Vampire movies have been around almost as long as movies themselves. A long history of Dracula and Nosferatu-centric films is apparent in cinema history and vampires are still a big audience pull to this day. Franchises like Twilight show that vampires are still a relevant genre today, but are some of these fanged flicks all they are held up to be?
Overrated is a term that often seems loaded, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that a film is good or bad, it simply means that it may have gained unwarranted status amongst other releases of the same genre. With that being said, there are some truly overrated vampire films that should be re-evaluated.
fans of Twilight are notorious for being extremely enthusiastic, they are even collectively known as Twi-Hards. The book series and resulting movie franchise have a ravenous fan base, who are very invested in the plight and romances of the central characters. For those unfamiliar with the story of Twilightthe story follows Bella (Kristen Stewart) as she navigates her new life in Forks, Washington while also trying to reconcile the fact that vampires exist and one of them, Edward (Robert Pattinson), is in love with her.
The reason that Twilight falls into the overrated category of films is that it is objectively a bad film based on bad source material. The characters are flat, and the central plot revolves around an extremely unhealthy relationship. Much has been made about the acting of Stewart and Pattinson in the franchise, however, the fault doesn’t lie with their portrayal it lies with the writing.
Another movie franchise with numerous entries, Underworld tells the story of a centuries-long war between vampires and Lycans. Selene (Kate Beckinsale) is a vampire Death Dealer who takes great pride in her work as a Lycan hunter for the vampire elsewhere. Selene becomes embroiled in a Lycan plot to capture and experiment on a human doctor Michael (Scott Speedman) and must do all she can to prevent him from falling into the hands of Lycan leader Lucian (Michael Sheen) who wants to destroy the vampires for good .
Underworld is a strange franchise. Thoroughly enjoyable but not breaking new ground, the first film opened to less than stellar box office takings and pretty poor reviews. Since then, it has inexplicably spawned 4 sequels that continue the story of the vampires, Lycans, and hybrids. while Underworld is an enjoyable action movie, it didn’t warrant numerous sequels and the strangely loyal fan base it acquired.
The 1992 movie Buffy The Vampire Slayer spawned the generation defining tv show of the same name. Wise-cracking valley girl Buffy (Kristy Swanson) just wants to be a cheerleader and go to prom, but she soon discovers that she is the Chosen One, one who must combat the evils of vampires and keep them at bay. Also starring Paul Reubens, Donald Sutherland, Luke Perry, and Rutger Hauer, the movie is a fun ride if a little vapid.
However, because of the television show’s legacy, the movie is often held in much higher regard. On its own, the movie is a fun and campy curiosity that is a great watch but looking back on it now it isn’t the incredible piece of pop culture that it’s held up to be. Buffy herself is kind of annoying in the film and Luke Perry’s clueless Pike just comes across as a hindrance.
Jack Crow (James Woods) has been raised by the church to be their head vampire slayer after his family was brutally murdered by bloodsuckers when he was a child. With a team of vampire hunters behind him, Crow’s main mission is to stop an ancient crucifix known as the Black Cross of Béziers from falling into the hands of vampire big bad Valek. Along the way, the team utilizes the psychic link forged between Valek and prostitute Katrina that he has bitten to track him down.
John Carpenter is undoubtedly a horror master, but vampires falls flat. Described as a neo-Western vampire film, the plot is predictable, with the inevitable betrayal by the member of the church a boring “twist” seen a mile off. vampires is often held up as a great 90s vampire film, but purely because of who its director is.
What is sure to be a controversial entry on the list Interview With The Vampire is undeniably a good movie but is it the incredible genre-defining film it is held up to be? The film is undeniably beautiful, with the period costumes and settings stealing almost as many scenes as Kirsten Dunst. Starring Tom Cruise as Lestat, Brad Pitt as Louis, and Dunst as child vampire Claudia, the film is Louis in present-day recounting his life story as a vampire to skeptical journalist Christian Slater.
The film itself is overly long, with too much stuffed into the runtime, however, the core relationship between Lestat and Louis remains compelling. Cruises’ performance as Lestat is over the top, went on a parody of the French aristocracy of the period, and can detract from the overall experience of the film.
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