Forget about those new age, dime a dozen vampire movies. Near Dark, by Katherine Bigelow (James Cameron’s ex-wife, and sometimes superior director), is by far one of the most original, fresh vampire tales out there.
Sporting an awesome cast including Bill Paxton, Lance Henrikson, and Jenette Goldstein (Vasquez from Aliens), Near Dark is the classic story of boy meets girl, but girl is a vampire and moves with a travelling family of other vampires. As he tries to be one of them after she turns him, he finds that he’s too weak for their lifestyle, and his father and sister catching up with him is the catalyst for the climax of the story, playing out to a very entertaining end. It just felt epic from the beginning to the end.
Filled with more action than I expected, and great lines (I can never get enough of Bill Paxton, he does great as a side character), and full of substance, this is a prime example of how cool a vampire movie could be. Twilight has nothing on this movie, and is a hollow, shallow, crapfest in comparison (my apologies to those of you who do like it, as I am friends with some here on MW who do like it).
I really believe modern directors need to step back and remember the 80′s, and all the classics that came out of that decade. Movies back then, such as this, were full of likable, odd characters that you remember, and the stories played out to satisfying conclusions. It seemed directors were more confident about giving a strong, single story instead of trying to setup every movie they do into a mediocre franchise.
My only real complaint is that the movie felt too short. I would have loved an additional half hour more of story, but I suppose the way it plays out, that’s not necessary. When your only complaint is that you wish it would go on, you know you have a winner.
If you’re looking for something fresh and original, try Near Dark on for size. I have a feeling you’ll love it, too.
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SENTINEL FOUNDER PAT MURPHY