Near Dark is the definitive vampire road movie. It's the most realistic and non-traditional portrayal of vampires in my mind. They're cruising the country...you know, just bored. And wouldn't they be bored? I mean if you live forever, wouldn't you run out of things to do? They spend their time getting in and out of trouble. And that's all they do. I love it. The cast (Aliens anyone?) is top-notch. Adrien Pasdar is as underrated as they come. He plays our likable hero who gets involved with our gang of vamps by accident. Lance Henriksen, Bill Paxton, Jenette Goldstein (all from Aliens), Jenny Wright, and Joshua Miller are all perfectly cast as the nocturnal family. Miller, oddly enough, is Jason Patric's half brother and Near Dark was released just a few weeks after The Lost Boys. Henrikson is appropriately evil and Paxton's Severen character is highly quotable and memorable. Tim Thomerson and James Le Gros also put in an appearances. Eric Red's script is every bit as cool as his earlier road movie, The Hitcher. Kathryn Bigelow will go down in my book as having directed the best vampire flick that I can think of.
Note for genre buffs: The word vampire is never used in the film.