Friday, May 25, 2018

Shake Rattle & Roll V – review

Director: Jose Javier Reyes

Release date: 1994

Contains spoilers

Normally I begin a Shake, Rattle & Roll review by explaining that they are a long-running horror anthology series from the Philippines. However, unusually, this particular iteration of the series is actually a portmanteau film, with a connective wraparound.

As normal, however, it does feature three segments, those being Maligno, a story about the mythical Engkanto, Anino, a story about the ghost of a murderer, and the story that interests us, Impakto.

the kids
Now, I have had a good search for information about the impakto online and it has little out there. One site suggested it was an evil spirit and another suggested it was a variant of the tiyanak. However in terms of this film it is pretty much just a Western style vampire (and is named as a vampire in the film’s subtitles). It starts with a driver, Denico (Don Pepot, Ang Darling, Kong Aswang), pulling into a car park. He seems nervous as he meets up with two men (Archi Adamos, Aswang, & Romy Romulo). We also see a man, Andres (Chuck Perez), and his girlfriend (Michelle Ortega) drive off.

Andres and gal
Denico is the family driver and has taken the siblings Lizbeth (Manilyn Reynes) and the younger Charlie (Tom Taus) out. She was on a date and her little brother was the “chaperone”. The date clearly hasn’t gone well, so she pages Denico; all-the-while the siblings are bickering. Denico has arranged for the two men to kidnap the siblings. There is a pointless moment when they can’t follow as they’re out of gas (presumably a comedy moment, but generally unfunny) and Denico fakes a car problem and waits for them to arrive. They kidnap the kids, take a short cut (Denico having revealed his part in the plot to the siblings) and then lose control of the car. This ends up with them going to an abandoned hotel as a new hideout.

maw of fangs
Meanwhile Andres has also arrived at the hotel and takes his girlfriend in. He stands behind her, taking an interest in her neck and then sprouts fangs. Fangs become a whole maw of teeth (reminiscent, in honesty, of Fright Night) and later we see he ripped a hole in her throat. Lizbeth and Charlie manage to get away from the kidnappers and soon they are being hunted by the criminals and by Andres, whilst still bickering. The film throws in some minor slapstick, which involves prospective victims failing to spot the impakto when he is up close and ready to take a bite.

So, I mentioned that he is a vampire and we get some standard vampire bits – such as sleeping in a coffin, Lizbeth holding a cross up to him (it has no effect, he is a Catholic it appears, but it is during this scene that she calls him a vampire and expects the crucifix will kill him) and him being staked – the staking seems to lead to him setting on fire. His victims do not appear to turn (and why there is a dead old woman tied inside a bathroom was beyond me). Andres proves to be incredibly physically strong, able to spring into a standing leap of impressive height. There is also a suggestion that he can float. He does become bloodier and bloodier but that is an aesthetic thing only, I think.

Chuck Perez as Andres
The comedy aspects of this one probably let it down more than anything. The logic of the story fails to hold up to scrutiny (why would Denico let the kids know he was in on their kidnapping, what level of coincidence led them to end up in the same abandoned hotel that Andres uses as his base having seen him earlier that day?) As always, with portmanteau films I am scoring the vampire segment only and this one probably sits comfortably at 4 out of 10.

The imdb page is here.

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