George Romero does for vampires what he has already done to zombies - an intense and realistic treatment that follows the exploits of Martin, who claims to be 84 years old, and who certainly drinks human blood. The boy arrives in Pittsburgh to stay with his cousin, who promises to save Martin's soul and destroy him once he is finished, but Martin's loneliness finds other means of release.Written by
David Carroll <firstname.lastname@example.org>
During DVD commentary star John Amplas said that Tony Buba's grandmother was also living at the house where the film was shot. One day after shooting she saw one of the sinks full of fake blood and became very upset, not because of the mess but because she thought it was real blood and believed bodily harm had came to John Amplas. See more »
After the encounter in his bedroom with Martin, Tada Cuda is seen walking to his store with another man. In the next cut in front of the door the man is not there. See more »
"martin" is one of the most intelligent, restrained, subtle and yet effective horror films i've ever seen. romero really pulls it off with this radical variation on the traditional vampire theme. martin is a young boy who is either mentally ill or an ancient victim of that terrible disease known as vampirism, and what i love about it is that romero deliberately makes it ambiguous. most people who have seen this movie simply assume that martin's flashbacks are not flashbacks at all, but deranged fantasies or the delusions of a mentally abnormal individual. i believe this is clearly a mistake, and that either position is equally legitimate. in any case, as regards the need for blood, it does not really matter if martin is a mythical monster or a deranged sicko, since either way he takes many lives by the end of this film. he is not, however, a monster, and we even get the impression that this is a very sensitive, sweet, introverted kid who is suffering from either a pathological mental disorder or something even more ominous. remember how horrible it was being a teenager? well, don't be so quick to pity yourself;martin has to deal with all the insecurities of a young kid on top of being aware that he may be an ancient vampire, doomed to solitude and isolation by his need for the nourishment of blood and his oddly inverted disposition. this is actually one of the only successful and truly effective attempts at a blend of horror and satire that i've ever seen, although i would still be slow to encourage directors to dabble in that confused genre, since the result is usually an ineffectual, mediocre movie. the atmosphere and surreal scenes in this one are at times genuinely touching, because they reveal martin's insatiable lust for blood but at the same time cause us to feel pity for him because he has (or he believes) that he has been persecuted by the uncomprehending majority for centuries. he has an affair with a somewhat pathetic and lonely middle aged neighbor who finally seduces him successfully after many failed attempts, and this ultimately leads to his downfall in an ironic twist which should not be told to the viewer in advance, although the movie would still be more than worth watching even if he or she did know. this little known gem is also unusually substantive for a horror film, as all of romero's are, and in this one he seems to be taking shots at our ludicrous superstitions and assumption that man is the and all and be all of all things, and so believes he is attacked by supernatural evil when in reality his beliefs are absurd and entirely unfounded. a true ego deflation and a genuinely touching horror movie, "martin" is a must for lovers of film.
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