PLOT SUMMARY: 95% of people are vampires, and the remaining 5% of humans are no longer enough to feed everybody. Will society collapse?
This is a new angle for vampire movies — what happens when an entire planet’s population is almost all vampire, and human blood starts to run out? A definite metaphor for environmental issues, such as peak oil, and not over-using our planet’s finite resources.
PEOPLE: Main character: Ethan Hawke (Lord Of War, Training Day, Reality Bites, Dead Poets Society, Gattaca). Bad guy: Sam Neill (Event Horizon, In The Mouth Of Madness, Jurassic Park). For some reason, I thought he Ray Wise of Twin Peaks fame.
Willem Dafoe was, very surprisingly, the weak actor of the movie. He had all the cheesy lines, like “That’s about as safe as barebackin’ a five dollar whore.”
QUIRKS: Definitely a more story-driven vampire movie than your average one, though still a lot of action. Not really a horror, or scary — they didn’t really go for the make-you-jump-in-your-seat surprises. But there was a lot of gore… Several scenes of mass flesh eating/feeding. However, it was far less than in your average vampire flick.
The future angle was interesting too. All cars come equipped with a daytime driving mode, where metal shutters close around the windows, and you drive by external camera. Car accidents can be quite deadly if you are a vampire, but during the day? NO TRAFFIC! If you’re willing to take the risk, and can pay for a daylight driving modification for your vehicle, you can pretty much cruise around at 120MPH with impunity. One of the strange benefits of world filled with vampires — no cops patrolling the roads during the day.
VISUALS: 1) The blood seemed too dark and thick to really be believable as blood.
2) There was this annoying piece of bug or lint or dust or something baked into the actual film of most of the movie, at the very bottom, on the left. You gotta wonder why their quality control doesn’t watch their movies in HD on a big screen. Then again, you’d think they’d notice something like this on the big movie screens, too. It’s a bit distracting when a camera pans horizontally, and everything on the screen except this one piece of lint fails to move. I think it’s very unprofessional for nobody along the process to notice this. At the very least, they could digitally remove it.
For the most part, however, this movie was quite adequate in providing modern visuals for a vampire flick. For example, car mirrors all have cameras built in, to project a vampire’s reflection onto the mirror — because vampires don’t reflect.
POLITICS/MORALS: Definitely VERY damning towards the pharmaceutical industry and corporations in general. A testament to how corporations would rather treat a disease, than cure it, and how those in power will do whatever they can to keep hold of their power, even if it is amoral.
BAD STUFF: See visuals, above.
CONCLUSION: Not quite a masterpiece, but definitely one of the more creative vampire movies I’ve ever seen. Really cool to see how the world would look when 95% of people are vampires.
RECOMMENDATION: Vampire-lovers, environmentalists, corporation-haters — this has more elements for more different people than your average vampire movie. Definitely worth checking out.
MOVIE QUOTE: Here is the worst quote, by far, from the movie, courtsey of Willem Dafoe:
Elvis: “Living in a world where vampires are the dominant species is about as safe as bare backing a 5 dollar whore.”