The Loves of Count Iorga: Vampire (1970)

THE LOVES OF COUNT IORGA: VAMPIRE (1970)
aka Count Yorga, Vampire
Article 2917 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 5-3-2009
Posting Date: 8-8-2009
Directed by Bob Kelljan
Featuring Robert Quarry, Roger Perry, Michael Murphy
Country: USA

When a woman who took part in a seance begins to show symptoms of vampire attack, suspicion falls on a Count from Yugoslavia who lives in a spooky old castle and is never seen during the daytime.

The trivia section for this movie on IMDB has two entries that contradict each other. One claims that the movie was originally intended to be a soft-core porno movie called THE LOVES OF COUNT IORGA, VAMPIRE that turned out better than expected and was then changed to a straight horror movie. The other claims that it was never intended as a porno movie and was called COUNT YORGA, VAMPIRE from the outset. All I know is this; my copy of the movie has the title THE LOVES OF COUNT IORGA, VAMPIRE, and there are definite moments here that look like the movie could well have been intended for porn. For example, there’s a moment during the seance where a man grabs his girlfriend’s breast, there’s the introduction of a sexy nurse who later turns up in bed with the doctor, and, most strikingly, there’s a moment which looks like the beginning of a lesbian love scene being watched by Count Iorga (or Yorga). Though none of these scenes ever develop into anything explicit, they certainly look like they were intended for such a purpose at one time. At any rate, if the first story is true, than we can thank an excellent performance by Robert Quarry for the movie making the switch to straight horror.

According to one of my sources, this movie was shot for $64,000. If so, then my hat is off to Bob Kelljan, who makes it look a lot more expensive than it was. The script itself is uneven and a little too conventional to redeem the movie completely, but Quarry’s performance lifts it tremendously; he presents us with a unique vampire, one who looks like he could easily pass as an ordinary human being, thus making him more deadly. The rest of the cast is not as inspired, but they manage to hold their own; there are no actors embarrassing themselves here. All in all, it’s not bad, especially for its extreme low budget.

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