Welcome to The A-Z of Horror – an alphabetical window into the horror genre. Over the course of 26 days, I’ll be taking a look at horror in all its facets and forms, offering up suggestions of what to watch, should you be in the mood for a real good scare.
Today: V is for Vampire
If there’s one subgenre of horror that’s endured throughout the history of cinema, it’s vampire movies. From Nosferatu (1922) and Dracula (1931) to Twilight (2008) and The Transfiguration (2017), Vampires continue to remain popular with audiences.
Perhaps it’s the mystique, perhaps the immortality or perhaps its all those capes? Well, whatever it is that’s keeping vampires popular, there’s a wealth of great TV and movies to dive into when it comes to Vamps.
But where to start?
Well, more often than not, when it comes to vampire lore I’d always suggest starting with something contemporary to ease you in. My reasoning? Vampire mythology is constantly getting updated so why not start from the most recent take on the material?
Recent films worth checking out include: Let the Right One In (2008), 30 Days of Night (2007) and Blade (1998). Meanwhile, TV shows that may tickle your pickle include The Vampire Diaries (2009 – 2017) and the ultimate combo of Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997 – 2003) & Angel (1999 – 2004).
Now that said, if I were to pick out three examples of vampire content worth watching from the last 30(ish) years, I’d opt for three movie classics from the 1980s. The films listed below are all great movies, all offer something different to the genre and were all produced around a time when horror was really imaginative.
Near Dark (1987) – Directed by Kathryn Bigelow, Near Dark is a cult vampire movie about a nomadic family of vampires. The movie – which stars Adrian Pasdar, Lance Henriksen and Bill Paxton – demonstrates the allure of vampirism, as well as the difficulties of being a child of the night, and is as bleak as it is beautiful.
Fright Night (1985) – Directed by Tom Holland, Fright Night stars Roddy McDowall and Chris Sarandon and follows the story of a teenager who becomes convinced a vampire has moved in next door. In order to prove his theory to be correct, the boy enlists the help of a TV show host who he believes is an expert in vampire lore. He probably would have been better looking elsewhere.
The Lost Boys (1987) – Would it be fair to say that this is one of the best vampire movies of all-time? Hmm… that all depends on how much you enjoy Joel Schumacher-directed movies. Either way, The Lost Boys follows the story of a family who move to California and encounter a gang of vampires. With a cast that includes Kiefer Sutherland, Dianne Wiest, Corey Feldman and Corey Haim, there’s not much to dislike about The Lost Boys.
Anyone wanting to get a real appreciation for vampire movies is urged to watch the above three movies. You won’t regret it.
Tomorrow: W is for….