Parts “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and parts “John Carpenter’s Vampires”, the French film “Bloody Mallory” is all goofball. It would be a big mistake to take anything that transpires within the film seriously, mostly because the filmmakers themselves aren’t.
“Mallory” stars Olivia Bonamy as the titular character, a demon slayer whose innocence was taken when, on the night of her fairytale wedding, her husband turned out to be a demon, forcing her to chop him to pieces with an axe. Now the veteran leader of a small team of demon slaying commandos that includes the transsexual Vena Cava (Jeffery Ribier) and the teen mute telepath Talking Tina (Thylda Bares), Mallory spends her time slaying creatures of the night and not taking names. When the Pope is captured by a group of demons for nefarious purposes that involve destroying humanity and bringing darkness on the Earth or some such nonsense, Mallory’s team is called into action.
Armed with an abdomen to die for and fiery red highlights in her hair, actress Olivia Bonamy manages to amaze as she squeezes into a variety of tight leather outfits. The film boasts the incredibly indiscreet tagline of (and forgive the language), “F–k Evil”, which Mallory also has written on her gloves. Oh, and she drives around in a pink hearse. These few things should tell you what “Bloody Mallory” is going for, which is a twisted and warped version of the TV show “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”, complete with bad prosthetics, world-domination-by-demon scenarios, and poorly choreographed action sequences.
To call “Bloody Mallory” bad would not be correct. It’s mostly funny in its cheesiness, even though the second half, when the Main Bad Guy tells our heroine his Evil Plan, seems to go on forever — tediously so. The film’s conclusion, and its climactic good-versus-evil battle are also very underwhelming, and are probably the poorest executed segments of the entire movie. Besides that, the ending is also not very exciting, especially when all it takes is Mallory eating a 10,000-year-old prophecy and punching out the Main Bad Guy’s lights with one swing. You call this an ending?
Despite its many B-movie moments, such as exploding rodents and cheap special effects, “Bloody Mallory” has a couple of surprisingly very endearing scenes. The whole relationship between Mallory and her dead demon husband, who returns every now and then to aid her, is quite sympathetic and well done. Going by some mystical and completely silly set of laws, it seems that by marrying Mallory the demon husband has effectively indoctrinated her into the demon life. Besides this, the husband’s demon blood now flows through Mallory, and constantly threatens to overtake her.
Besides the fact that director Julien Magnat is coming from the school of filmmaking that states that a camera that’s constantly going lopsided is groovy, he handles many of the action scenes badly. The choreography, as previously mentioned, is not up to par, even for a B-movie. The screenplay is also redundant in its silliness, even though I did like Mallory’s interactions with her teammates and later, with Andria Collado as a priest turned demon fighter and possible love interest.
Fortunately Magnat seems to understand that there was a reason he put lead Olivia Bonamy on his movie poster, and as a result Bonamy is always in the foreground, making the knees of men and boys everywhere weak with her incredible abs and alluring smile. The woman is gloriously fit and makes Buffy look like a fat, overweight cheerleader who has eaten one too many burritos. Hallelujah for gym rats.
Bonamy handles most of her action scenes just well enough, but the film’s most inspired moments has to belong to Thylda Bares’ Talking Tina, a little girl with telepathic powers who can literally jump between bodies. For much of the movie, Tina’s body is indisposed, leaving her mind to jump between different bodies, including a fat, balding goon, in order to continue aiding her comrades. Jeffrey Ribier’s Vena Cava really has little to do except run around in high heels looking, well, weird. The film tells us he’s an explosives expert, but I never saw him do anything remotely close to handling explosives other than shoot an explosive-tipped bullet out of his lipstick.
Some people may take offense to the movie’s portrayal of the Pope. Being a lapsed Buddhist myself, I actually find the blind devotion to an old man who claims to be the middleman for God to be just a little silly. The Pope in “Bloody Mallory” is a bumbling idiot, prone to condemnations even while he’s being rescued by the same people he’s condemning. He definitely doesn’t look good, that’s for sure.
“Bloody Mallory” is mostly good for a laugh, or at the very least, a chuckle. It doesn’t do all of the things it set out to do very well, but does succeed in a couple of spots where I hadn’t expected it to. And let’s face it, there are worst things out there than having to watch Olivia Bonamy run around for 90 minutes.
Julien Magnat (director) / Julien Magnat, St’phane Kazandjian (screenplay)
CAST: Olivia Bonamy …. Mallory
Adria Collado …. Pere Carras
Jeffrey Ribier …. Vena Cava
Laurent Spielvogel …. Le pape
Valentina Vargas …. Lady Valentine
Julien Boisselier …. Le mari
Thylda Bares …. Talking Tina