Daybreakers (2010)

January 11, 2010 - 9:49am | FrighT MasteR
  Tags: blood, Ethan Hawke, Furst Films, future, gore, Michael Spierig, Peter Spierig, Sam Neill, vamps, Willem Dafoe

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Michael Spierig, Peter Spierig
Ethan Hawke, Sam Neill, Willem Dafoe, Claudia Karvan, Michael Dorman, Vince Colosimo

The Spierig Brothers first broke into the genre with their 2003 Aussie zombedy Undead, a film that showed much promise for the new filmmakers. A couple years later they began talking about a new vampire pic they were writing, which we now know as Daybreakers. In a time where sparkly emo vampires rule the scene, it's nice to see a break from such nonsense and go back to the vampire mythos that we're more familiar with, and with a futuristic twist as an added bonus.

Daybreakers is a film that's set in the near future, where a couple decades is all it took for vampires to take over the world's population, leaving a small percentage of humans left to be farmed for blood. We mostly follow Ethan Hawke's character as "Edward" (no relation to the other Edward, ha!) a vampire who works for a corporation that supplies a good chunk of blood for mass consumption. With fresh human blood running scarce, Edward is part of a team of scientists looking to create a synthetic alternative to the real thing. Meanwhile, the rest of the vampire population is starting to feel the effects of a lack of a proper blood diet, which (after a while) results in them transforming into a more primitive, monstrous state. 

I have to say that Daybreakers is probably one of the best additions to the vampire genre to-date. Not only is the premise interesting and original, but we're given a great cast and some sweet gore -- expect a couple great scenes involving bodies being torn to bits by a horde of blood-starved vamps! And as far as the cast goes, it's really hard to go wrong when you have both Sam Neill and Willem Dafoe together in a movie.

The way the Spierig Brothers approached certain things was well executed, as they opted to not shove easy answers down our throats, like for instance how exactly vampires came to be and how the plague started. Instead, we're given bits and pieces along the way for us to piece together ourselves. We're also pitted right into the story where they've already assimilated themselves into society, with their cars, homes and neighborhoods adapted to their new nocturnal lifestyle.

Luckily the brothers stuck with a more practical approach when it came to the blood and gore, although they did use CGI as well, it's not entirely noticeable and worked well for a lot of the bloodier scenes. There's not as much action as the trailers would lead you to believe, but we're still presented with a enough to satisfy us without drastically changing the pace of the rest of the film. There were a couple things I wished the brothers had done a little differently, but I'm otherwise very pleased with the end result.

A great film and a much-needed break from the ever-popular sparkly emo vampires that have been populating cinemas as-of late. With an excellent cast, lots of sweet gore, and a creative premise and approach towards the normally tired sub-genre, the Spierig Brothers have successfully managed to bring forth probably one of the best additions to the vampire genre to-date. Definitely be sure to check this movie out.

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FrighT MasteR's picture
FrighT MasteR is an avid horror fan / monster hunter extraordinaire, who created and has been running UHM since its inception, way back in 1999.




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