March 11, 2014

Only Lovers Left Alive: Movie Review

A film which ignores pop culture and brings out a truly remarkable story is always welcome here. Only Lovers Left Alive has potent dialogue, artfully crafted scenes and a provoking story. I'm just happy that these vampires don't sparkle.

Only Lovers Left Alive follows two vampires, Adam (Tom Hiddleston) and Eve (Tilda Swinton), as they cope with being vampires in a modern world. In this modern world they must deal with rock and roll, blood supplies from hospitals, sexism, racism, and brash relatives. Seems easy for two lovers who live in seclusion and calmness. It's only until Eve's sister, Ava (Mia Wasikowska) visits, when things start falling apart. 

The film is very minimal, with scenes taking place in Adam's industrialized house in Detroit or Tilda's metro pad in Tangiers. It makes great as the audience gets to experience the idyllic solitude and darkness these vampires have lived in for hundreds of years. More so, the film explores different mindsets of how vampires have reacted to a technologically growing world. Adam and Eve act like the vampiric, arrogant hipsters they show complete animosity for. So much hatred, that they eventually stop caring about the humans and find them to be nothing more than zombies running amok. Adam has become a large influence on rock and roll legends, all the while helping in the advancement of science. He has his moments of pondering about the destruction that humans have released on themselves and the disgusting state of the modern world. Eve carries on her life at the beginning of the film in Tangiers where she keeps in contact with other vampires. Primarily, Christopher Marlowe (John Hurt) who claims to have penned most of Shakespeare's works. Ava is the only vampire seemingly uninspired by the world around her. However, her inspiration lies within the time frame she has to live. Believing that her life will eventually end in agony, she lives every moment reckless.

Each scene is crafted with idiosyncratic excellence. There's a quirkiness in the dialogue and humor that brings freshness and light into such dim sets and morbidly induced characters. The vampires and humans contrast perfectly, even as these are two different beings with certain mannerisms that are noticed instantaneously. Adam and Eve are so smooth with their words, their motions, and their lives. The humans that interact with the two lovers are so fidgety, unhinged and have a certain anxiety about them. Ava bridges that gap, acting like a human-vampire hybrid on the verge of self-annihilation. A crown example of her corruption due to human influence.

Only Lovers Left Alive is a down-to-earth tale about two lovers who just happen to be vampires living in the modern world. The minimal sets, poetic characters, and peculiar dialogue are a sight for sore eyes from the horrifyingly over-popularized vampire films audiences are used to seeing these days.  

Good Qualities: A very visceral, thought-induced journey through the lives of modern vampires - that don't sparkle.
Bad Qualities:  A different vampire story that people won't be used to.

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