Owen Gleiberman
November 03, 1995 AT 05:00 AM EST

Vampire in Brooklyn

Current Status
In Season
100 minutes
Angela Bassett, Wes Craven, Eddie Murphy
Wes Craven
Eddie Murphy
Eddie Murphy
Comedy, Horror

We gave it a D

As a bloodsucker who journeys to New York to find his true love in Vampire in Brooklyn (Paramount, R), Eddie Murphy is hidden under long, greasy tresses and a manicured goatee. He looks like a cross between Nick Ashford and Barry White, and he speaks in a vague West Indian accent that turns his every ”suave” utterance into a cheesy love-man cliche. Murphy may think he’s shifting gears by playing this Blaculoid prince. What he’s really doing is cuing us to see how desperate he is for an image overhaul. Directed by Wes Craven, who hasn’t made a good movie since 1988’s The Serpent and the Rainbow, Vampire in Brooklyn is a horror comedy that mixes lame blood-pellet effects with lame gags (Murphy, suavely: ”I’m more of a night person myself!”), and it clunks along on a series of interchangeably deserted streets that manage to look dank and overlit at the same time. The movie does flicker briefly to life when Murphy’s vampire, disguised as an Al Sharpton-type preacher, delivers a hot-jive sermon declaring that ”evil is good.” For a moment or two, you get a taste of the comic’s old effrontery. But then Vampire in Brooklyn snaps back to its glum inertia. Its one lingering image is that of Eddie Murphy trying, and failing, to rise from the dead. D

You May Like