Queen of the Damned (2000) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

The damned still have a queen, in the 20th century? No wonder they are always living in the past. Those pasty-faced mofos need to get themselves a taste of democracy.

By the way, Maxwell House Coffee may be good to the last drop, but that will not make it the preferred coffee of vampires.

Their rule: "You must never take the last drop, or it will draw you in, and you die."


That's only one of many culinary rules that these particular vampires subscribe to. They have so many dietary laws that the only way they can keep up is by biting rabbis.

That wacky Vampire Lestat is back again as one of their head honchos. The last time he showed up, Tom Cruise played him in Interview with a Vampire. Many of you may have noticed in the past that Tom Cruise has a whiny voice. Many people have even inferred from his voice and mannerisms that that he is gay, although there is no evidence to support that contention. Let me say this. After you see the actor who plays Lestat in Queen of the Damned, you will no longer question Cruise's machismo. You'll think Tom Cruise's interpretation is more macho than Vin Diesel and Bob Mitchum rolled together. This sumbich new Lestat doesn't glide, like other vamps, he sashays. You'll expect him to say "fiddle-de-dee" like Scarlett O'Hara. When you first see him, you think he might be a Cher impersonator, until you realize that this guy is much prettier, and Cher is much more masculine.

Not to mention more genuine.

Like Cher, Lestat has come back as a rock star older than time. Of course, he's a harder rocker than Cher, but the younger generation always goes for the heavy metal sound, and he's only a few thousand years old. When he gets to be Cher's age, he'll mellow into show tunes.

DVD info from Amazon.

  • widescreen anamorphic, 2.35:1

  • "Aaliyah remembered"

  • two other documentaries

  • feature-length director commentary

  • 13 deleted scenes

  • 3 music videos

This movie derives its character from the school of filmmaking which says you should create a high-style look, ala Art Nouveau swathed in a wrapping of Gothic, then move the camera around very fast while the cast impersonates what Blanche DuBois might have been like if she had lived long enough to join the Gene Simmons fan club.

Do you remember the cheese shop with no cheese? How about a vampire movie with no wild violence, sex, or horror? It takes itself seriously, as if style and attitude were the only requirements for entertainment. The best review from the British papers was 2/10 - less than one star!

There were rumors that the studio was going to shelve this film. I don't know what the original plan was, but when Aaliyah died, they resurrected it, and it drew a respectable $30 million in domestic gross.  

The Critics Vote

  • General panel consensus: two stars. Ebert 2/4, Berardinelli 1.5/4, filmcritic.com 3/5

  • General UK consensus: zero stars. Daily Mail 0/10, Daily Telegraph 2/10, The Guardian 2/10, The Times 2/10, Evening Standard 2/10, The Sun 1/10, The Express 2/10

The People Vote ...

  • IMDB summary. IMDb voters score it 6.0/10, Guardian voters 7.8
  • with their dollars: budget $35 million, gross $30 million on 2500+ screens


IMDb guideline: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence, about like three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, about like two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, about like two stars from the critics. Films under five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film, equivalent to about one and a half stars from the critics or 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. 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.

Based on this description, this film is an E. Technically competent, even beautiful, cinematography and set design, but so badly written and acted that it really doesn't have much appeal except as ultra high camp.

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