Newest Reviews
Morfalous, Les
Everything Went Fine
Lux AEterna
Rum Runners
Fairy and the Devil, The
Mad God
Outside the Law
I Remember Mama
Superman Unbound
Lawrence of Belgravia
House Across the Lake, The
Wonder Park
Hornsby e Rodriguez
Operation Mincemeat
5 Kung Fu Daredevil Heroes
Peau Douce, La
Double Indemnity
Na Cha and the Seven Devils
Deep Murder
Superman vs. the Elite
Adam Project, The
Osamu Tezuka's Last Mystery of the 20th Century
Horse, La
Train Robbers, The
Let Sleeping Cops Lie
Funeral, The
Burning Sea, The
Godzilla Singular Point
Ace of Aces
Innocents, The
Beast and the Magic Sword, The
Last Hard Men, The
Found Footage Phenomenon, The
Night Trap
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
  Hello Dracula 2 The Littlest Vampire Slayer
Year: 1988
Director: Wong Chi-Ching
Stars: Liu Chih-Yu, Gam Tiu, Boon Saam, Lam Gwong-Wing, Wong Chung-Yue, Hong Ching-Yuan, On On, Liu Chi-Han, Chan Tai-Sheng, Huang Guo-Shu, Chu Ming-Da
Genre: Horror, Comedy, Martial Arts, Weirdo, FantasyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Grandpa King (Gam Tiu), his ghost-busting little granddaughter Ten-Ten (Liu Chih-Yu) and four young kung fu kids, including sensitive fat boy Shih Kua Pih (Liu Chi-Han), transport the corpse of Ten-Ten's former master through a haunted forest. As they ride Grandpa regales them with the story of a father and son who died tragically but were reborn as 'Jiangshi' or hopping vampires. Wouldn't you know it, the gang happen across a hapless Taoist sorcerer grappling with his hitherto docile now out-of-control quartet of hopping vampires. Sure enough the cause of this chaos is cute little child vampire Little Konsi (Hong Ching-Yuan) whose cries summon his formidable vampire dad (Wong Chung-Yue). Ten-Ten and her boys subdue the spook but on arriving in town are arrested for corpse smuggling by the bumbling Police Chief (Boon Saam). As a result there is a vampire on the loose.

The Hello Dracula films were Taiwan's more child-oriented variation on Mr. Vampire (1985), the groundbreaking Hong Kong 'hopping vampire' film that spawned a string of sequels and imitators. Though little known in the West, to the point where no source can agree whether this 1988 film was the first or second in the series, the franchise remains immensely popular in Taiwan. Its success established adorable child star Liu Chih-Yu, sometimes billed as Shadow Liu Chih-Yu, as a top box-office draw in her native land. She not only headlined all but one of the six sequels but also such colourful children's fantasies as Child of Peach (1987) and Twelve Animals (1990). It is easy to see why the Taiwanese audience were so taken with Liu Chiu-Yu. She is an engaging presence and brings welcome charm and energy to frequently ridiculous scenes. Notably when Ten-Ten leads the vampires in a strange duck quacking song-and-dance routine that, alongside the scene where little vampires play baseball (did the makers of Twilight (2008) see this movie?), earned Hello Dracula no small amount of infamy among cult film fans.

Despite sporting a mix of Taoist lore and slapstick action quite similar to Mr. Vampire the humour is far more puerile and the drama more sentimental reflecting the tone of much Taiwanese children's fare. If the scatological laughs, including the inevitable accidental piss-drinking gag, remain an acquired taste (pun intended!) the film's darker, more horrific moments are surprisingly suspenseful. A weird, slightly queasy romantic subplot concerns portly stooge Shih Kua Pih's frustrated ongoing attempts to romance Ten-Ten. She is having none of it (quite right too, she's barely ten years old!) and repeatedly rebuffs him whereupon he is soundly mocked by his fellow kung fu kids. Upholding the faintly sadistic streak prevalent throughout Taiwanese children's cinema, Hello Dracula 2 plays Kua Pih's humiliation for tragicomic pathos and features a remarkably high body-count. And I am not just talking about the undead. There are some shocking moments of violence culminating in a downbeat denouement that is especially jarring for a children's film. Yet it is these whiplash mood shifts and eccentric juxtaposition of sentimental and apocalyptic elements that give the film its unique flavour. Though not as well crafted as Mr. Vampire, Hello Dracula 2 is just as appealingly odd.

The plot also includes an interesting if mildly xenophobic twist. A Catholic priest and nun arrive in town along with an unscrupulous European entrepreneur named Mr. Robert. They want to buy the vampire corpse for the purpose research but their strange foreign garb freaks everybody out. In a metaphor for western colonial interference, Mr. Robert sees the little vampires playing baseball and makes up his mind to steal him for a sideshow attraction, thus enraging Daddy Vampire and causing chaos. On the one hand it is that old staple: clueless westerners meddle in things they do not understand. Yet the Catholic priest is portrayed sympathetically as a kindly man who respects Chinese customs. He also busts out some inexplicable kung fu moves to take down the undead leading one to wonder if Peter Jackson ever saw Hello Dracula 2 before including his own kung fu kicking priest in Braindead (1992)? Hello Dracula 2 also includes a hint of nunsploitation. The saintly sister disrobes for a bath unaware a reanimated corpse is copying her every move. Again not the sort of thing one expects to see in a children's film. Only in Taiwan. Or Hong Kong. Sometimes Japan. Okay, fine, only in Asia.

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam


This review has been viewed 2708 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside

Recent Visitors
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Mary Sibley
  Desbris M
  Sheila Reeves
Paul Smith


Last Updated: