Monday, 18 May 2009


I have caught up with the movies that I promised I would. Despite reading some awful things about it on the Internet, I thoroughly enjoyed Twilight. The characters were interesting, the whole tone of the film was nicely moody, using the local weather to great effect. It segued pretty neatly from humour -- the baseball game -- to the threatening arrival of the bad vamps. And, despite the fact that we've met vampires who are on the side of good before now, it's still rare to meet any who are positively likable the way the Cullens are. What surprised me most, though, was that to my mind Twilight had a distinctly Sixties feel. Maybe it was the rather psychedelic soundtrack. Maybe it was Kristen Stewart's hippy-chick look. Maybe it was the way the Cullens -- who aren't related, after all -- reminded me more of a small commune than a family. But mostly, it was Robert Pattinson's dense-eyebrowed moodiness, which put me instantly in mind of James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause. Times change. Even vampires have changed over the last handful of decades (see my earlier posting 'Red Xmas'). But teenagers don't seem to change at all.

Let the Right One In turned out to be another take on adolescent encounters with bloodsuckers, but a completely different one, with the emphasis on the frigid gloominess of a Stockholm suburb. Whether you think it the better film is purely a matter of taste. But it turned out to be the more seriously-minded of the two movies that had a lot more gore. It's not the first time that an arthouse movie has approached the subject of vampires. But 'Let the Right One In' is a superior example and, writing horror as I do, it was nice to see a theatre full of intelligent people treating the whole subject with attentive respect. Something else always amazes me too, and both films prove it. Even decades down the line, with thousands of such efforts behind us, some inventive mind is always finding a brand new twist on the vampire theme. And I expect that, years from now, I'll still be noticing that.

I'm currently looking through the page proofs for Raine's Landing Book #2, 'Night of Demons,' by the way. Which means the Advanced Readers' Copies should be available during the next few months.

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