After moving to a new town, two brothers discover that the area is a haven for vampires.After moving to a new town, two brothers discover that the area is a haven for vampires.After moving to a new town, two brothers discover that the area is a haven for vampires.
"Lost Boys" was one of the first, and in my opinion best, movies to successfully bridge horror with adventure, comedy, and apologetically 80s fashion sense. It's as if you took The Exorcist and threw it in a blender with Labyrinth, Weird Science, and Duran Duran's wardrobe closet.
Speaking (not) of Duran Duran, an iconic 80s band that's unfortunately missing from the soundtrack's lineup, there's quite an assembly of awesome 80s bands like INXS ("Good Times", "Laying Down the Law"), Echo & the Bunnymen (covering The Doors "People Are Strange"), Aerosmith & Run DMC ("Walk This Way"), Lou Gramm from Foreigner ("Lost in the Shadows") and Roger Daltrey from The Who (covering Elton John's "Don't Let the Sun Go Down On Me"). This flick has it all.
The plot is another huge innovation, almost a quarter century before we'd see the young GQ vampires in the Twilight series, here we have probably the first time in vampire film history where vampires are young good looking teens & tweens, as opposed to the creepy, twisted Nosferatu image that started it all. This is especially effective because the transformation from teen heartthrobs to terrifying bloodthirsty maniacs is a powerful contrast that plays upon our very intrigue with the dark inherent sexiness of vampirism. And call me crazy, but their pre-goth look has aged extremely well. Bear in mind, most of the people in the theater watching this movie in 1987 were wearing parachute pants and pastel colored Izod golf shirts with the stupid collar turned up. I plead the 5th on that.
One quick note on the look of the vampires. Notice how their fangs are done... VERY creepy. Unlike the traditional wolf-like "Dracula" vampire who has sharp canine teeth (3rd pair from center), and unlike the "Nosferatu" rat-faced vampire with incisor fangs (center pair), these creatures of the night are sporting elongated bicuspids (2nd pair from center). I don't know why but this freaked the heck out of me when I was a kid and it still does. Maybe it's because, unlike wolves & rats, there is no natural animal who has sharp bicuspids so the vision is especially "unnatural". Who knows.
I'm going to return to an earlier point regarding the crossover between horror, adventure & comedy for a minute. This cannot be overstated. In the bonus interviews, the director talks about how the producers and corporate suits were confused if not terrified at the concept. But luckily the artists' vision prevailed, owing a lot to improvised comedy on the set (the "Frog brothers" absolutely stole the show). Again, why is this significant? Because just when you think the movie might be bordering on melodramatic cheese, it makes fun of itself in a very overt way, and you realize that even if you don't buy the outlandish concept of, say, a bunch of high school kids becoming world class vampires, that's OK. Because the filmmakers don't necessarily buy it either, and that's why the movie is peppered with some outrageously awesome lines like: "My own brother, a goddam, sh!t-sucking vampire. You wait 'till mom finds out, buddy!" So really, if these examples haven't been enough I'll spell it out. "Lost Boys" was a groundbreaking film in its look, its sound, its attitude and yes, even its story which has a very nice surprise twist or two. Other 80s flicks like "Fright Night" and "Vamp" did admirably well and are worth seeing, but I have to say "The Lost Boys" is the one that got everything right.
Watch this movie if you're in the mood for a good horror flick, or a good adventure, or a good comedy, or if you want to hear some cool tunes, or if you're running low on ideas for the next Halloween party. Just don't drink the blood punch. (Watch the movie and you'll see what I mean)
- Feb 20, 2017