Archive for July, 2014


In my next edition of #WatchingEveryVampireMovieEver , we took a stab (tehe) at The Twilight Saga.

Say what you will.

That they are amazing. That they are awful. That it’s mormon propaganda. That it’s a blank slate for chicks to slip in to so they can have a vampire romance.

I don’t care.

I have read the books.

They were an easy read.

I have to give Stephenie Meyer credit for having an idea, putting it on paper, selling it, and getting people who would otherwise never read to read. #GoLiteracy

It’s not freakin’ classic literature. But neither is Charlaine Harris, or Christopher Moore, or Mark Z. Danielewski — all of whom I, and others, enjoy.

Hell, my three books are the length of her last one, so good job with all those words.

Her editors released her with tense issues, writing problems, etc. There are a lot of bad authors out there, not all of them get picked up.  And maybe some of our favorite authors get released after drafts and drafts of polishing. I think there is a lot of people to blame 🙂

But there is no need for blame.

I like what Anne Rice had to say about Twilight and True Blood to George Stroumboulopoulos:

“GS: What do you think about the mania around Twilight?
AR: I think it was a stroke of genius for ‘The Vampire Diaries’ and Stephenie Meyers to put vampires in high school. I never thought of that – my vampires would NOT go to high school… I’d have to torture them to go to high school! What I did with them was totally different. I wanted very glamorous, mythological vampires – and they did the opposite. They domesticated them, they put them in high school, and Charlaine Harris put them in Louisiana in Sam’s “Merlotte’s” corner bar, it was great… I’m a fan of Charlaine Harris, I love ‘True Blood’…”

Not that Anne Rice is the end all be all for vampire lore. Each book and each author creates their own world, forsaking and adapting all sorts of mythologies to make their vampires perfect for them.

But making them accessible. Good job.

Anyway!

So I watched Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, and Breaking Dawn 1 and 2.

I originally rented Twilight from a Redbox and watched it quickly after I read the book. About a month later, I saw New Moon in the theaters in opening night with my girlfriend.

Then Eclipse. Opening Night. Then Breaking Dawn Pt 1. Opening Night. Then Breaking Dawn Pt 2. about a week after opening. By that point, my interest had waned.

But I own three of them on DVD, mainly bc I love the soundtracks. And come on, everyone loves Alice 🙂

So when the movie I wanted to watch wasn’t available on Netflix, I turned to my DVD collection.

Yep, it was a little rough to get in to. That silly, silly scene where Bella can’t use ketchup.

ketchup

#TheStruggleIsReal

I realized that the most engaging part of the movies were the side characters.

Billy Burke (Bella’s dad, Charlie) being a dad full of dad humor. Anna Kendrick complaining about watching movies full of zombies and no hot guys and kissing.

I like the soundtrack.

I once was told that putting a scene to a Radiohead song does not make it awesome, but I respectfully disagree.

Carter Burwell’s score in the first movie is beautiful.

But let’s actually talk about vampires.

Weird.

They can drink animal blood, they are strong, and cold. They are fast and strong. Their eyes change colors. They talk briefly of them being “monsters” – but there is no actual transformation; no connection to hell, other than Edward thinking he doesn’t have a soul.

Here is where it gets interesting.

Stephenie Meyers gave some of her vampires powers. The ability to read minds, to tell the future, to see every thought you’ve ever had, to protect people, to make people feel pain, to control moods.  It gives them some interesting advantages.

And of course, they sparkle in the sun, bc, from what I can remember, their skin is cold like marble and as hard as diamonds.

I’ve got to hand it to her, she took the vampire mythology and made it her own. She didn’t take the Buffy world, or the Anne Rice world, or the True Blood world and plug her story in to that.

Whether or not it’s awesome is beyond the point (tehe). It’s her world.

I’m not going to get in to the plot of these movies. You all know what it’s about. If you like it, you like it, and if you don’t, independent of if you’ve seen it or not, you don’t.

They are vampire movies and they have been watched.

#WatchingEveryVampireMovieEver

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The first movie I decided to watch was Fright Night and it’s remake of the same name.

I first saw Fright Night with my mom when I was in high school. I didn’t like it. I was distracted by the general 80s unallure of Chris Sarandon, the bad score, and the gross teeth. Remember, I was in high school.

But I rewatched it.

