...

  • Box Office Mojo. Inexplicably, it received a brief theatrical run (9 screens), in which it grossed $28,000.
The meaning of the IMDb score: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence equivalent to about three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, comparable to approximately two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, equivalent to about a two star rating from the critics, or a C- from our system. Films rated below five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film - this score is roughly equivalent to one and a half stars from the critics or a D on our scale. (Possibly even less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. (C+ means it has no crossover appeal, but will be considered excellent by genre fans, while C- indicates that it we found it to be a poor movie although genre addicts find it watchable). D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well. Any film rated C- or better is recommended for fans of that type of film. Any film rated B- or better is recommended for just about anyone. We don't score films below C- that often, because we like movies and we think that most of them have at least a solid niche audience. Now that you know that, you should have serious reservations about any movie below C-.

Based on this description, it's a D. It has no general appeal, and I just can't imagine any genre fans who will appreciate it either. It isn't scary enough for horror buffs; it isn't sexy enough for horrotica fans; and it doesn't have the explicitly violent fare required by gorehounds.

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