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Deep-thinking vampire searches for meaning in eternal life
Aquillyne31 January 2005
'Interview with the Vampire' is an atmospheric, highly gripping "film involving vampires" - not a "vampire movie". Whilst the latter would describe a film that focuses on its vampirism and might be judged on the sharpness of its fangs, this "film involving vampires" has all the merits of the very best cinema, and at its core is nothing but a fantastic story carried by compelling, believable characters.

For those who may not be able to overlook the vampiric content, look again. The vampirism herein is a plot device, a way of presenting characters who cannot die or age or be harmed, so that the philosophical questions of life itself can be explored. But equally, for those who will be interested in the vampiric content, this film presents a rich mythology backed by a trilogy of books, which fleshes out the concept of the vampire in a much deeper way than any other production.

Every person has their own world view, their own way of living and thinking. People can be brooding, contemplative, cautious, reasonable, carefree, hedonistic, optimistic, emotional - and every shade in between. But these are all world-views based on the knowledge that life is short. What would happen if told their lives would never end? Who would be happiest? What would they do? How would eternal life affect each person? And most importantly, if a way of living was bringing meaning to a person's life, would that still work once life was infinite? All of these questions help us explore philosophical ideas as old as time, and that exploration is the focus of this film.

The story is propelled by vampires Louis (Pitt) and Lestat (Cruise), each representing a different take on life. Whilst Louis, who began as a depressive wanting to die, thinks of eternity as an extended curse; Lestat, who seems to live every second as it comes, barely even considers the future three minutes hence. Told from Louis' viewpoint as he struggles to find some meaning in a life he knows will never end, we are taken on a ride across the centuries, as Louis' outlook and happiness undulate whilst characters and relationships come and go.

Alongside Louis' turmoil in coming to terms with his (now eternal) life, a secondary theme is explored, which is the notion of survival. Even though Louis is clearly dissatisfied with life, he never attempts to end it, despite this option being open to him. In other words, surviving, in and of itself, was a motivation that outdid any other. Most importantly, survival outdoes Louis' trouble over the fact that his only source of nourishment is now the blood of living animals, preferably humans. Despite attempting abstinence, and then attempting to drink only the blood of rodents, this basic feeding instinct proves too much for Louis. And yet, as Lestat points out, what is the problem? The fittest always survives, and whoever is lower down the food-chain will be eaten. Humans eat animals, and vampires eat humans - it's all natural. But nonetheless, are there moral limits? Even if you have to kill a human, is there a more moral way to do it? "Monstrous," Louis exclaims, as he watches a group of vampires murder a defenceless girl. Yet might survival require the forgetting of moral consciousness, like Lestat?

'Interview with the Vampire' explores all of these deep, important issues whilst delivering an incredibly powerful story populated by charismatic characters, haunting and diverse settings and immortal dialogue. Gripping from start to finish, you will be enamoured at the vampire-world opened up to you; and by the end, you are left wondering what choice you would have made, given the one that Lestat never had...
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Tom Cruise IS Lestat
smatysia26 December 1999
I, like Anne Rice, was initially dismayed that Tom Cruise had been cast as Lestat. But when I saw the film, I had to admit that he absolutely nailed the role. I had always thought of Cruise as a pretty boy, and not really a serious actor, especially since he failed in his attempt at a Streepian accent in "Far and Away". However, he perfectly portrayed Lestat for what he is, a monster with a monstrous ego. I think that this was the first film I had seen with Brad Pitt, followed shortly by "Legends of the Fall" so to me his acting credentials were impeccable, in spite of my female friends swooning over him. The rest of the cast was excellent as well, with the only minor quibble that Antonio Banderas was too old for the part of Armand. Kirsten Dunst was adorably evil. The cinematography was beautiful, considering that almost all of the film (of course) takes place at night. One note on the supposed "homo-eroticism" in the film. I have the advantage, having read Rice's books, so here is the deal on that. In Rice's world, the vampires are absolutely sexless. Therefore, gender has no meaning to them. When a vampire loves another, or a mortal, it is truly from the heart, as no sexuality of any kind ever enters into it. The only thing to them that is close, is the kill. Killing is highly "erotic" to vampires. However, this too is really asexual, and so again, gender has no bearing on the eroticism of the kill. I think that some elements of this, which apparently came across as homo-eroticism, were included in the screenplay just to emphasize how different, how non-human, that vampires are.
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Obviously misunderstood
Ken-426 September 1999
Someone said that this movie was too cerebral for horror fans who live for drivel like "From Dusk 'Till Dawn", and too much of a horror movie for people who look (or at least pretend to look) for meaning in movies -- pseudo-intellectuals. That person couldn't have been more correct. I'm not a horror fan, I'm not an Anne Rice fan...I'm not even fond of Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, and Antonio Banderas. But Interview With a Vampire was a movie that excelled my expectations.

