NOVEMBER 4, 2010
Well, it’s saying absolutely nothing of value, but Lost Boys: The Thirst is a marked improvement over its predecessor. I mean, they’d have to go out of their way to purposely make it worse, but it’s actually fairly enjoyable, more in line with the original, and too short (81 minutes with credits) to get riled up about anyway. But it also has Corey Feldman front and center, so if you thought he was best in small doses, you might want to steer clear.
See, not only does his tough guy voice start to grate after awhile (it was funny when he was a kid; as an adult it just makes him look kind of pathetic), but the movie doesn’t really have any characters to latch onto like Michael or even the kid in The Tribe. We learn early on that Alan Frog is now a vampire, but he (and Edgar) seem to be OK with it and he’s only in the movie for three scenes despite his 2nd billing. The “human in trouble” is a hot woman who wants Edgar to rescue her little brother from what they believe to be an “Alpha” vampire, but anyone who believes her story (or that she’s on Edgar’s side) is kind of a schmuck.
So it’s all Corey’s show, as he plays through the “refusal of the call” story beats in the first act, assembles weapons and a “team” in the 2nd, and finally fights some vampires in the 3rd, though there are a couple of brief moments sprinkled throughout. But here’s the thing – he’s supposedly this badass vampire hunter, but everything we see shows that he kind of sucks at it. Throughout the film, the other folks are the ones getting him out of a jam. And that would be fine (and funny), shades of Big Trouble In Little China, but at the end we learn that the whole “rescue” mission was a ruse to get him near the vampire, who wants to make him his personal bodyguard or something. Why? Guy can barely keep himself alive.
But oh well, it’s at least entertaining and pays more debt to the 1987 original. The vamps have a similar look, and they’ve dropped that inane Nightcrawler-ish speed ability from the last movie. We’re even treated to footage of the original, and there’s a subplot of sorts involving Sam’s prized Batman #14. And Alan rattles off the names of everyone who survived the original as a potential partner for Edgar, who then explains why each of them can’t make it (real reason being money – Feldman and Newlander are the only recognizable faces in the entire movie, in fact). There’s a scene where Feldman goes to get weapons from an old pal, and you can’t help but wonder if that was intended to be a cameo from a survivor of the first (or even second) film.
It also gets to mock Twilight, which, sure, is an easy target, but doesn’t make it any less funny. The chick who hires Edgar is the author of some romantic vampire books, and he expresses his disgust for them more than once. They also refer to the vampires as “emo bitches” or something along those lines. Supernatural did the same thing recently (and better), but it’s more fitting here, since the original Lost Boys occupied the same slot now owned by Twilight in terms of teenage/MTV fandom. Hakuna Matata or whatever.
And I liked that it was very straightforward, like the original. Even with the late-game twist, the plot is basically an A to B, one sentence affair – “Edgar goes to kill a new coven of vampires”. Alan the vampire isn’t in the movie enough to really have an impact on the plot, and even the attempts at drama (Edgar is being kicked out of his trailer, for example) are phased out after the first 15 minutes. Very much like an 80s movie in that way – it’s basically two acts stretched into three.
Another red mark though – they use “Cry Little Sister” (which, like in The Tribe, takes on new meaning considering a mildly incestuous plot point) of course, but it’s once again the cover by Aiden. *Sigh*. But while we’re on the subject, apparently Corey Haim (who gets a “in memory of” credit buried in between the songs and the legal language – very touching, guys) lived with original “Sister” singer G Tom Mac for a while after he became homeless. How f-ing depressing is THAT?
I learned this while reading up on the film on Wikipedia, which was my only source of behind the scenes info. Why? Because I rented the disc, and thus I do not have access to its bonus features, since Warner’s new thing is to provide “Rental” versions of their movies that are stripped of all their extras and even functionality. You can’t skip over the trailers at the top of the disc (forget about bypassing them entirely with the menu key), you can only fast forward through them – and there about 10 minutes’ worth. But you can’t just put it on mega fast-forward and be done quick, because there are (worthless) chapter breaks between most of the spots, so you’ll have to keep restarting your fast-forwarding again anyway. They also remove the scene selection page, for some reason. Doesn’t this sort of shit take MORE effort? Like, I can see not providing the extra features (and if the ones that were on The Tribe are any indication, I’m not missing anything anyway), but Scene Selection? What’s next? The subtitles? Widescreen transfers? They’re basically providing VHS tapes. Shit, I’m giving them ideas.
What say you?