Saturday, June 28, 2008

My Favorite Bad Movies: Billy the Kid Vs. Dracula

Well, it's been awhile since I have put in an entry in this series, and I have been watching some REAL stinkers of late, so I will kick back into the Favorite Bad Movies series with this schlocker from 1966.
It stars (and I use this term loosely) John Carradine,Chuck Courtney as William 'Billy the Kid' Bonney, and Melinda Plowman as Betty Bentley, love interest of Billy, and lust object of "Dracula".
First of all, this movie should have been called "Dracula is a Dirty Old Man", but unfortunately, that title is already taken. The movie begins with John Carradine's character sharing a stagecoach with a tubby whiskey salesman, and an old woman and her brother. The stagecoach is travelling at night (? Is that really supposed to be night?) because vampires don't hold up under the sun too good, natch. The old broad regales "Dracula" with details of her life and reasons for travel, ignoring a crucial horror movie rule: never tell a stranger wearing a top hat and cape and a big clown-like bow tie too much about where you are headed to, who you are going to see, and why.
She prattles on about her niece, who lives on the "Double Bar B" ranch, so named for old talky broad's husband, since passed away. She went up to Boston to fetch her Brother, who was going to help old talky broad on the ranch, now that talky old broad's husband is dead. She informs "Dracula" that her daughter "Betty" has never met her Uncle, whose name we learn is James Underhill.
Still with me?
Still awake?
It's been like 10 minutes of the movie so far.
Wake me up when the killing starts.
At this point, old talky broad's brother, who seemed to be trying to sleep through his sister's tedious conversation, wakes up long enough to say "Easy - remember, your heart..."
Which I guess means that she can't even talk without risking a heart attack, which was a first for me to hear. She tells "Dracula" that her daughter is "18 and beautiful", upon which his eyes look like they are going to come out of his sockets. She whips out a photo and asks if "Dracula" would like to see it.
The eyes get even bigger if that is at all possible, and he says one of my favorite lines, "18 and beautiful? Yes, I'd like to see it!"
Ok, let this be a warning to you, mothers everywhere. When an old man ogles your daughter's picture and then repeats "18 and beautiful", as his eyes look like they might be on the verge of popping out, you might want to call the cops ASAP. Just saying.
Speaking of the old coot, why I keep saying "Dracula" in quotations is this: they never ever really say that he IS Dracula. He never says that. The name "Dracula" is never even uttered once in the film. So why the title is as it stands is beyond me, and probably most of the other people who saw the film. Which is probably about 45 people, including me.
"Billy the Kid" actually is supposed to be the notorious William H. Bonney, here played by Chuck Courtney, who I have to admit is sort of dreamy in a 60's way. Nice blue eyes. William is "reformed" now, and is trying to live a clean life with his girl, Melinda Plowman as Betty Bentley (daughter of talky old broad). Betty Bentley muses that after she and Billy are married they will be Betty Bonney and Billy Bonney.
No, this is actually a scene. I'm not kidding.
Well...what drags on from here is predictable and a snoozery. But do I recommend it? Absolutely! It is perfect for a lazy Saturday afternoon fraught with laughs,or perhaps if you are in a deep coma and not expected to awaken any time soon. It is full of bad rubber bat effects, bulging old man eyes, Red flashlights pointed at faces "special effects", and one of my favorite death of a vampire scenes ever captured on film.
Watch it below...

Oh yes...bullets won't stop him...but throw a gun in his face and he's down for the count.
This made the movie totally worth sitting through. I laughed until I cried, actually.
So check out Billy the Kid Vs. Dracula if you are a masochist for this stuff like I am.
Or if you are in a coma.
You will definitely be entertained for a second or two.

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