B-Movie Awesomeness: Near Dark
I’ve been meaning to get around to some of Kathryn Bigelow’s older movies since seeing The Hurt Locker way back over the summer. She has been quite the genre hopper over the years, making good movies that are quite different from one another. I’ve been particularly impressed with her work in Point Break (action/adventure), Strange Days (Sci-Fi/Crime) and The Weight of Water (Erotic Thriller). She’s like the female Stanley Kubrick! Okay, that might be pushing it.
It’s interesting to look back and see how many great directors got their start with B-horror flicks. Peter Jackson had movies like Dead Alive and The Frighteners, while Sam Raimi had The Evil Dead movies. Kathryn Bigelow is another example, with this little slice of awesomeness.
Near Dark (Kathryn Bigelow, 1987)
With Adrian Pasdar, Bill Paxton and Lance Henrikson.
What we’ve got here is essentially a B-vampire-western about a cowboy who is forced to join a gang of leather-clad vampires when he gets a little too close to a female member of their clan. It’s got that classic 80’s feel to it, with the synth-rock score and the overly fiery explosions a la Mad Max. Bill Paxton’s over-the-top antics are perfect for his role as the hot-headed member of the vamp gang. Sure, there is some bad acting and some cheesy effects here and there but that is to be expected. It’s a B-movie for crying out loud! The important thing is that it’s a lot of fun.
It’s a massively overlooked movie, probably because it came out the same year as The Lost Boys. I’ve even read that a remake was in the works a few years ago, only to be killed by the success of Twilight. I guess they didn’t want to see it suffer the same fate twice.
RIYL: Daybreakers, The Road Warrior, The Devil’s Rejects.