I’m not a really huge fan of vampire movies. There is no specific reason, but I think that it may stem from the control aspect. Where a vampire seemingly is in complete control of a situation through strong will, enhanced senses, animal control, shape-shifting, and whatever mumbo jumbo eye brow raised hypnosis stuff that he does to wield his powers over a helpless victim, a zombie is purely a walking, death machine. Whether slow or fast, a zombie is mindless and only wants one thing, regardless of powers and abilities: the very yummy, scrumptious, taste of human flesh and blood. Yes! I absolutely love zombie movies!
Oh by the way, in case you wanted to know, the picture above is Lorenzo Lamas (officially one of Top 20 worst actors of all time) playing gay Dracula at Kean University somewhere in New Jersey. Does Dracula really have to wear lipstick and blush in every incarnation as well as suck your blood? I don’t get it. And why do so many women (and some men apparently) think that’s hot?
Moving on…there are exceptions of course in the vampire canon of movies that I have really enjoyed: I love Bram Stokers ultra cool Dracula, Fright Night was one of the first vampire movies that I watched when I was but a wee one and I still every once in awhile have the phrase stuck in my head “You have to have faith!”, From Dusk to Dawn allowed me to experience the pleasure of wearing a “Cesar” for about two years around the time that film came out (thank you Seth Gecko), and dangit I still think Salem’s Lot is one of the creepiest movies I’ve ever seen.
But my all time favorite vampire movie for a number of reasons, is the 1987 cult classic Near Dark. The film stars an entourage of the movie Aliens cast, Lance Hendrickson, Bill Paxton, Jenette Goldstein, as well as Adrian Pasdar (Nathan Petrelli from Heroes) and although you never hear one person in the movie called a “vampire” you know what they are: a gang of ruthless, blood sucking vampires.
The story is pretty simple, set in Oklahoma, Nathan Petrelli gets bit by a sexy young girl that he thinks is going to put out. Instead she bites him on the neck and runs. A little bit later as the sun comes up, he realizes that his flesh is burning and if he doesn’t make it back his home, he’ll die.
Along comes an RV packed to the hilt with the vampire gang and they save his ass and bring him in. Over the course of the movie they introduce him to the vampire ways including one of the great classic scenes of all time in any movie…
the infamous bar scene…and one of Bill Paxtons greatest…if not his greatest movie role. Oh and Twilight fans don’t watch it…the scene is VERY graphic…and vampires don’t shed tears…do they? Below is the scene with some extras book ending it…enjoy! Oh and Phantasm fans will recognize James LeGros as the teenage pool playing cowboy…
You get the idea now huh? Like the Gravediggers once said: You don’t pull on Supermans cape, or spit into the wind, you don’t pull the mask off the old Lone Ranger, and you don’t mix red necks and vampires!
So at some point after this, Nathan Petrelli gets a blood transfusion (apparently the only way to reverse the vampire process is to get a blood transfusion from a unicorn) and the gang kidnaps Petrelli’s sister to convert her to their ways instead.
Of course Nathan Petrelli doesn’t like it leading to the movies finally. SPOILER ALERT! Twilight fans better not turn your lipsticked blushing faces so you can see how a REALLY GOOD vampire movie should end. Here is the final scene of the movie and one of my top ten chase scenes on foot (with all due respect to Last of the Mohicans, Point Break, Casino Royale, Bullitt (you forgot about the hospital chase scene!), Bourne Supremacy…damn there are some good ones out there!). Sure it’s not very long, but it is so fucking intense as all of the vampires are trying to catch each other and in turn are catching on fire! Wicked!
Oh and that music score is by the second greatest band of all time (Ash Ra Tempel with Manuel Gottsching is still the best), Tangerine Dream. Yes the same group that did the score for Risky Business, Legend, The Amazing Race, The Keep, Thief, Sorcerer, 3 O’Clock High, and Firestarter to name a few.
Despite the horrible graphics, the Keep is one of my favorite movies of all time. If you can find it (thank you amazon.com), it’s a real classic starring Scott Glenn, Jurgen Prochnow, Gabriel Bryne and Ian McKellen and is about Nazi’s stealing from a haunted keep. Did I mention it’s directed by Michael Mann? Yes! Here is one of the scenes where two Nazi guards start the process of unleashing the demon from the Keep…scored by TD.
So yesterday, I read this article on empire.com that apparently Twilight the movie has discouraged producer Brad Fuller (seen here with boy toy pal Michael Bay) from making a remake of the classic Near Dark. As I’ve stated here many, many times, only in specific cases am I a fan of remaking classics. And I’m not exactly sure Near Dark could be remade. I’m not a big fan of Nathan Petrelli, but the rest of the cast was absolutely stellar. Could they do it with better effects and maybe more in depth into the background story of each character, yes. Can they replicate they genuine creepiness and terror of the first one? No way.
But, as much as I would say don’t remake Near Dark, I would want Brad Fuller to not remake it because you just shouldn’t, not because of what he said on Empire, “I think that Twilight was the same type of thing we were going for although Near Dark was a much darker, sexier, rated R version of that. But I’m concerned that, conceptually, that Near Dark and Twilight are too similar in terms of a vampire movie. For now, that movie is on hold.”
Twilight is a gigantic load of vampire shit and if Brad Fuller was going to remake a movie that is in any way similar to Twilight, then he just shouldn’t remake it. But come on Brad, don’t say that you are not remaking it because of Twilight! Look at this! Why is this load of crap so popular??
That’s like saying, I’m not going to remake the movie “The Keep” because it’s too similar to that play starring Lorenzo Lamas as Dracula. Just say “I’m not remaking this movie because the original cannot be touched!”.
Twilight the movie might have won the war this time…but they will not win the battle.