Tuesday, September 29, 2015

MOVIE: Byzantium

Another vampire movie to appear recently on Netflix is BYZANTIUM.  In theory this film should be bowed down by he weight of its tired old tropes of first love, coming of age, mother/daughter strife and braided present-and-past storylines.  Yet somehow the quality of the screenplay and acting, and downbeat but atmospheric look of the movie carry it through.

It may help that vampirism gives both the length of time and the stakes to make melodramatic behavior of the leads believable motivations.  Mother vampire seeks a quiet life of transient prostitution to conceal her daughter from an ancient threat she has never fully explained to the girls. Daughter seeks a more refined and respectable lifestyle and yearns to tell someone, perhaps her new quasi-boyfriend, the truth about who she really is.

Both backstory and current conflict come to a crux on a dark pier, where both heroines will be either destroyed or transformed.

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