Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Hello friends, time for another movie countdown. This one is courtesy of Amy and Nick from Charleston, South Carolina. Here is their countdown of

The Best Vampire Movies:

10: The Lost Boys:

Here's a film that is purely 80's and doesn't care. Not only does it involve a kick-ass soundtrack but also probably the most memorable performance the two corey's will likely ever make (that's haim and feldman). It also kiefer sutherland as a young vampire leader and the criminally underrated Jason Patrick who went on to give a spectacular performance in the movie Narc. Totally campy nut never boring.
Don't Forget about Bill S. Preston, Esq.

9. The Hunger: This film was Tony Scott's film debut and it's a gem. This was before he learned to add that annoying camera shake that makes us all want to vomit. This one's a bit artsy and there's an abundance of classical music that play's almost continuously through the entire movie. It's Davie Bowie is great as a man once bitten by Catherine Denueve (a true vampire in the film) who begins to age rapidly after spending decade's together. In his attempts to stop the aging process he runs across Susan Sarandon who portrays a doctor in the field of anti-aging. This film has virtually no violence but the end scene is totally worth the wait.

8. Shadow of the Vampire: Ok, so this one's not technically a vampire movie but rather a movie about the man that portrayed the world's most famous vampire Nospheratu. The film follows the production of Nospheratu and the strange behavior of Max Shreck who many thought to be a true vampire due to the lengths he went to staying in character. Willem dafoe and John Malkovich both give stellar performances.

7. Horror of Dracula: One of the first and best of the british Hammer horror films that ruled the 60's and 70's. This was the first color retelling of the Dracula story and it is well worth viewing, Christoffer Lee as dracula and Peter Cushing as his nemesis are great. This film takes all the creak out of the dracula character and actually adds some charm and sex appeal. It conforms more closely to the story than the original Dracula from 1931 and has surprisingly little violence.
I wonder is Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee ever thought they'd both be playing Star Wars villians. Probably not.

6. Dracula 1931: There isn't much to say about this one. It's the original Dracula story with Bela Lugosi starring in his most iconic role. His performance is a bit over the top but it is required viewing for anyone that loves vampire movies.

5. The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari: This movie is also very loosely considered a vampire flick but like Nospheratu it helped to define an era or horror movies and is a prime example of german expressionist filmmaking at it's height. Those of you who haven't seen this film I encourage you to do so as soon as possible. The movie itself creates such a claustrophobic atmosphere just through lighting and set design which we see less and less in film today.

4. Abbot and Costello meet Frankenstein: Alright, so this one isn't a vampire movie. It does however involve a vampire and one of the last on screen appearances of a then morphine addicted Bela Lugosi even if he is only standing in a few scenes for the actor portraying dracula. Aside from that this movie makes the list because it's damn Hilarious. Along with Young frankenstein there has not yet been made another horror spoof that stands the test of time and that I could actually call brilliant. Check this one out for some great laughs.

3. Nospheratu 1922/1979: I know it's not really fair to bunch these two together since they stand strong as two different realisations of the same story. I personally prefer the 1979 werner Herzog version as it is beautiful to look at and Klaus Kinski gives a performance that in my opinion rivals that of max shreck. The 1922 version is like the Cabinet of Dr. Caligari a movie that defined an era and to some extent still does. It does suffers, however, from never really getting a good dvd transfer which makes it a little tougher to sit through. If you can get past this then you will be greatly rewarded and pretty creeped out as well. You can't really go wrong with either version so go check one out.

2. Vampyr:
This film by Carl theodor Dreyer is a must see. It is every bit as iconic as Nospheratu and was released the same year as the original Dracula. this Film does not however follow the dracula story. This movie is creepy, atmospheric and involves some great camera work from such an early period of cinema. I recommend this film to every fan of vampire flicks and I dare you not to like it more than Lugosi's Dracula. This one's chilling.

1. Near Dark: This film is a gem by Catherine Bigelow. It is a vampire film that never uses the word vampire as well as being a road movie. The film is about a group of travelling vampire's that stop in a texas town and happen to bite a teenage boy who very much does not want to become a vampire. I can;t go into the details too much more but bill paxton gives his most kick-ass on screen preformance ever! If nothing else watch this movie for him.

Honorable mentions:

Cronos-This is guillermo del toro's awesome movie about a man who discovers a contraption that unleashes hell on his life. In spanish but definitely worth taking a look at.
The mask of Satan aka Black Sunday-This is one of Nick's picks, so I dunno. It's good I just can't say a whole lot about it.
Interview with a vampire-Super cool movie about the making of Nospheratu
Captain kronos vampire hunter-I love this movies. Super campy but super cool.
30 days of night-This movie scared the crap out of me. One of the only times I actually wanted to leave a movie.
Dracula: Pages from a virgin's diary-Again NIck's pick I personally despise this particular film maker. It's told in black and white and is a ballet. Nuff said.

Well, I got a lot to see.

No comments: