The Forsaken (2001)
Sean is driving cross-country to deliver a vintage Mercedes and attend his sister's wedding when he picks up hitchhiker Nick, who just happens to be a vampire hunter, tracking down a group of youthful vampires who feed on unwary travelers. They run into Megan, who has been left for dead by the vampires. As they use her as a lure for the vampires, Sean becomes attracted to her. After Sean is infected with the vampire virus, he, Megan and Nick must race against time to kill the vampire leader Kit to stop Sean from becoming one of the undead.
A young man gets embroiled in a war against vampires.
- Tooling along the open road in a restored vintage Mercedes
convertible would be the ultimate vacation, don't you think? That's just
what Sean [Kerr Smith] is doing, with only a few caveats. One is that the car isn't
his. He's merely been hired to drive the Mercedes from California to
Florida. The second is that he has strict instructions not to pick up any
hitchhikers. No problem. Sean can handle it...that is, until he gets a
flat tire in Arizona, is forced to spend the night in a motel room
adjacent to some very noisy neighbors, loses his wallet, and picks up a
hitchhiker to help pay for gas. Nick [Brendan Fehr] seems like a nice guy, not a psycho
or anything. What Sean doesn't know is that Nick is a vampire hunter and
that Sean is about to get caught in his worst nightmare.
Sean and Nick make a pitstop at a roadside rest area. As they are getting back in their car, they are asked to help jumpstart the dead battery on a red Charger, which Sean recognizes as belonging to his noisy neighbors from the night before. Nick also recognizes them as the vampires Kit [Johnathon Schaech], Cym [Phina Oruche], and Teddy [Alexis Thorpe] and their renfield day-driver, Pen [Simon Rex]. Cym recognizes Nick as a vampire hunter but Kit decides to bide time before killing him.
Later that evening, after securing a room at the Palms Inn Motel, Sean and Nick get a bite to eat. While leaving the restaurant, they encounter a sick girl whom Nick takes back to the motel room and tosses in an icebath. When Megan [Izabella Miko] starts screaming, Nick holds her down while Sean gives her a shot of morphine, explaining that he knows what is happening to her...she has a blood disorder caused by a virus and the only way to cure it is to kill the original source of the infection. Unfortunately, while covering her mouth with his hand to stifle her screams, Sean gets bitten. The next morning, when Nick tells Sean that he's been bitten by a vampire, Sean doesn't believe it. Nick waltzes Sean out to the motel parking area where they find the red Charger with Pen sleeping on the hood. Nick knocks out Pen by hitting him with a shovel, finds his car keys, and tells Sean to open the trunk, whereupon Sean is immediately attacked by Teddy. After Nick whacks Teddy a few times with a shovel, Teddy bursts into flames in the sun.
Beginning to believe, Sean asks Nick how he knows about vampires or "the Forsaken and their feeders", as Nick refers to them. Nick shows the bite on his own arm, incurred about a year ago by a feeder at a party. Since then, he has been searching for the Forsaken who turned her. Meanwhile, he's been keeping himself from turning by gulping pills (antigens, amino acids, and proteins), developed to slow the HIV virus but also effective against the vampire virus...for a while. Nick makes Sean start taking them, too.
When they stop for some fried lizard at a diner in Texas, Sean asks about the Forsaken. What are they? The Forsaken are the first vampires, Nick explains, created during the seige at Antioch during the Great Crusade when the Turks slaughtered over 200 French knights. Only nine survived. The nine were visited that night by a demon who lurks around battlefields looking for souls to steal. He made a deal with eight of the knights, giving them life eternal. To seal the deal, the eight killed and drank the blood of the ninth. The next morning, however, they were so ashamed that they hid from the sun in a cave; the next night, they went their separate ways. And so, the Forsaken spread across the world. About 300 years later, one was killed during the Spanish Inquisition. Since then, three more have been destroyed, leaving four remaining. One is in Africa, one in Eastern Europe, and two in the U.S., including the vampire Kit. The virus is telegenetic, so those bitten remain in touch with their progenating Forsaken. When the progenator is destroyed, so is the link and the whole strain dies out. The problem is that the Forsaken can only be killed on hallowed ground, so Nick suggests that they head for this old Spanish mission some 60 miles away and wait there for Kit to find them.
Unfortunately, they never make it. That night, as Nick and Sean drive, the vampires catch up with them, ramming the back of the Mercedes with their Charger, taking potshots at the fenders and gas tank, and sideswiping the car doors. Each time Nick and Sean manage to elude them, the vampires catch up. Eventually, the Mercedes runs out of gas, and the vampire hunters are forced to stop at a house along the road. There is no gas to be had, but the owner, an elderly lady named Ina Hamm [Carrie Snodgrass], invites them in so that Megan can rest. During the night, Ina's house is attacked by Kit and Cym. Nick is happy to learn that Ina's house was built over an old graveyard. They're on hallowed ground, the best place to make a stand. In the melee that follows, Nick is shot and Sean's leg is broken, but they manage to shoot off Cym's head. Just as it looks like Kit is going to get Sean, the rising sun streams through the window, frying Kit. Sean and Megan are cured, but not Nick. It turns out that Kit wasn't the progenator of the feeder who bit him. Nick's search goes on.
Epilogue: It is three months later. Nick is hitching in Colorado when a red Charger stops for him. It is Sean, headed for Denver and hot on the trail of the other Forsaken. As the two drive off together, Nick wonders if the owner of the Mercedes was pissed about the car. "Oh, yeah!" Sean exclaims. [Original synopsis by bj_kuehl]