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Film / I Bought a Vampire Motorcycle

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I Bought A Vampire Motorcycle is a British comedy-horror B-Movie from 1990, notable for its unexpectedly good effects, humour, and highly recognisable cast.

Somewhere in The West Midlands, a gang of devil-worshipping outlaw bikers are attacked and massacred in the middle of a ritual by a rival, secular, chapter, led by the psychopathic Roach (Andrew Powell). The demon summoned during the ritual takes advantage of the interruption to possess the dead Satanist leader's classic Norton Commando motorbike.

Some time later, the bike is purchased by amiable motorbike courier Noddy (Neil Morrissey), who is unaware that his purchase is out for revenge on the killers of its summoner, and the blood of everyone who crosses its path. Noddy, his girlfriend Kim (Amanda Noar), a camp vicar (Anthony Daniels), and an increasingly bemused police detective (Michael Elphick) find themselves the only people who can end the bike's reign of terror.

This film provides examples of:

  • All Bikers are Hells Angels: Played straight with the devil-worshippers at the beginning and with Roach's gang, but the other characters are non-outlaw bikers.
  • Asshole Victim: The bike's main target, Roach, is also a casual murderer for kicks.
  • Attack of the Killer Whatever: A motorbike
  • Badass Biker: Roach and the priest. Averted with Noddy, who isn't badass at all.
  • Bar Brawl: Set off when Kim responds to sexual harassment by one of Roach's gang by questioning his penis size.
  • Church of Saint Genericus: It is unclear whether the priest is Catholic or High Church Anglican.
  • Cool Bike: A Norton Commando is a genuinely rare and famous British motorbike. Shortly after the release of the film, the director was reportedly cornered by a bunch of bikers and interrogated to make sure that they hadn't actually destroyed one while making the film.
  • Crucified Hero Shot: The priest gets crucified on the garage wall by telekinetic forces during the attempted exorcism.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: The bike hunts down and murders Buzzer for stealing its fuel tank cap.
  • Driving Up a Wall: When being chased by the police, the bike drives straight up a vertical wall and down the other side.
  • The End... Or Is It?: At the very end of the film, the bike's old fuel tank, which Noddy replaced at the beginning and forgot about, sucks down a blood-smeared rag.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: A vampire motorcycle gets purchased.
  • Fingore: The priest doesn't believe Noddy's claims that the bike is possessed until it chops some of his fingers off with its brake lever.
  • Hollywood Exorcism: The attempted exorcism of the bike involves murderous poltergeist phenomena, levitation, and heavenly light.
  • Hollywood Satanism: The opening demon-summoning ritual is this.
  • Holy Burns Evil: The bike's first attack on Kim is thwarted by the cross around her neck.
  • Hope Spot: After the priest is powered-up by godly power, and it falsely appears that the bike has been exorcised. Then again when Noddy knocks the bike into the river.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: When the priest is convinced that the bike actually is possessed, he drops his camp mannerisms and goes back to the church to get tooled up. He also reveals himself to be a biker.
  • Made of Plasticine: All over the place, but especially when the bike kills the tea lady at the hospital. It is not, in fact, possible to cleanly bisect somebody by crushing them between a wall and a tea trolley.
  • McNinja: Among the priest's set of demon-slaying weapons are a bunch of shuriken.
  • No Name Given: The priest is never named.
  • Old-Fashioned Copper: Inspector Cleaver is one.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: This one is a demon-possessed inanimate object.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: The bike's headlight glows red when it is under demonic control.
  • Rule of Cool: How can an inanimate object get possessed by a demon and control itself? Guess why.
  • Sentient Vehicle: Because it's possessed by a demon.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Roach's *Twang* Hello is a Shout Out to a long-running series of British TV adverts for Strongbow cider.
    • Noddy is probably named after Slade lead singer Noddy Holder.
    • The scene where Noddy has nightmares about his dead friend Buzzer is a parody of a similar scene in An American Werewolf in London.
  • Spikes of Villainy: The bike grows them in its ultimate One-Winged Angel form.
  • Talking Poo: Noddy's nightmare has a talking poo with Buzzer's face that ends up attacking him.
  • *Twang* Hello: Roach announces his arrival at the pub by firing a crossbow bolt into the top of the bar.
  • The Vicar: Subverted. The priest initially appears to be a stereotypical ineffectual and slightly camp British vicar, but does a convincing Let's Get Dangerous! when convinced of how serious the situation is.
  • Weakened by the Light: The bike is finally destroyed by ultraviolet light from gymnasium tanning beds.
  • The West Midlands: The locations and several characters' accents reveal the West Midlands as the setting.
  • You Have to Believe Me!: The priest is initially highly skeptical of Noddy's terrified claims that his motorbike is supernaturally evil and going around killing people, until he gets convinced.