I refused to see this film for 3 years because I believed it would be what I perceived it to be: glitzy Hollywood garbage geared toward adolescent girls with posters of the 3 main actors all over their walls. I finally broke down and rented it, and I was astonished by the incredible performances delivered, the thrilling dialogue and the way it was delivered by the actors, the scenery, the plot, the score...everything. I never thought that Brad Pitt or Tom Cruise could act, but their performances made their unbelievable characters a reality. However, the true star of the film was Kirsten Dunst. At 12 years old, this girl was able to hold her own against her co-stars, and often stole the scene (particularly the incident in which Claudia tries to cut her hair and subsequently Lestat discovers the corpse in her bed.)

You don't want to look for the meaning of life in this movie. It's a story. The plot is basically the history of a vampire's life, and I don't understand why people are compelled to trash a movie because of its simplicity. Look at the title. That's all it is, and if you expect more you're setting yourself up for disappointment. It's not the deepest of movies, that's why it should be enjoyed for the intense dialogue and the great production that went into it. Others trash the movie because of its homoerotic undertones. This aspect is so fleeting that it's ridiculous to dwell on it, and if you dwell on such an insignificant aspect of the movie then you were obviously looking for something to bother you. One additional thing: to even suggest that the violence in this film could be responsible for incidents such as the Columbine High School killings is beyond moronic.

This isn't the greatest movie that has ever been made, it's certainly not a complex analysis of life, or a parable with a moral dictating the enjoyment of life. It's a brilliantly produced gothic tale of a vampire, nothing more and nothing less. In respect to the book, I've never read it and I don't particularly care to read it. But for all of you who have been complaining about the movie not living up to the novel, here's a clue that might prove useful in the future: the book is ALWAYS better than the film. Don't waste your time complaining about something that is understood.
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Romantic, melancholy and beautiful - a vampire epic for the new millennium
Libretio10 June 2005

Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Sound formats: Dolby Digital / SDDS

17th century New Orleans: The relationship between an ancient vampire (Tom Cruise) and his bloodsucking protegé (Brad Pitt) is tested to destruction by a young girl (Kirsten Dunst) who challenges their established dynamic, leading to betrayal and murder.

A doom-laden meditation on life and death and the nature of grief, based on Anne Rice's bestselling novel (written as a response to the death of her beloved daughter), and featuring two of contemporary Hollywood's most recognizable stars (both astonishingly beautiful here) as vampire and willing victim, remaining eternally young as the world evolves around them. Cruise plays a seasoned killer who revels in bloodthirsty excess, while Pitt is a conscientious objector who balks at the prospect of drinking human blood, until Cruise creates a 'companion' for Pitt in the shape of a little girl (Dunst) who refuses to grow old gracefully, with tragic consequences.

Scored with melancholy grace by composer Elliot Goldenthal, and beautifully designed and photographed (by Dante Ferretti and Philippe Rousselot, respectively), the film is epic in concept and execution, spanning the social upheavals of 17th and 18th century America and the horrors of 19th century Europe, where a nest of ancient vampires (led by scene-stealer Antonio Banderas and a miscast Stephen Rea) wreak terrible revenge on those who transgress against vampire lore. But, for all its spectacle, director Neil Jordan (THE COMPANY OF WOLVES) - working from a script credited to Rice herself - maintains a leisurely pace and never loses sight of the characters. The movie contains some beautiful, transcendent passages, including a breathtaking transition from 19th century Europe to modern day America via the introduction of motion pictures (everything from SUNRISE: A SONG OF TWO HUMANS to GONE WITH THE WIND and SUPERMAN!), and an incredibly moving sequence in which a once-proud vampire is discovered in exile, laid low by his own vanity.

