With Underworld 3: Rise of the Lycans hitting cinemas Friday, Movies.ie recommends the following vamp related flick to sink your teeth into….
Remember when vampire Selene fell hard for human turned hybrid Michael Corvin in the first Underworld film? Great! Well you can forget all about those two because they won’t be in the new franchise prequel; Underworld 3: Rise of the Lycans. Heck, they weren’t even born yet. Instead the film focuses on the Lycans revolution against the vampires as they rise up out of slavery and turn on their masters. With the release of “Underworld 3” this Friday and the massive success of vamp flick “Twilight” – we take a look at some lesser known, often overlooked vampire films for you to stink your teeth into.
While George Romero may have received international success for his brain eaters in the Living Dead movies, somehow his take on bloodsuckers was swept under the rug. Yet Martin is easily one of the most terrifying takes on vampirism in modern film. The movie relies on the mythos surrounding the vampire, as a listless, quasi-autistic teenager, Martin, suspects he is actually a centuries-old vampire. His style of murder is more reminiscent of a serial killer than the undead; he has no aversion to sunlight, he can see himself in mirrors, and is very much human. The additional twist to the film is the vampire hunter who chases Martin. Rather than another Van Helsing, the hunter is actually a religious zealot whose own blind piousness seems to perpetuate Martin’s thirst for blood. The movie requires some patience due to its slow pace, but as Vampire movies go, Martin is one of the most innovative.
Shadow of the Vampire
Despite the great cast and amazing script, this film was inexplicably buried. Shadow of the Vampire is a fictional account of the filming of Nosferatu, except the director F. W. Murnau (John Malkovich) has contracted an actual vampire to play the role for the sake of realism. The vampire starts picking off the cast and crew while everyone remains adamant that, “he is just a really good actor.” The film satirizes the idea of method acting, and the lengths people are willing to go to in order to create a realistic movie. But there’s also a good deal of horror and surprise for the audience who demands both from a vampire film.
Upon its release in 1983, Roger Ebert called The Hunger, “an agonizingly bad vampire movie.” But it has since garnered a following among scarf-wearing dilatants who watch movies for atmosphere rather than plot. Incidentally, this group of people is also the main fan base for David Bowie, who stars in the film. Still, the movie is surprisingly good. It deals almost exclusively with the seductive nature of vampires and suggests that no one becomes a member of the undead who doesn’t want it. The movie is ripe with sexual tension between Bowie and two women (which in itself requires a suspension of disbelief). Ultimately, the film does deliver but replaces terror with general uneasiness.
Let the Right One In
One of the most original vampire stories to date, “Left the Right One In” follows the life of the bullied and friendless 12-year-old Oskar as he establishes a relationship with a young girl who starts killing everyone he knows. Upon discovering that she is a vampire, Oskar doesn’t try to kill her or even condemn her. Their relationship grows stronger in spite of, or because of, her terrible secret. The movie is both a coming of age story, a sexual awakening, and a horror all spun up into a beautiful, delicious Swiss Roll that is definitely worth seeing.
Underworld 3: Rise of the Lycans is in Irish cinemas from Friday, Jan. 23rd.