Welcome to A-Z Movie Reviews. Every Sunday, for the next several months, I will be posting a review of a film in my home movie collection. How it works is, I will be reviewing movies in alphabetical order until I get to the letter Z (Yes, I do have a film that ends in Z). Now I realize there are many ways to alphabetize a film collection, but this is mine so don’t judge me. This is simply for fun.
The first memory I have of watching Interview With The Vampire, was when I was a kid. Yeah, you heard that right. I was ten years old and I had spent the night at my aunts house. I remember waking up early in the morning and my cousins had the movie on. I was immediately intrigued by it and not scared at all. That was when I fell in love with all things vampire.
What it’s about:
Born as an 18th-century lord, Louis (Brad Pitt) is now a bicentennial vampire, telling his story to an eager biographer (Christian Slater). Suicidal after the death of his family, he meets Lestat (Tom Cruise), a vampire who persuades him to choose immortality over death and become his companion. Eventually, gentle Louis resolves to leave his violent maker, but Lestat guilts him into staying by turning a young girl (Kirsten Dunst) — whose addition to the “family” breeds even more conflict.
I’m pretty sure people already know this but if you don’t, Interview With The Vampire is based on the book by Anne Rice from her popular Vampire Chronicles series. In my opinion, this is one of the best book to screen adaptations of all time. The Director Neil Jordan did a phenomenal job of bringing her story to life and there are so many things I love about it.
Like I said earlier, the first time I watched Interview With The Vampire I was only ten so naturally, I couldn’t necessarily have the same appreciation for it as I do now. When I watched it again, I was a teenager and once I realized it was based on a book, I had to read it. Vampires have always been interesting to me but I had never read a book or seen a film like this one that involved sitting down with, and interviewing a vampire about his life.
I thought it was such a cool premise. I also loved that the story explored the level of torment Louis experienced after becoming a vampire because it’s not something we see all the time. Louis (Pitt) is on a constant battle with himself. He is now a vampire but he wants to retain the humanity he once had. When Lestat (Cruise) turned him, he didn’t realize just how big the cost was.
The casting for Interview With The Vampire was perfect and everyone did an amazing job of portraying their characters.
Brad Pitt was the best Louis ever, and I could not imagine anyone else playing him. His ability to convey all of the sorrow he was dealing with, as well as his struggle to maintain some semblance of humanity despite being a vampire was incredible. He brought so many layers to his character because he had a different level of pain for every moment and it showed.
From his sadness over taking the lives of innocent people, to his pain over losing Claudia, he nailed it. Of course he was good at bringing out the vampy scary side when he needed to, particularly in one of my favorite moments when he gets his revenge on Santiago (Stephen Rea) and his crew for what they did to Claudia.
Tom Cruise was a great Lestat. He’s another one who was as I pictured. Lestat is a complex character because he has this attitude of acting like he doesn’t care about anything, or anyone when he actually does. Before he turned Louis, he was walking around lonely. Louis provided companionship that he so desperately craved. I think what added to that feeling was the fact that Lestat turned Louis, so in a way he became his family. In Lestat’s mind, Louis needed him but in all honesty, it was Lestat who needed Louis.
He also had his vicious moments as well. Lestat did a lot of evil things and if not for Louis, he probably would have done more. Louis kept Lestat grounded to an extent and made him think about some of the things he was doing, Tom was good at showing that.
Kirsten Dunst was only 12 years old when she played Claudia and she was incredibly good. Claudia is another complex character because she gets turned when she’s a child. Throughout the film we watch the transition of her going from an innocent little girl to a woman. She is stuck forever in a child’s body but she has an adult mind. Kirsten was able to showcase those moments so well and there was a totally different way about how she carried herself when Claudia got older.
I absolutely love the cinematography in this film. You can feel every time period that is shown throughout. Each location is a character that only adds to the story. I love the colors used as well. There’s a lot of blue and gold used on Louis, Lestat, and Claudia’s wardrobe We don’t actually see any red until Armand (Antonio Banderas) is introduced when Louis and Claudia go to watch his show in Paris.
The last thing I have to talk about is the vampires. Now I know I kind of did that earlier when I talked about the cast but that was mainly about their characters. This is solely focused on the type of vampires they are. Anne Rice’s vampires are vampires. They have fangs, and they don’t sparkle in sunlight.
Don’t get me wrong, I love Twilight however, the kind of vampires Anne Rice created are the ones we think of most when the topic up vampires comes up. Her vampires are reminiscent of the ones from many years before like Dracula and Barnabas Collins. Getting shows and movies with vampires like this is a rarity these days and I wish there were more around.
- Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise, and Antonio Banderas are hot AF as vampires.
- Every time Louis tells his slaves they are all free men as he burns his house down, I can’t help but think that they wouldn’t be able to just walk freely without some proof of that freedom.
- Lestat’s a vampire so why couldn’t he tell that the twins were dead? You would think he would notice their hearts weren’t beating, right?
- It’s such a bummer that Madeline was literally killed right after becoming a vampire. What a waste.
- Santiago (Stephen Rea) is a dick.
- Louis’s revenge scene will always be EPIC.
Will you see this classic again or will you enjoy it for the first time? Feel free to share with us in the comments below!
Interview With The Vampire is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.