The film's delicate tone is upset by a trick ending which comes completely out of left-field, though Jordan has denied any suggestion of studio interference. And, as with the novel, the homoerotic undercurrent is mere window-dressing, an unconsummated tease which the filmmakers (and Rice herself) refuse to explore in any detail, lest it frighten the mainstream crowd. Sadly, the movie is dedicated to the memory of River Phoenix - originally cast as the interviewer who provides one half of the film's title - who died of a drugs overdose during pre-production; his role was taken by Christian Slater. Followed by QUEEN OF THE DAMNED (2002).
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Vampire essence
Dark09 October 2003
I have a passion for films with dark settings. What's even better is when the film is not only dark and dismal but also deep and engrossing. With a combination of Anne Rice's script and Neil Jordan's direction, the overlooked Interview with the Vampire not only looks great but contains good material. Most of the time when a film is based on a novel it will try to capture the themes of the novel by choosing areas to work from. Luckily Anne Rice also writes the screenplay and understands more than anyone else what areas need addressing, providing the backbone to the dialogue and plot.

Set in 1791 Orleans and progressing through different periods of time, IWTV is technically excellent and aware of its surroundings. From the first moment your eyes are fixed on the screen. This is the sign of great art direction coupled with costume design and set pieces that are more than pleasing on the eye. Far from in your face the film allows a taste of each period with a mixture of light and colourful scenes to the more prominent dreary settings it encompasses. Moonlit streets, abandoned plague ridden residential and underground gothic architectures all add to the great detail that has been taken in creating a believable and picturesque look to the films periods it contains. Helped also by a musical score that really lurks in the background, depicts the time and in some areas the feeling aptly.

The story, told with a mixture of narration from the protagonist (Brad Pitt in this case) and a screenplay with enough room for all the stars makes a tight little package. At just over 2 hours long though, this may put off the viewer looking for an all out action vampire piece or those with little patience. Interview after all is a drama at heart with horror elements but what sets it apart from others is the humane way in which it's dealt with. A point in the film that leans on stereotypical vampire views sets the tone of the film perfectly, fiction aside Vampires aren't so unlike humans which is portrayed through the emotions (or rejection of them) throughout. One of the key players in such a task is surprisingly Tom Cruise as the bad influence Lestat. In one of his more challenging roles, Cruise conveys a charm that fits the theatricals of his character perfectly. Through excellent makeup and clothes from a period he refuses to break free from, Cruise is less distinguishable but all the more better for losing the usual side of him that may have been too familiar. Left only with a look of ferocity and impertinence Cruise works his role to a brilliant combination that really brings out the character of Lestat making him extremely fun to watch. Lestat's mood swings and cruel insinuations really spark the film up, stealing every scene he's in.

What makes the film interesting is how every character has a background and each character has different things that make them tick. Along for the ride with Cruise and Pitt is a very young Kirsten Dunst as the disillusioned vampire child Claudia. It seems that Jordan is a good director for getting performances as Dunst gives a fine performance at such a young age, definitely showing more promise than the usual teenage focal points she has set herself on since. While Lestat is the most enjoyable character and practically the teacher, Louis and Claudia are the key elements to a story of self-discovery concerning the dark world they have joined. Other than this Christian Slater and Antonio Banderas share little screen time but enough to make their characters wholesome enough.

One area that I applaud but others may disclude is the vivid scenes of a gory nature used profusely throughout. Jordan, going for realism and with blood being an important part of vampire life includes graphic details.. and with no holds barred. Jordans realistic touches add only to the plausibility of the vampire way of life, emphasising the grotesque way of living they are lumbered with for eternity. Such a eternal damnation is one of the main themes of the film exploring the depreciation of Louis and Claudia and how they come to terms with their new life. It would seem that such a serious tone to a fictional tale would make it hard to enjoy but with a mixture of dark humour throughout the film knows not to take itself 'too' seriously. The end clearly establishes this fact nicely.

