Monday, June 2, 2008

The Lost Boys (1987)

In honor of the upcoming release of Lost Boys: The Tribe (July 29, 2008), today we are going to review one of the best 80's vampire action films of all time, The Lost Boys, directed by Joel Schumacher.

The story goes something like this: a single mother moves to a seemingly quiet town on the coast of California. The eldest son, Michael, played by Jason Patric, rides a motorcycle and so, naturally, gets mixed up with the rough kids in town (i.e. Keifer Sutherland and Bill S. Preston, Esq.). It doesn't take long before he realizes that these ruffians aren't just a bunch of leather-wearing bad boys, but in fact vampires. Yes, vampires. Not sophisticated, slightly homoerotic Interview with the Vampire vampires. More like grotesque, cheesey From Dusk Till Dawn vampires.

Eventually, Michael gets tricked into becoming a vampire himself. But according to the the local vampire experts, also known as the Frog Brothers (Corey Feldman and Jamison Newlander), he can save himself by killing the head vampire before he's fully turned. Michael and his brother Sam (Corey Haim), along with the Frog brothers, stage a last stand against Keifer and his gang of creatures of the night. Keifer ends up impaled on some antlers and all's well that ends well... or so they thought?

This movie is riddled with creepy scenes and an even creepier soundtrack that continues to haunt my dreams (specifically, "Cry Little Sister" by Gerard McMahon). But the way the vampire stereotypes are depicted is truly wonderful. For example, at one point Michael and Sam enter the vampire lair during the day to kill Keifer while he's asleep. They find the "shit sucking vampires" sleeping not in coffins, but hanging from the roof like bats and dispose of a few with wooden stakes to the heart (Keifer makes it, but Bill S. Preston, Esq gets it). Too cool. Mix in a little bit of teenage rebellion and you get the train scene, which I have to say, is masterful.

What I've read about Lost Boys: The Tribe shows promise. Director P.J. Pesce (proud director of From Dusk Till Dawn 3: The Hangman's Daughter) appears to be sticking to the formula; i.e. California, vampires, Feldman, Haim, gore, etc. All of the ingredients are there. He's just got to execute. Let's keep our finger's crossed on this one.

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