Friday, August 20, 2010

Repo-messes & Vampire-likenesses

Science Fiction is usually smart-sounding-fluff. It has the power to really sneak deep messages into the public conscience, but it is usually fluff. The problem is that, ever since Rod Sterling, it tends to be fluff trying to sound deep.

Repo Men (2010) is one such mess. It tries hard to deliver a message: a job is not just a job; it is a part of who you are. The first problem is that message in and of itself. It is not deep. It is kind of dumb, especially the way the movie tries to play it. Add to that, the obligatory “mess with your mind ending” that is not well executed and far from original and you have a nice waste of two hours.

Daybreakers (2010) started out with a much better premise. It takes the vampire mythos and (as is way too fashionable today) turns it on its head. In Daybreakers, the whole world (nearly) has turned vampire. It is not a story where vampirism represents pure evil, but rather vampirism represents humanity—exposing the evil that we all possess to one degree or another.

Beyond that basic message, there are other things this movie has going for it. The production values are good. The story is competent. There are even interesting side aspects to the story. For instance, if you want to stop being a vampire you have to be willing to die. Blood also plays a role in fixing the problem. The story is not quite precise enough to draw parallels between the Christian worldview with its understanding of sacrifice and Christ’s blood, but it is still a fun idea to explore. Almost interesting enough to make the movie recommendable. Almost.

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