Minor quibbles aside like some hokey dialogue from time to time and despite Pitt underplaying his performance a little, among the Vampire genre and even as a drama this is a classy piece of work from a intelligent director with a flair for dark style (in most of his other films too), and more importantly produces a epic tale with sturdy direction. If you have the interest for a drama, specifically based around vampires there is little other choice than this. Through its fine performances and stunning look one things for sure, you wont forget this one easily.

7.5 out of 10
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highly underrated, often over-looked
fraggerrock23 September 2006
When you ask someone to name the best movies to come out of the early-mid 90's, not many people would mention this movie. That's too bad.

It isn't American Beauty deep, but the film presents real human emotions through the surreal notion of vampires. Cinematography, set design, and score are top notch. It doesn't look dated at all, particularly in this day in age of CG, blue screen galore.

The acting....i hate to admit, because i'm not by any means a brad pitt or tom cruise pretty darn good. This was the first film I saw tom cruise in and thought (gee...the pretty boy can act), the other coming to mind being Magnolia. Brad Pitt isn't as great, but holds his own and it's a quiet, somber Brad Pitt, which is a good change to the normally twitchy, over-the- top characters he portrays (fight club, 12 monkeys, ocean's 11....even se7en to a certain extent). and of course.....kirsten dunst....who's best role in her career is this film.

