Your enjoyment of “Queen of the Damned” may hinge on your reaction to the following: Hong Kong -style martial arts vampire fight during a goth-metal concert. Are you drooling? Did you think “The Brotherhood of the Wolf” was OK but a wee bit too hoity-toity for your taste? “Queen of the Damned” will not tax your reserves. It is never clear whether the film desires to be a dark, moody, atmospheric vampire movie in the original “Dracula” standard, a heavy-metal style “cool” vampire chic homage to “Dracula 2000” or an ironic bloodsucker comedy following in the hilarious footsteps of “Dracula, Dead and Loving It.”
Director Michael Rymer (“In Too Deep”) crams two Anne Rice novels (one that gives the movie its title, the other “The Vampire Lestat”) into one film, sacrificing nothing except coherence and character development. What saves it from being a complete waste of time is the dirty-decadent joy that turns this bloated B movie into a fun bloated B movie. The blood is sharply red over the washed out whites, grays and blacks that permeate the rest of the film. Vampires don’t simply bite, they slurp. The film wallows in its own depravity, and that is its finest asset.
Stuart Townsend (“Wonderland”) is Lestat, Rice’s titular