Musings in the Dark: Horror 103: Iconography--Rita Veder


Horror 103: Iconography--Rita Veder

Angela Bassett plays Rita Veder, a NYC detective haunted by memories and visions of her insane mother and murder.  She falls under the spell of Maximilian, a seductive vampire played by the incomparable Eddie Murphy.  Rita and her partner Justice investigate the murders caused by Maximilian, but she soon finds herself drawn to him.  Rita is a dhampir; the daughter of a vampire father and a human mother.  She is unaware of her heritage.

We learn that Rita’s father was murdered by vampire hunters and that was what drove her mother (a paranormal researcher) insane.  Prior to his death, Rita’s father sent Maximilian to find her and that is why he is in New York. Max has to claim her before the next full moon or he will die. Maximilian bites Rita and tries to convince her to embrace her vampire heritage and be with him.  But Rita doesn’t want any part of that lifestyle (to my utter chagrin) and kills Max.

I love this movie simply because it gave my horror heart something I’d never really seen before: a Black vampire.  I don’t have any memories of watching Blacula, so Eddie Murphy’s turn as Maximilian really did something to me. This was three years before Blade dropped.  And having The Goddess Angela Bassett as his romantic lead made me so happy.  They had great chemistry and I really, really, really wanted Rita to embrace her whole self and become Maximilian’s queen.  I could have watched—and still can—a whole series with them traveling the world doing evil vamp shit.


  1. This was one of my faves as a kid.

  2. Why am I in no way surprised that you did not like her decision to not fully embrace being a vampire? LOL!!!

    1. You know me. I be wanting my girls to walk on that wild side...One day, I'll get my wish.


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