06 October 2012

October 6th

Near Dark (1987) directed by Kathryn Bigelow
I was woken up early Saturday morning by a co-worker.  A server broke at the hospital.  Badly.  A kind of important one.  For more or less the next 15 hours after that, I was stuck on a conference call, staring at my laptop.  Not fun.  A wee stressful, you might say.

After the thing was finally fixed at 11:30 P.M., I still needed to get in my horror movie for the day.  There wasn't much of a decision-making process needed: I required horror comfort food.  I needed a movie to bundle myself up in and relax.  I think '80s slashers are often a good choice for such a thing, but I'd just watched Hatchet yesterday and that was pretty close.  So: Near Dark.

My favorite vampire movie.  I unashamedly love every second of it.  Logically, I can see problems with the film: the actress playing young Sarah isn't very good, some of dialogue might sound a little awkward, the score may strike some as '80s-synth-cheezy, the transfusion cure might be seen as a cop-out.  Doesn't matter.  This isn't a movie to watch with a clinical eye; it's an emotional experience, a mood, a series of feelings.  Watching Near Dark, for me, is like taking a walk on a cool night and listening to the wind blow through the leaves.  Better, because of Tangerine Dream's dark and mysterious score, which sets such an incredible tone throughout the film.

I always notice or focus on something different every time I watch this film (five times now in ten Six Weeks).  This time, I picked up on the loneliness of the characters.  Vampire or human -- but especially vampire -- the characters' true motivation, in the end, is to avoid being lonely.  It's the reason the vampires form their make-shift family, the reason Caleb approaches Mae, the reason Mae bites Caleb, and the reason Homer grabs Sarah.  One of the more chilling lines in the film is when Mae tells Caleb that she'll "still be here when the light from that star gets down here to earth in a billion years."  Eternal life is a terrifying idea.  Eternal life with no one to share it with, even worse.

Watched: blu-ray from Lionsgate.

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