Count Yorga (Robert Quarry) holds a séance at his pad for a bunch of scoffing unbelievers but gets his revenge when he puts the bite on the unsuspecting Erica (Judy Lang). Her concerned boyfriend (Michael Murphy) gets a doctor to investigate and they learn that Yorga is actually a vampire (DUH!) and they set out to ram a stake through his heart.
Count Yorga, Vampire was a big hit back in 1970 although I can’t for the life of me tell why. (It was popular enough to spawn a sequel, The Return of Count Yorga, two years later.) The film doesn’t really add anything new to the vampire legend except for a tad more blood and suggested sexuality (including an implied lesbian scene) than what audiences of the day were used to. Also, the scenes of horror are few and far between and director Bob (Scream Blacula Scream) Kelljan paces the movie in a plodding manner. There were also far too many eye-rolling scenes where the doctor explained the rules of vampirism to some incredulous idiots who’d say shit like “But vampires don’t exist!”
The silver lining of the film is a strong performance by Quarry. He manages to be menacing and mischievous, even though the script doesn’t exactly give him a whole lot to work with. Despite the languid pacing, there is one perfectly awesome kitten munching scene that has to be seen to be believed. If Kelljan had whipped up a few more shocks like this baby, Count Yorga, Vampire could’ve been a classic.
AKA: The Loves of Count Iorga, Vampire.