Do you remember when the release of a new Vampire movie was something of an event to look forward to, to cherish? Of course I am talking about the pre-shiny spangled sparkling Twilight saga that for many of us has put more than one nail in the genre’s coffin..... if you would pardon a very bad pun.
Now is not the time to go into my intensely traumatic account of the one cinematic visit I took (dragged along by my daughter as a matter of fact) to see one of those teenage angst-filled, turgid and syrupy so-called vampire flicks – but that experience of being stuck in a movie hall with row to row of sighing & giggling pre-pubescent girls with their Twi-mums will haunt me forever. No horror film experience has ever come close to that nightmare of an afternoon.
Since then, Zombies have become the new Vampires on TV and cinema, though the backlash against this particular genre can’t be too far way methinks.
All of which makes rather interesting that the much vaunted Vampire movie Byzantium is released this week.
Gemma Arterton (see the word ‘gorgeous’ in the dictionary, her name is next to it) and Saoirsi Ronan play two women who, not only have been trying to keep their blood sucking habits a secret from everyday society, they have also have been evading a rather nasty group of the fellow undead for most of the time since the 19th century. Eventually we find them in this film at a rather dilapidated seaside town in an effort to find safety. That is, until their secret is finally discovered…..
By all accounts, Byzantium does deviate somewhat from traditional Vampire tradition and legend (though hopefully not in a sparkly kind of way please!) whilst still including a strong Gothic element that will still please many of the more traditional devotees of vampire storytelling - of which I include myself. The initial reviews that I've glanced upon tend to be on the very positive side, bestowing praise particularly on the two female leads but also for the familiar yet innovative take upon the Vampire genre.
It will be interesting to see whether this is the beginning of the Cinematic resurrection of our blood sucking friends of the night , if indeed it actually needs resurrecting at all. I think I’ll leave the puns there.