Buffy Summers has the lifestyle any young woman could want. Cheerleading, dating the captain of the basketball team, and copious amounts of time spent shopping with friends. She had no idea of her true calling until a mysterious man named Merrick approached her and told her that she is the Slayer; one woman called to defend the world from vampires. Reluctant to concede to the fact, Buffy soon learns that Merrick speaks the truth and so begins to take her new life seriously while trying to maintain the sense of normality her life had once been. With her best friends slowly abandoning her, Buffy finds solace in the town outcast, Pike, who knows very well the terrors that have arisen. Together, they combat the forces of the old and powerful vampire, Lothos, who has his eyes set on Buffy.Written by
Buffy the vampire slayer is not a terrific film. It is not the type of cinema that leaves you breathless and reeling, nor is it the type of cinema that idles at first creeps through your dreams with pervasive intensity. No, this is Time Capsule Cinema, a voyage to the neon panoply of early 90's California in the self described "Lite Age."
Kristy Swanson is lovely as the wise cracking eponymous star, nicely alternating between clinical sarcasm and tenderness in what is, essentially, a limited role. Donald Sutherland and Rutger Howard are hilarious as ancient figures who just happen to be hip to the slangy nature of late 20th century teen dialog. Luke Perry, David Arquette and Hillary Swank (far from her best role, but my favorite film of hers!) and a few others are fine as the assemblage of irreverent teenagers, eye rolling to the max! A highlight of the film is Stephen Root, playing the principal, regaling Buffy with a cautionary tale of his experiences with LSD in the 60's..."I was at a Doobie Brothers concert..."
Oh, and by the way, that's PEE WEE FREAKIN HERMAN as the fanged creep Lefty. Boy he got outta jail just soon enough. Paul Ruebens is phenomenal, of course, and it may be his presence that allows me to shamelessly enjoy the rest of the film through my rose colored glasses of guilty nostalgia!
Too many serious films reek of Los Angeles- you can almost taste the soy burgers and smog- when they take place elsewhere. This makes it difficult to differentiate the cast of actors from the characters they are paid to represent. This film revels in LA's lack of charm and sophistication. I half expected an In-N-Out Burger commercial to pop up half way through. Not enough comedies are as unselfconscious as this one, content to poke fun at themselves till the vampires come home!
7*/10 CAMPY FUN
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