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Near Dark suffered in it's initial theatrical release due to it's resemblance to The Lost Boys. They share a storyline (Hapless young man falls for a girl who turns him into a Vampire, and he's forced to deal with her crazy running buddies.), and even a release date; Lost Boys blew Near Dark right out of theaters, but Near Dark found an appreciative audience on video, and deservedly so. The cast is uniformly great, especially Lance Henrikson and Bill Paxton as the lead Vamps. The script, by Director Kathryn and Eric Red, is perfect- we learn little tidbits about the history of the Vampires, but we're always kept at arms length from them. We see them as alien and threatening, and they see us a food. Bigelow does a great job, especially considering it was her solo directorial debut. The only gripe I had is the Vampirism "Cure" which seems like a Deus Ex Machina, but that's a small quibble. The Tangerine Dream score also made some scenes seem really cheesy...FAR from their best work. I think an orchestral score would have been much better, but budget constraints....
The 2-DVD set is beautifully packaged, with a die-cut inner package inside the box, and a great looking (and informative!) booklet. The film looks great; As usual, Anchor Bay does great work on their DVD transfers. It also has a commentary track from Director Bigelow, which is kinda dry and technical. Disc 2 has tons of storyboards, a weak deleted scene, a new 47-minute documentary, cast & crew bios (Very extensive!), still & ad galleries, and tons more.
Near Dark is one of those films that has flown under the radar for FAR too long, and I can't recommend it highly enough!
The ploar opposite of the 'grand' depiction of the vampire is one that was very prevelant in the 90s and still turns up quite often today. The 'lowlife' vampire, with many of the supernatural aspects played down, the charisma and the mystery often missing, very human in appearance at all times, riding around in beat-up old cars and vans, and spending the daylight hours in cheap motels or the basements of bars instead of in eerier, more impressive haunts. Most of the movies in this vein I haven't really cared for (although "The Forsaken" - heavily influenced by the movie I'm now writing about, was a pretty good watch) But one movie in this vein - and I believe it was the first of its kind - really stands out, and that's "Near Dark".
Basically, a farm kid (played by Adrian Pasdar) of about - what, maybe 18 or so? - falls in love with a girl (Jenny Wright) of his own physical age, before learning she's a vampire. Wanting to be free of the vampiric curse, the pair is aided by the boyfriend's father in an attempt to become human again, which leads them into conflict with her 'coven' - a clan of not particularly awe-inspiring, but scary, believable and highly dangerous vampires led by Lance Henrikson in one of his best roles.Read more ›
However, this is one of the few vampire movies, save for Romero's "Martin" not to use the word "vampire" nor have any fangs, mirrors, crosses, garlic and the ordinary lot.
Young Caleb (Adrian Pasdar) meets Mae ( a young, Jenny Wright from "St. Elmos Fire" and "Garp"). Passion ensues and Mae "nips" Caleb.
Uh oh! As Caleb starts to "turn" in the sunlight of early morning, he is hijacked in a rickety Winnebago by vamp family, Mae, Jesse (Lance Henriksen), Jesse's woman for eternity, Diamondback (Jenette Goldstein), their little pseudo-son, Homer & savage & sadistic vampire, Severen, played perfectly and to the hilt, by Bill Paxton.
Caleb tries to fit in but just can't seem to get the "killin' part down".
His father, Loy (Tim Thomerson) and little sister, Sarah (Marcie Leeds from "Beaches") are searching for Caleb. Will they find him in time? Watch for yourself and find out!
Another cool thing that I noticed is when Caleb staggers through town, before he goes to the bus stop to try and get home, the cinema behind him is showing "Aliens" which also featured Paxton, Henriksen and Goldstein.
If you like vampire movies like Lost Boys or Bill Paxton, this is highly recommended!
Happy Watching and Unpleasant Dreams!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A film I could watch over and over. And I do. Katheryn Bigelow's first "big budget" film. It defies classification, it is a love story, a vampire/horror story, a... Read morePublished 19 days ago by J. MacIntyre
Yeah... not sure what i was expecting, but this one fell flat for me. The bar fight scene is cool. The rest of it is instantly forgettable. skip.Published 1 month ago by ForkEatsKnife
Received timely. I had seen this movie along time ago and couldn't remember the name of it. But I saw Adrian Pasdar on a movie and started looking for the movies that he was in... Read morePublished 3 months ago by JETRICO
I'll admit that the vampire genre is not my cup of tea. Do I like several installments to this genre? Absolutely. Read morePublished 3 months ago by R. K.
My favorite vampire flik!! Expertly rendered by Kathryn Bigelow, who won best director for Hurt Locker. The soundtrack by Tangerine Dream is one of their best! Read morePublished 3 months ago by Bill A.
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