1970/Director: MichioYamamoto/Writers: Hiroshi Nagano, Ei Ogawa
Cast: Jun Hamamura, Yukiko Kobayashi, Kayo Matsuo, Yôko Minakaze, Atsuo Nakamura
Also Known As: Chi wo sû ningyô: Yûrei yashiki no kyôfu/Bloodsucking Doll/Chi o suu ningyô/Fear of the Ghost House: Bloodsucking Doll/I klironomia tou vrykolaka/The Ghost Mansion's Horror: A Bloodsucking Doll/The Legacy of Dracula/The Night of the Vampire/The Vampire Doll
I recently got in this batch of films called The Bloodthirsty Trilogy, all from TOHO pictures and directed by Michio Yamamoto and co-written by Ei Ogawa (who wanted his professional name to sound like Edgar, as in Edgar Allen Poe). I don’t gather that the films were actually intended as a trilogy and that was most likely a packaging gimmick, but the films do have some similarity in terms of themes and production that link them together more in terms of appearance and atmosphere than actual storyline. I am using the title Vampire Doll for the review here though the title of the film appears as Bloodsucking Doll on this, the British release called Legacy of Dracula, or The Bloodthirsty Trilogy. The other films include Lake of Dracula and Evil of Dracula, and those films too have a long list of confusing AKAs. But Vampire Doll is the first of the three films in terms of chronology and, like the other films in the series, what makes it stand out as a movie is the apparent influence on the film’s look and story by the Gothic films of the west, and in particular the successful vampire movies produced by Hammer studios during the late 50’s and through out the 60’s. That is not to say that Vampire Doll and the next two films are remakes or redoing of western vampire films without reference to Japanese horror lore. There is in fact a successful blending of Asian and western horror themes here that, along with the Terence Fisheresque sets, make the Bloodthirsty Trilogy an enduring little collection of movies.
TRAILER FOR VAMPIRE DOLL