I haven't read the book, so i am writing purely on the film. Apparent by the other reviews here, there are people who really like this movie. It's a shame that more people haven't given this movie a chance.
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Ornate, lushly filmed horror, with erotic overtones
Falconeer22 January 2007
Now that some time has passed, Neil Jordon's beautiful work can be watched without obsessing so much over the stars who were involved. 'Interview' is an extravagant assault on the senses, filled with beauty, erotic and graphic violence, and wonderful, at times poetic dialog. To be sure, this is a Hollywood production, but with director Neil Jordon in charge, the film possesses that special "arthouse" film look, with many scenes being too strange and dark to come across as typical Hollywood. Pitt is fine as Louis, the centuries-old vampire who recounts his sad and fascinating history to a nameless "interviewer", played a bit too light by Christian Slater. If you dislike Tom Cruise and his films, as i do, you should not let his participation in the film dissuade you from seeing this; As the sinister Lestat, Cruise is barely recognizable, and gives here, what might be his finest performance. Obviously due to the subject matter, 'Interview' is a relentlessly dark film. There are a few short scenes of daylight in the beginning, until Louis is transformed. Then begins his life of eternal darkness. When I saw this in the theater, the effect of sitting in a darkened room watching a film that takes place entirely at night, really felt strange. Coming out of the theater I felt as though I had been away from the real world for a long time. Jordon's aesthetic vision, supported for once by the huge Hollywood budget, insured that "Interview" looks gorgeous. The plantation that is Louis' first home, and then the Paris apartment are filled with exquisite antiques, ornate furnishings, gold framed mirrors, lace and velvet four-poster beds, etc, transporting the viewer into the 18th and 19th centuries, and lends an extra level of decadence to the lifestyle of these vampires. The costumes as well are breath-taking, and accurate to the time. The finest thing about this production though, is the beautiful, doll-like Claudia, the child-vampire, played by Kirsten Dunst. It is always terrifying and strange when a child is cast in such an evil role. Claudia's thirst for blood exceeds that of Lestat himself, and her total lack of remorse for the people she kills is the most haunting and disturbing thing about this. The approach to her character was very un-Hollywood, thankfully. Anne Rice's book evokes feelings of loneliness and a profound sadness, and those feelings translate well into Jordans film. "Interview With the Vampire" is a very special, and at times superb cinematic delight, that was not ruined by it's over-exposed stars and commercialism. And those that love Gothic horror and period films should see this, and ignore it's Hollywood origins.
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Swooping In.
tfrizzell1 January 2006
A man (Brad Pitt) who turned into a vampire way back in 18th century New Orleans tells his life (and afterlife) story to a skeptical modern-day journalist (Christian Slater) in novelist Anne Rice's unique take on the famed supernatural creatures of the night. Pitt goes into major details on how he became a vampire (thanks to vampire loon Tom Cruise in a wickedly wild over-the-top turn) and his run-ins with others like him (a very young Kirsten Dunst and a then-unknown Antonio Banderas). Opulently realized schizophrenic exercise that has a little bit of something for most audiences. Pitt is focused, Cruise is unbound and Dunst arguably does the work of her life. Director Neil Jordan (who is best known for films of similar style like "The Crying Game") knows exactly which buttons to push and when to push them. While flawed in many areas, "Interview With the Vampire" is still nevertheless a fun and entertaining venture that definitely has blood, teeth and wings. 4 stars out of 5.
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An entire hour is missing from the released version
dkamin-227 May 2001
Neil Jordan who is masterful with small intimate films, served up scrambled eggs on this picture where budget was no object. There is an entire hour missing from all the released versions because in 1994 Geffen/Warner Bros. didn't believe a film audience would sit through a well paced, well told story for three hours. No one in charge had seen Apocalypse Now. Perhaps someday it will be reedited and my work and the entire hour withheld will be added.
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Favourite Vampire Movie!
Moonlyn13 February 2005
I am a vampire lover and this is the ultimate vampire movie (second only to "Bram Stoker's Dracula") consisting of the two sexiest male vampires ever created- Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt. I must admit at first I thought Tom Cruise was a touch too 'apple pie' for this role, but he ultimately knocked my socks off! In fact, he is my second favourite vampire ever, second only to the incredible Gary Oldman in "Bram Stoker's Dracula". And Brad Pitt - oooh Brad Pitt - is hands down the most gorgeous vampire ever. And he played the role of Louis convincingly... but in my eyes would've suited the role of Lestat as well. If you love vampire movies, violence and gore, with a touch of romance and sadness then you will also love this film.
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Merciful death is bittersweet.
michaelRokeefe16 November 2002
Great sets and equally impressive costumes fill this lurid and dark vampire tale. Anne Rice adapts her best selling 1976 novel for the big screen. The story of depraved love, lust and hunger is told to a reporter(Christian Slater)by Louis(Brad Pitt)the conscience-stricken protege of the unremorseful and lascivious Lestat(Tom Cruise). Lestat tries hard to convince Louis that the blood of New Orleans aristocrats is the most pleasing of all. Louis would rather suck the blood of rats and chickens than to take human life. Joining them for companionship is Claudia(twelve yr old Kirsten Dunst)who favors sinking her fangs into whores and elderly women. Armand(Antonio Banderas)the oldest living vampire in the world lashes out his judgment of the three blood suckers.

It is fun watching Cruise and Pitt living as a couple in hopes of hiding their vampirish way of life. Miss Dunst is absolutely great as a character that ages thirty some odd years while staying in the body of a child. Note:Cruise was not Rice's favorite choice to play Lestat, but after the finished product was said to be more than pleased. Moody and gruesome, but a must for vampire fans.
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5 hotties + awesome vampire book= #1 Vampire movie of all time!!!
Smells_Like_Cheese13 August 2001
Interview with the Vampire is hands down probably the number one vampire movie. We got to see a story so unique and original, the eyes through a vampire and his world. Normally, we see Dracula getting chased around by Van Helsing, all we know is vampires are usually bad and must be destroyed, yatta, yatta, yatta. But this time, we not only experience how Louis became a vampire, but what his life became of it. Anne Rice would truly be proud of how much a great movie her most famous book turned out to be.

We have some great and very attractive actors who star in this film like: Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise, Antonio Bandares, Christian Slater, and Stephen Rea, not to mention a very young and new Kirsten Dunst. The story starts off with Christian Slater interviewing Brad Pitt, who plays Louis, he makes the most interesting statement to Christian that he's a vampire. Obviously, Christian doesn't take this seriously, but Louis offers him one thing: his story.

