Taking A Bite Out of Vampire Films
LA TIMES film blogger Steve Zeitchick recently announced that the age of vampire movies is over. But everybody knows that vampires don’t age. Instead, they multiply. Vampires’ popularity goes beyond the well loved TWILIGHT films (which we'll soon add to our library for rent or sale) and television's TRUE BLOOD series. In fact, unique to movie monsters, vampires have taken a bite out of every popular genre, from westerns to science fiction to action to comedy, and even musicals. This week’s new offering, I KISSED A VAMPIRE, shows that far from fading, vampires are undead and kicking. And now they sing!
Originally a popular Webseries, pop musical I KISSED A VAMPIRE reveals the sharp bite of teenage angst. Vamped-out high school student Dylan is full of self-doubt; he struggles with how to navigate his new identity and deal with the changes his body is going through, and how to tell his girlfriend. That sounds like high school to me! However, if you don't think vampires should sing, then revisit THE LOST BOYS (or its two sequels), the original high school vampire movie. THE LOST BOYS focuses on 80s-appropriate hair gel instead of the new film's obsession with eyeliner, and original Lost Boy Corey Feldman wouldn't sing if his life depended on it. It’s surprising how well the high-school-vampire idea can support two such tonally different films.
That’s what makes vampires so seductive. No matter what critics say, the vampire continues to thrive -- whether it's the visceral sting of exchanging body fluids or the sucking as sexual metaphor or the irreversible slavery to bloodsucking that gets us, all these possibilities quicken the pulse of any vampire film. That's why vampires are genre-defying monsters. Vampires fight in action movies (BLADE, BLADE: TRINITY), gunsling in westerns (JOHN CARPENTER’S VAMPIRES), befriend kids (SCOOBY-DOO AND THE LEGEND OF THE VAMPIRE), attract top-notch directors and actors (BRAM STOKER'S DRACULA) and terrify adults (QUEEN OF THE DAMNED). They even do Mel Brooks comedy (DRACULA: DEAD AND LOVING IT)! It’s safe to say that no matter your taste, you can find a vampire movie you’d like to sink your teeth into.
We have dozens and dozens of vampire films -- which one(s) do you recommend?
Anne writes about films, especially sequels and remakes, at her blog, We Recycle Movies.