I’ve just finished having a movie-day, which is nothing more than watching a lot of movies on one day. I had some titles on my media player which were there for many months but somehow I never got around to watch. Glancing over the titles that were long overdue I thought it would be nice to have a vampire themed day as I had three movies starring Hollywood’s favorite parasites which I still hadn’t watched: Daybreakers, Let Me In and The Twilight Saga: Eclipse. As you can see, a pretty wide variety especially for vampire movies. First up was Daybreakers.
I didn’t know much about Daybreakers before I started it and expected some simple vampire flick. It turns out my expectations were way lower than what was put on screen. Daybreakers handles the vampires a bit like the mutants in X-Men: they are the next step in evolution. In this movie vampires have taken over society and live it in a way like humans did. Remaining humans are hunted and used as cattle, only kept alive for providing blood to the vampires, stored in a same manner as humans were in The Matrix. Since the human population is decimating and on the verge of extinction scientist do their best to create a synthetic blood as a full substitute for human blood. In a gross scene it’s obvious that this solution is not quite ready to be released to the vampire public. But the vampires need human blood because without it they mutant into bat-like creatures, with no more civilization in them. They can;t even speak no more.
One of the scientists working on this substitute is Edward and it’s quite soon clear that one of his motivations for the substitute is because he feels sorry for the humans. His feelings are discovered by some humans who are working underground to find a cure as they have a vampire in their midst who has changed back to human and they need to recreate the process so that vampires can be cured.
The strongest point of the movie is the world that has been created, or remodeled to suit the dominant species. Life takes place at sundown, there are underground tunnels that serve as a pedestrian area and subways have become the general means of transportation. The roads are empty because the only people, uh vampires, that drive are the ones with such an income that they can afford cars that have UV-protection windows and are rigged with cameras. You don’t want to be caught in a traffic jam when the sun comes up in an unequipped classic. Seeing what happens to them when they do come in contact with the sun means they won’t even leave their car behind as an inheritance. It’s a bit weird that vampires become a dominant species in a world which is fueled by the sun which is lethal to them. It reminded me of how the aliens in Signs came to conquer a planet that consists for 70% out of water when they’re allergic to water.
The cure to turn vampires back into humans is really simple. I wouldn’t want to spoil anything but I didn’t quite understand why they needed a vampire scientist on board to figure out how to create a way to change vampires back to humans with certain ease and available to everybody. For the record: I’m talking about recreating the first change back, not the final cure. Instead of using an airtight tank they could have just used a pool with a cover I guess.
This is a movie admired when I watched it, but when you think of it afterwards makes you start asking questions about the logic of it all. The movie creates an intriguing, and somewhat logical, vision of a world where vampires rule, but in the end revolves around a lot of guys with automatic weapons to resolve the story.