Sunday, July 1, 2012

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (2012)

Seen: In 2D at the Somerville Theatre in Davis Square.

I knew it would be stupid, but I want to support Timur Bekmambetov because I love the Night Watch/Day Watch films and I think he's a cool director. BUT FOR SOME REASON he's just hanging out in America making dumb action films instead of finishing the trilogy in Russia. It really gets my goat. Anyway. Based on the book of the same name, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is exactly what its title suggests. As a boy our 16th president (Benjamin Walker) witnesses the death of his mother by a bloodsucking vampire, and vows revenge. He's trained by mysterious vampire hunter Henry (Dominic Cooper), studying law by day and eradicating evil by night. He rises to the presidency, hoping to strike down slavery, and when the Civil War begins he finds he must contend with hordes of Southern vampires fighting for the Confederacy.

Ok the thing about this movie is that it's super dumb, obviously, and it looks like shit, and the screenplay is weak, but I can't pretend I didn't have a good time. I laughed a good amount, though I'm not always sure if I was laughing with the film or at it, and the action sequences are pretty badass when the low-quality CGI isn't too distracting. A tall dude in a nice coat swinging around a huge ax and bloodily beheading vampires- I'm pretty easy to please. Plus the cast is fantastic, and more people I dug kept popping up. Jimmi Simpson! Anthony Mackie! Mary Elizabeth Winstead! Rufus Sewell! And even a tiny appearance from Alan Tudyck as Stephen Douglas, how nice. There are various semi-historical figures and occurrences peppered throughout to give audiences a wink of recognition, and while it's not as clever as it could be, it's appropriately silly and decidedly low-brow. If only it didn't look so bad, and if only the script was stronger. Oh well.


Pair This Movie With: Oh I don't know, maybe another movie with historically inaccurate shenanigans, like Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure.

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