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Buffy the vampire slayer is not a terrific film. It is not the type of
cinema that leaves you breathless and reeling, nor is it the type of
cinema that idles at first creeps through your dreams with pervasive
intensity. No, this is Time Capsule Cinema, a voyage to the neon
panoply of early 90's California in the self described "Lite Age."
Kristy Swanson is lovely as the wise cracking eponymous star, nicely alternating between clinical sarcasm and tenderness in what is, essentially, a limited role. Donald Sutherland and Rutger Howard are hilarious as ancient figures who just happen to be hip to the slangy nature of late 20th century teen dialog. Luke Perry, David Arquette and Hillary Swank (far from her best role, but my favorite film of hers!) and a few others are fine as the assemblage of irreverent teenagers, eye rolling to the max! A highlight of the film is Stephen Root, playing the principal, regaling Buffy with a cautionary tale of his experiences with LSD in the 60's..."I was at a Doobie Brothers concert..."
Oh, and by the way, that's PEE WEE FREAKIN HERMAN as the fanged creep Lefty. Boy he got outta jail just soon enough. Paul Ruebens is phenomenal, of course, and it may be his presence that allows me to shamelessly enjoy the rest of the film through my rose colored glasses of guilty nostalgia!
Too many serious films reek of Los Angeles- you can almost taste the soy burgers and smog- when they take place elsewhere. This makes it difficult to differentiate the cast of actors from the characters they are paid to represent. This film revels in LA's lack of charm and sophistication. I half expected an In-N-Out Burger commercial to pop up half way through. Not enough comedies are as unselfconscious as this one, content to poke fun at themselves till the vampires come home!
7*/10 CAMPY FUN
First off I have to say my review of this movie may be somewhat coloured by
my adoration of the television series. Despite sharing a few superficial
elements - a character called Buffy who slays vampires and who has a watcher
- the two are quite distinctive (even if Joss Whedon penned them
"Buffy" here is very much played with a tongue-in-cheek. It's Clueless meets Dracula. Buffy and her cohorts are shallower than an evaporated puddle and Buffy can only learn to grow up when heaped with the responsibility of being the Chosen One, destined to slay vampires. The vampires in question are just people with white faces played up in quite a camp manner and bare little resemblance to the sharp, wise, smart vampires favored by both the TV series and other movies.
There's no acting of any note and the plot is wet-paper thin. The direction isn't memorable... so what stops the movie getting a 0 or a 1? The humour. The movie is played for laughs, taking a bit of a dig at pop culture and vampire lore. There's some great lines in it - particularly the "kill him A LOT!" line. Watch the coach at the basketball game for similar humour, and there is an unforgettable vampire staking towards the movie end that's very amusing.
The movie looks like it was shot on a shoe-string budget (adding to the camp tongue-in-cheek parody feel) and has none of the production values we'd see Whedon employ later on. What it does have is a sometimes very amusing line in black humour offset somewhat by an irritating need to follow the "Clueless" mould of teenagers (which was, admittedly, the trend at the time). It's not an awfully bad movie but it's not really all that good. In the end it's a 5.5/10 from me.
I can't believe other reviewers called this moving "boring and idiotic". Um...hello...what were they expecting, a serious, contemplative piece of cinema? It's completely silly, as it's supposed to be. If it wasn't good, would it have inspired a (far inferior, in my opinion) television spin off? Watch it with no expectations. You'll be impressed. Kirsty Swanson does that Alicia Silverstone in "Clueless" thing perfectly. My friends and I have made it a ritual to watch this movie every couple months with a bottle of wine and a big bowl of popcorn. Nothing better on a rainy night. Don't listen to the bozos who said this isn't worth seeing. It's hilarious, trust me.
I loved this movie. I'd seen it waaaaay before the series was a twinkle
anyone's eye. This film is built for total entertainment and some of the
dialog is the best around just because it is so ridiculous.
When the series started, I couldn't believe it was soo dark and brooding. I figured I'd never watch it because it was not faithful to the movie. Well, I did start watching it and now I can say I get great satisfaction out of both Buffy entities. For those of you who are avid (or rabid) viewers of the series and are thinking about watching the movie beware that it is absolutely NOTHING like the series. If you are hoping for something that is like the TV series, you are bound for disappointment. Just let go of your expectations and you will find lots of humor and pleasantness in Buffy (the movie).
And remember....Pike's not a name....it's a fish.
This is a terribly fun movie. The acting is deliberately over the top and does quite well. Everyone from Swanson to Perry to Reubens to Stephen Root does an excellent job. I don't understand people who didn't like this - it's simply fun.
This is one of my favorite movies. It's full of extremely clever
one-liners that I never get tired of. "Oh, yeah? Clap!" The main
character acts like a brainless bimbo but, if you pay attention, the
movie gives you subtle hints she's a lot smarter than she lets on.
Acting brainless is a little social camouflage so she fits in with her
It's fun to watch everyone playing it way over the top: Rutger Hauer is the perfect creepy head vampire, Paul Reubens seems to relish his role as the main vampire henchman, and Donald Sutherland delivers yet another quirky performance in a career full of quirky performances.
Oh, and watch for a fairly obvious continuity error about, maybe, halfway through.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer is an instant campy classic. Of course, it does
measure up to the series that followed-- to compare them would be like
comparing apples and oranges. The movie was funny and had a lot of
comedy, while the series is dark and contains dark humor.
Luke Perry and Kristy Swanson rock as a couple and Donald Sutherland is classic in his role as "Merrick". Buffy-the movie- makes us all wish we were vampire slayers with special strength and abilities.
The Chronicler's Caves, home of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
I am a big fan of all movies that portray ditzy blonds as the heroes, showing the world just how much we can do! I really enjoyed Buffy, especially since I am not a big horror fan and this movie lightened the scare with humor! I think that Kristy Swanson is a great heroine for bumbling blonds! She is a modern day Jean Arthur!
underrated action/comedy: witty, intelligent, nuanced humor in the writing and acting. Lest people forget, this was an early entry in the no-longer-waiting-for-her-prince, newly-empowered, women-who-can-kick-butt genre ....full of satire and irony for the non-literal viewer.....truly delightful!
I'm not at all suprised that so many people hated this movie. I on the
otherhand really enjoyed it. It isn't a masterpeice, but it's fun. I
absolutely adore Kristy Swanson. She is a very beautiful & talented actress.
Although I really like Sarah Michelle Geller Kristy makes a better Buffy,
hands down. I loved the movie so much that I bought it. It usually gets me a
little energetic so I do my workouts while it's on. The soundtrack is
totally fitting for the movie. Every song was great. I gave this movie a 10.
When your having a girls night, & you want a light comedy, not to serious,
this is the right movie.
Bottom line: At least try it, you might like it!
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