Vampires that don’t Suck

Posted by ron On May - 17 - 2011

Despite a lackluster 14M opening, the disappointing Christ-Fu film known as Priest had me thinking about the recent demise of Vampire genre. It’s in worse shape than the Knicks under Isiah Thomas. Completely unwatchable. Bad scripts from horrible literature seems to be the mainstay. Hence, I felt it was my duty to throw you some recent material that should get you back into why Vampires are cool:

Relying more on suggestion and not beating you over the head, Let the Right One In let the horror creep into your soul slowly yet surely.

The Kids are alright
Let the Right One In shatters two preconceived opinions about vampire films. One, vampire films with kids can’t be taken seriously. Two, vampire films without excessive neck biting can’t work. It was one of the rare cases where the film does the novel justice. See it. Read it. Love it.

Through Pearl, we see the development of America through the eyes of the immortal undead and how it affects her marriage with a mortal and her hated archnemesis, Skinner


Sympathy for the Devil
Unless you’ve been living on another planet, writer Scott Snyder has taken the comic book world by storm in American Vampire. A tale of two different vampires who become undead at two very different times in the America. The reader gains a more intimate story about the changes these characters undergo not only within but also with the relationships they build. The sweeping changes as the characters around the vampires grow older has an interesting subtext. The story is not linear as we begin with the 1920s when Pearl is turned by her maker Skinner but then we see his story when the lawless old West was around. As we move forward in time to World War II, we also learn a little more about the past. Essentially, American Vampire is really about how they have played a significant hand at shaping America without anyone noticing but in a more intelligent, patient, thorough story-telling fashion that is mature and takes the subject matter seriously.

Thirst is a Korean vampire film that wrestles with losing your humanity.


If you saw Old Boy, chances are you familiar with Chan-wook Park’s strong work that challenges your sensibilities and constitution as human beings are pushed to disturbing brink of insanity. Thirst is a brilliant love story involving a priest who gives up his life to be a part of a study that could cure some strain of leprosy. He dies but is reborn with unique abilities not of ordinary human beings. Now, in a new life he’s challenged with trying to retain his humanity as his powers continually torture and tempt him to do things for his betterment.

A desperate man searches to save the woman he loves in a world he doesn't understand


New Blood
Written by Daredevil Noir’s Daniel Freedman, Undying Love is the story about a soldier of fortune who falls in love with a woman who is a vampire but the twist is, this comic book is faithful to the Eastern interpretation of Vampires. They’re not really blood suckers but rather soul suckers. Refreshing to see that not all vampires are not combat machines or stronger than 10 men.

Artist/Filmmaker Tomm Coker is no stranger to vampires. His limited palette but strong graphic visuals also breathed life into DC Vertigo title, Blood & Water about a man dying of a terminal disease presented with a solution with a price.

 

Unlike the film, there were no real protagonists in the Manga Priest. Just a cursed man on a suicide mission

 

The Confession

What made the manga Priest such a guilty pleasure to read was the Japanese take on Western culture. Hyung Min-Woo was obviously influenced by The Man with No Name, supernatural, exorcism, and science fiction as this tells the story of Ivan Isaacs who plots revenge for the slaughter of his family by joining an order designed to bring down the 12 fallen angels and Lucifer himself in the old West. Of course, such a multi-faceted book has flashbacks to the order’s origins from the Middle Ages to present day. While the plot falls victim to the “run the gauntlet” video game linear progression, it’s the unique look and intense imagery that is unmistakable and distinct. It’s too bad the movie didn’t utilize any of the same dynamics.

 

 

 

 

Hope this whets your whistle for vampires again. Till next time,

Where's my straw goddam it?

Ron

 

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Thoughts on Cinema is dedicated to film reviews. An uncompromising opinion on the intellectual, artistic, and entertainment value to the consumer. With rising ticket prices, we dedicate ourselves to present to you content regarding what you should or should not be viewing. -Ronald H. Pollock Founder and Editor in Chief

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