Wicked Wednesday: I Bought a Vampire Motorcycle (1990)

I Bought a Vampire Motorcycle is a weird movie. It has a weird title, for one, and stars Bob the Builder. It has the unbelievable Hells Angels-style Birmingham biker gang, and the world’s most enthusiastic Catholic priest.

Another weird thing about this week, was realising that I live in a country know where people can actually name the actor who voiced ol’ Bob. So there’s also that.

This little gem, though, is about as bonkers as you’d expect it to be. A satanic cult are murdered by a biker gang in the middle of a ritual. A few bodies of the dead rise again, one of them pouring their blood into one of the nearby bikes. This magic brings the bike to life.

Sometime later, a young idiot named “Noddy” (which I can only assume is the name on his baptismal name) buys the bike at the (unassumingly) extortionate price of £1,100. When he takes it home to show off to his friend and girlfriend, they quickly point out all of the bike’s flaws like the damage done by a crossbow.

Noddy’s friend Buzzer (also his Christian name, just guessing) plays a ‘joke’ on Noddy by stealing the cap to the gas tank. But Noddy later finds it in the bike shed that following morning. He and his girlfriend, Kim, get a call at their offices that Buzzer had been killed in some sort of accident.

Noddy goes to Buzzer’s flat where he was killed. He speaks to the inspector and finds that there are tyre tracks everywhere, and a rather motorcycle-shaped hole in Buzzer’s front door.

Later the motorcycle gets to stretch its wheels when Noddy takes it out for a ride. The bike takes over and nearly crashes into a biker gang (the cult killer one), making Noddy the gang’s biggest target. They later harass Noddy and Kim in a pub in a scene that literally looks like a Tenpole Tudor music video.

After escaping the gang, the young couple go to grab Chinese. The bike becomes upset when Kim wants garlic prawns and drives off with only her on the back. The bike attacks her, leaving her in the hospital. The bike goes on a bit of a bender, killing off most of the gang and filling its tank with blood.

When Noddy notices the bloody bike, he decides that the bike is possessed and needs help from god. He seeks help from a priest, and together they take on the bike. It’s already a wacky film, but it goes full-on British at this point. It falls victim to a repetitive ending, a bit, losing the film a little steam. But it is still pretty amusing nevertheless.

With I Bought a Vampire Motorcycle, you pretty much get what you’re asking for. It’s zany, stupid, and very, very British. It’s like Cornetto Trilogy version of Death Bed: The Bed that Eats but less psychedelic and with more puns.

There are certainly weak points here, like the never-ending ending. The biggest issue is probably the writing of the characters – which is at least passable because the actors are rather likable. They aren’t very well fleshed out in general and we sort of take for granted that they’re just there. But I want to know: Are they in a biker gang too? Do they have real jobs? What’s this office they keep arriving at and not doing any work in? Do they really think ponytails are a good idea? I don’t know. It could have been explained. Maybe I just didn’t understand the accents.

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