I was still distracted by the score, less disinterested in Chris Sarandon, and still grossed out by their teeth.

I guess I haven’t matured that much in 14 years.

But I liked it.

Have you seen it?

It is about a kid, Charlie (actor William Ragsdale) who starts to believe his neighbor, Jerry (actor Chris Sarandon) is a vampire. We find out with Charlie that indeed Jerry is a vampire, but no one will believe him — not even his best friend, Evil (Actor Stephen Geoffreys), and his girlfriend, Amy (actress Amanada Bearse – Marcy D’arcy of Married with Children fame). (Amy has unfortunate 80s hair).

Charlie visits a late night horror actor Peter Vincent (actor Roddy McDowall), who doubts him as well.

When Charlie plans to attack Jerry, his girlfriend and bff decide to ask Mr. Vincent (no relation to Roosevelt St. Vincent) to “test” Jerry for vampirism — which they think he’ll fail.

When Jerry fails to produce a reflection in a mirror in an unintentional “test” — that’s when shit gets real.

It’s a fun movie. It’s certainly in the Horror realm, but is lighthearted and full of humor.

What is so vamptastic about it?

They go through what feels like all of the myths.

Jerry is affected by crosses, holy water, stakes, and sunlight.

We see Jerry shoveling soil into a coffin, turning into mist and a giant demon bat.

Preying on virgins, invitations into homes. Clocks – which I knew was a myth, but I can’t seem to find confirmation of it. And also, if you kill the maker, the made turn back human.

He goes from human to demon in stages. First with long fingers and nails, then his whole face, with elongated, jagged teeth and crazy eyes.

Fright-Night-1985-Jerry-Dandridge-Chris-Sarandon

Spoiler, bff Evil gets turned by Jerry, but ends up morphing into a wolf (a regular dog looking wolf) then once attacked, he turns into this gross monster that reminds me of that gross monster in Big Trouble in Little China.

Picture-271See! Gross.

But, more spoilers, Amy the gf is also turned by Jerry. She is nightmarish.

images

So the only thing consistent is their effed up teeth.

Another inconsistency is Amy turns back human after Jerry is killed, but, we are to assume the Evil is still “haunting” Jerry’s house. (I just thought of that now, it didn’t throw me off at all while watching the movie).

Now for the 2011 remake.

I like what they did. I like how they updated it — what they kept the same and what they made different.

Charlie is now played by the adorable Anton Yelchin (of Star Trek fame), Jerry by Colin Ferrell, Amy by Imogene Poots, and Evil by Christopher Mintz-Plasse (Of I Love You, Man/SuperBad/Kick-Ass fame). And of course Peter Vincent is now the hilariously decked out David Tennant.

I saw this Fright Night in the theater and loved every second of it. I also rewatched it this weekend to get a better grasp on the changes.

2011 Jerry still has an aversion to daylight, stakes, crosses, holy water, and needs to be invited in, but does not turn into mist or bats. 2011 Charlie lights about a million candles, but we don’t actually see it affect Jerry.

We don’t see 2011 Jerry dealing with coffins, but he does seem to be awake during the day (unlike 1985 Jerry who was quite cranky when awoken mid day). 2011 vampires also burst into fiery ash, similar to Blade 3 (And a very interesting novel I read once upon a time).

Both 2011 and 1985 Jerrys have super strength. I forgot to mention that earlier.

2011 Jerry makes a similar grotesque change, with teeth reminiscent of Amanda Bearse in the original.

vampire-jerry-big

And like the original, we find gf Amy turning vampire (although very pointedly not a virgin), then turning back human once Jerry is killed.

In 2011, we have some fun camera work with the camera-shy vampires, like in 1985 we had fun mirror play with Amy and Jerry.

You know what is interesting? Neither Jerry is particularly pale.

I don’t generally like my vampires all grossy and demony (though they never talk about vampire origins or connections to hell) – I did like these guys.

I think that’s it?

Is that it?

That’s it.

Stay tuned for my next installment of #WatchingEveryVampireMovieEver

 

 

 

 

You may or may not have heard that I started a little game with myself…to watch every vampire movie.

Ever.

You may say it’s impossible.

It probably is.

But I have a list, so far of only 500 movies, that are vampire related.

So as I tick off the movies on my list, read my fun blog about what I thought 🙂