We start the Top 7. You finish the Top 10. I'm going to stick my neck out and say this list will be something you can really sink your teeth into. It will be your cross to bear if you don't read it. OK, those are all the awful vampire puns I could muster. More importantly, Twilight fandom is upon us, so before we are all blinded by dreamboat Edward Cullen, let's sift through the millions (seems like it) of other vampire films that Hollywood has made.
This list focuses on the last 25 years of blood sucking. So if you are looking to reminisce over the brilliance of Nosferatu from 1922, it probably feels like I stabbed you in the heart (with a wooden stake). And I want to offer Jim Carrey a sincere apology. I couldn't figure out what film I could cut in order to get Once Bitten on the list. That, and I watched it again ... doesn't hold up. I have now tried to think of a 'holy water' pun for five minutes ... I failed. Onto the list.
7. Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992)
Recap: Buffy (Kristy Swanson), the plucky cheerleader, discovers she comes from a long line of slayers. She's the defender of the world against vampires. But she's more interested in dating the captain of the bball team. With the help of her instructor Merrick (Donald Sutherland), she learns the ways and attempts to save the day. Reason: The cast includes Rutger Hauer, Paul Reubens, Hilary Swank, David Arquette and let's not forget Luke Perry. I decided he would be a film star after this, I'm not wrong, I'm just still waiting. Buffy adds the right amount of humor (Reuben's death scene comes to mind) and Swanson has a great airhead transformation. Unfortunately the TV series proves how amazing a teenage vampire slayer can truly be.
6. Moster Squad (1987)
Recap: Dracula, Frankenstein, Wolfman and Gilman are searching for an amulet and the only ones trying to stop them are a group of kids who are diehard monster fans. Reason: The screenplay isn't awful. Seriously, that's a compliment. Most 80s movies are rough to rewatch because of the dialogue. Shane Black wrote this, along with the Lethal Weapon movies and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. Sure, most of it borrows from Goonies and E.T. but I'm fine with that when you add Dracula to the mix.
5. Blade (1998)
Recap: Blade (Wesley Snipes) has one goal, and that's to kill all the vampires. He's a hybrid between man and vampire since he mother was bitten while she was pregnant. With the help of Whistler (Kris Kristphorsen) they must try and stop Deacon Frost (Stephen Dorff) from unleashing the blood god onto this world. Reason: While you can't always bet on black ... sorry Snipes, I was more shocked that you could bet on Dorff as a great villain. This is where high-tech action meets vampire flicks. The martial arts and weaponry give an added jolt to vampire genre.
4. From Dusk Till Dawn (1996)
Recap: The Gecko brothers (George Clooney and Quentin Tarantino) are criminals on the run, and their last job required hostages. So now the Fuller family (with Harvey Keitel and Juliette Lewis) are across the border as well. And it seems like everything is going to be A-OK. Until the bar turns out to be a haven for vampires to feed. Reason: The bar is filled with fantastic characters, including Salma Hayek dancing on the bar. But really, this is about seeing how cool Clooney can be, and killing. Zombies and vampires are the only guilt free killing out there. And this film has boatloads of it.
3. Lost Boys (1987)
Recap: After moving to a small town, two boys are taken in by different groups. Mike (Jason Patric) falls for a beautiful girl (Jami Gertz) and his little brother Sam (Corey Haim) is convinced by a new friend (Corey Feldmen) that the town is overrun with vampires ... and it's up to them to stop them. Reason: This wasn't the Coreys apex ... I still give that to License to Drive but it's dark, scary, funny and one of my first tastes of horror as a kid. Kiether Sutherland has the perfect sociopathic eyes for being the vampire leader ... or is he? Maybe my vampire mind was too young as this point, but it's a twist I didn't seem coming. "You're a vampire Michael, just wait until Mom finds out."
2. Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992)
Recap: This comes close to Bram Stoker's novel and explains the story of Prince Dracula (Gary Oldman) and his love for his fiancee and her look alike (Winona Ryder). Dracula travels to London to seduce her after locking up her groom-to-be (Keanu Reeves). The crafty Professor Abraham Van Helsing comes to her aid and then takes the fight back to Transylvania. Reason: Oldman, Ryder, Hopkins, Reeves as well as Cary Elwes, Bill Campbell and Tom Waits give this film an epic feel at the hands of Francis Ford Coppola. Sure, it shows that Reeves struggles with period pieces but mainly because of how dominant Oldman is capturing the seduction of Dracula. This is one of the few vampire films to get the heartbreaking romance right. This was also around the time when everyone assumed Ryder would be THE next great actress.
1. Interview with a Vampire (1994)
Recap: A journalist (Christian Slater) lands the perfect story. Louis de Pointe du Lac (Brad Pitt) tells him his life as a vampire from 1791 to the present. Lestat de Lioncourt (Tom Cruise) brought Louis into the vampire world and eventually Claudia (Kirsten Dunst) as well. Louis looked to break away from Lestat, but he always had a way of catching up. Reason: Dunst is an absolute showstopper. It's insane she wasn't nominated for an Oscar. They really get into the tortured mindset of a vampire with Interview. Louis feeds on rats, and is ashamed of what he has become, Lestat embraces it and kills whenever he pleases him. Sure, the wigs take a little getting used to, but it's still a mesmerizing film. With a great, unexpected jolt in the last scene. Here's an added little nugget ... It's said that River Phoenix was set to play the role that Slater later filled.
There’s the Top 7, now what should be in the Top 10?