Daybreakers | The Spierig Brothers, 2010
There was a time when vampires were the stuff of nightmares. They were scary, not afraid to kill, yet sometimes their stories were tragic. In those tragedies, a girl was involved most of the time, yet they managed to give people of all ages bad dreams. However, thanks to those books about sexual abstinence disguised as vampire stories, and the films that spawned from them, the vampires has become something cute; something every girls wants, and that’s not the way its supposed to be. If Bram Stoker was alive to witness what has happened to the vampire, he would weep. However, every once in a while a story like Daybreakers comes along where vampires are not emo kids with greasy hair who have grudges against pedophile wolves. This alone may be the reason why my opinion of it is rather high, but besides that, it is something that Twilight can never be: fun and thought provoking.
Daybreakers takes place in a future where the human race is nearly extinct and the world is ruled by vampires. Since the humans are getting harder to find, the company that farms blood is on the verge of going broke, so they are fast at work at finding a substitute. The person in charge of this is Edward Dalton (Ethan Hawke), a person who wants to find the substitute to prevent humans from going extinct, maybe even find a cure. Also, because human blood is becoming scarse, vampire are turning into horrible creatures who hunt even their own kind. One day, he find a group of humans that say that they have found a cure for vampires, so now Edward must betray his own kind to save the future of life on the planet.
I’m going to start by pointing out my biggest problem with the movie. The premise is very interesting and could have made a classic movie, however the script was not well thought out and it was not executed properly, so there were some parts that were supposed to be shocking or thrilling, but they ended up being silly. Most of these involve Willem Defoe, who is great, but his character ends up functioning as comedy relief. Besides that, I enjoyed it very much, especially the fact that it is more of an action movie rather than horror, but it still has plenty of gore.
The other characters are just your typical action movie characters. You have the hero, the tough-as-nails female, the crazy guy who ends up being right, the rebel family member, the greedy business man, the girl with daddy issues, etc. But the actors that are assigned do the best they can with each role, whether it is playing them seriously or chewing scenery. Besides that, the art direction, cinematography, and make-up are top notch and enhance the fascinating story (the CGI is not very good, but at least it is not used a lot).
Daybreakers gets by on its premise, production values, and good performances. It could have had a better script, but as it is, it is a fun movie to watch.