6.5/10
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116 user 249 critic

Byzantium (2012)

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Residents of a coastal town learn, with deathly consequences, the secret shared by the two mysterious women who have sought shelter at a local resort.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (play)
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Popularity
2,666 ( 141)
2 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Barry Cassin ...
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David Heap ...
Lap Dancing Client
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Gareth
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Wendy
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Jenny Kavanagh ...
Barmaid
Glenn Doherty ...
Steve
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Nadia
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Anya
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Storyline

Two mysterious women seek refuge in a run-down coastal resort. Clara meets lonely Noel, who provides shelter in his deserted guesthouse, Byzantium. Schoolgirl Eleanor befriends Frank and tells him their lethal secret. They were born 200 years ago and survive on human blood. As knowledge of their secret spreads, their past catches up on them with deathly consequence. Written by Production

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Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for bloody violence, sexual content and language | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

31 May 2013 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

A Vampire Story  »

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Box Office

Budget:

£8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$16,643, 30 June 2013, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$84,293, 4 August 2013
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 1816, Lord Byron, Percy and Mary Shelley, Claire Clairmont and John Polidori gathered at the Villa Diodati on Lake Geneva, Switzerland, in the fabled "haunted summer," which has been depicted in several movies. In a drug- and alcohol-induced frenzy, they engaged in a contest to see who could write the best ghost story. Mary Shelley produced "Frankenstein, or the Modern Prometheus." Byron began a vampire story but abandoned it out of boredom. Polidori picked it up and created "The Vampyre" (the forerunner to Bram Stoker's "Dracula"), whose title character, Ruthven, was modeled on Byron. Jonny Lee Miller portrayed the character named Ruthven in "Byzantium." Coincidentally, he portrayed the title role in the biopic "Byron." See more »

Goofs

After Frank falls from his bike he receives a laceration on his wrist which he tends to with a handkerchief, after Eleanor aids him by taking him back home he drops the rag on his porch which is now covered in blood. The pattern and the amount of blood surrounding the rag on the floor consistently changes between shots. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Eleanor: My story can never be told. I write it over and over, wherever we find shelter. I write of what I cannot speak: the truth. I write all I know of it, then I throw the pages to the wind. Maybe the birds can read it.
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Connections

References Dracula: Prince of Darkness (1966) See more »

Soundtracks

Be My Guest
Written by Gaitana, Kiwi Project
Performed by Gaitana
Licensed courtesy of Lavinia Music
Published by Lavinia Music
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Very flawed heroes.
30 October 2013 | by See all my reviews

'BYZANTIUM': Three and a Half Stars (Out of Five)

Another vampire tale from director Neil Jordan (who also directed the critically acclaimed 1994 film adaptation of Anne Rice's popular book 'INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE: THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES'). This movie is based on the play by Moira Buffini (she also wrote the screenplay) and tells the story of a mother and daughter vampire duo who have been on the run for 200 years. It stars Gemma Arterton and Saoirse Ronan as the mother and daughter vampires and co-stars Sam Riley, Johnny Lee Miller, Caleb Landry Jones and Daniel Mays. It's a pretty standard vampire film with some nice directing and decent acting.

Arterton plays Clara and Ronan plays her daughter Elanor (even though she's only eight years younger than Arterton). They've remained the same age for 200 years (when they became vampires, that can live in the sun) and need human blood to survive. They're constantly on the run from other vampires (as they've broken their 'brotherhood's laws). Clara has now befriended the shy Noel (Mays) and is running a brothel out of his recently inherited rundown coastal hotel (the Byzantium). Elanor has fallen for a young waiter named Frank (Jones) and has begun exposing her and her mother's secrets to him, through (what he thinks) is a beautiful fictional story.

The movie looks good and Arterton (like always) is gorgeous in it. She makes a great femme fatale vampire and Ronan is decently cast as her sheltered daughter. Jordan's directing is fitting and the story is interesting, if you like vampire movies (although I didn't like it that these vampires can survive in the sun). It's nice to see a vampire movie about a mother and daughter for a change and the romance and male characters are pretty minimal. It's also interesting to see sympathetic vampires, in a film, that still kill and prey on innocent people. Very flawed heroes to say the least. It's nowhere near as classic as Jordan's 'INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE' but it's still a decent vampire flick.

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