From Dusk Till Dawn 2: Texas Blood Money (1999)


Let’s face it, someone took a shitty movie about vampire bank robbers and turned it in to a sequel to “From Dusk Till Dawn.” Except it’s nowhere near being a sequel. Even with an appearance from Danny Trejo as the vampire bartender Razor Eddie from the first film, this is a shitty vampire movie someone decided to make in to a sequel. It’s a goofy, campy, and ridiculous vampire movie filled with horrible performances, and a ridiculous premise that does nothing to reconcile itself with the first film. There’s not even a mention of Seth Gecko for crying out loud. Shit, at least re-cast Juliette Lewis’ role as Kate Fuller and follow her along on another vampire adventure, at least.

“Texas Blood Money” is a sequel in name only that follows a group of numbskull bank robbers, all of whom gradually become vampires before they decide to rob a local bank. Oddly enough the robbery is set during an eclipse, so they’re going to be able to rob the bank and not be killed by police since vampires are invulnerable to bullets. What do vampires need with money, one only knows. Perhaps they’ll open up a strip club? After an obligatory fake out opening with Bruce Campbell that promises a wicked vampire gore fest, “Texas Blood Money” lets audiences down by being a horror comedy that’s not at all scary or funny. It also tends to turn its vampires in to comic props, wherein the first film transformed the vampires in to alluring but utterly vicious monsters.

When one of the bank robbers Luther on the way to a rendezvous with his comrades, stops off at a local bar, he’s attacked and killed by Razor Eddie and another vampire, becoming one of the fanged undead himself. From there, he meets up with his friends and begins turning them in to vampires one by one. This series of events has potential to be very creepy, but becomes absolutely ludicrous. There’s one scene where character Jesus (Raymond Cruz) has sex with a prostitute who is ravaged by a vampire in the bathroom. When Jesus manages to escape the wrath of his friend Luther, now a vampire, and hides in the bathroom. His now vampirized booty call emerges from the tub of blood a vampire as Jesus stands by the door oblivious to her impending attack.

It’s a truly spine tingling moment, otherwise hobbled by bad editing, bad writing, and even worse pay off. The movie continues on a gradual vampiric flip on the crew, and they’re always uncovered in odd ways. In one moment a vampire flinches at a bank wheel that resembles a cross; it’s a moment I could never be sure was opting for comedy or attempting to add a twist to the vampire lore. Either way, it’s moronic. Robert Patrick continues his descent back in to the B movie territory as the hero of the picture who tries to outwit and outlast his vampiric buddies, while the writers ride off the rails and lose sight of the actual premise by the final half, giving way to senseless action and badly directed gore. “Texas Blood Money” is a rotten pseudo-follow up to the dynamic first film, and it’s a shame this is considered canon with the Rodriguez film when it almost bastardizes the first film’s concept.