Louis was born and grew up during the time when America was just being discovered in the late 1700's, he just lost his wife and child in labor, a little different than the book, but anyways, but his misery brings him to wanting death, and Lestat, played by the brilliant Tom Cruise, brings him that with becoming a vampire. Of course Louis doesn't realize what he gets himself into, but Lestat does what he can to show Louis the perks of being a vampire, even if it means bringing in a child, Claudia, played by Dunst, and turning her into a vampire to keep Louis with him. But Claudia and Louis look at Lestat as a warden and won't let them go, so they attempt to kill him and flee the city of New Orleans to France.

In Paris, they meet a group of thespian vampires, they kill people on stage as if they were in a play. "Vampires pretending to be humans pretending to be vampires". Louis meets Armond, played by Bandares, and Santiago, played by Rea. Armond is obsessed with Louis and tells him that Claudia shouldn't be a vampire since she is so young and ends up destroying the thing that means most to Louis, I won't spoil it. Which leads Louis back to the interviewer where Christian is starting to question his doubts of Louis being a vampire.

Interview with the Vampire is a terrific film that is just beautifully directed and the actors are just so brilliantly charismatic, it's just impossible in some ways for someone not to enjoy this movie. I know my friends who are not into horror films ended up loving this one because of it's interesting story. It's just a great film that I think everyone should get the chance to see.

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A visually stimulating tale of darkness and mortality
Movie_Muse_Reviews3 March 2008
I'm trying to get over the fact that the ending of the film makes absolutely no sense to me (unless i'm looking hard for something that's not there). When I do get past that, however, I find that "Interview with the Vampire" is a very beautifully told tale that looks deep into the heart of what evil truly is.

Based on Anne Rice's novel (and also her screenplay) "Interview" is the retelling of Louis's (a vampire) story of how he became a vampire. The story starts in 18th century Louisiana where Louis (Brad Pitt) encounters an opportunity for eternal life when he is seeking death. A vampire named Lestat (Tom Cruise) gives him this opportunity with the expectation of companionship. When Louis has trouble disconnecting his human moral compass from his blood-lusting monster of a self, Lestat tries to test him and eventually brings him another companion when he makes Claudia (Kirsten Dunst) a vampire as well. The story is Louis's search for an understanding of this immortal life that he can come to terms with, which results in a film that explores deep into the notion of immortality with a price.

The film's beauty comes from the very lavish sets and the strong mystical element that is worked into every set. Though the setting is all real world, because the film explores the fantastical world of vampires, everything seems surreal and magical. Dante Ferretti has created another beautiful movie world and Neil Jordan makes it shine through his camera-work. Jordan really brings Rice's screenplay to life, or else you'd be looking at a particularly boring film.

Cruise as Lestat was a good choice. He is downright creepy and conveys the sense of moral ambiguity that Lestat represents. Pitt also shows both the strong and the weak sides of Louis, though he is not as skilled with handling some of the film's melodrama. Dunst is probably the most praiseworthy. Having to portray a child who technically has wisdom beyond her appearance is a challenge and Dunst is behind some of the film's best scenes and most suspenseful moments. Her fits of rage are probably the most interesting as is her character's predicament with never growing up, which really starts the conversation about mortality and the film's themes.

Though some plot clarity would have been nice and a little less melodrama would have helped make the themes really significant to the rest of the film, "Interview" is a successful film from a visual standpoint. The craftsmen of this film, everyone from production design to costumes and make-up, truly made this film take off from okay to good and very interesting. There is no doubt that you are deeply interested in what happens to these characters and that is thanks to the actors and the incredible world that was envisioned for them to act in. ~Steven C

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A Gothic tale of love, hate, sorrow and blood
instigate_insanity27 May 2006
As with Queen of the Damned, so it was with this movie that I made what I thought was a rather hideous mistake in watching the movie prior to reading the book. Those fears were well based with queen of the Damned- the book is utterly fantastic, whereas even without having read the book the only part of the movie I liked was the soundtrack.

My fears were groundless with "Interview". Granted, there were parts missing and parts changed, but not in such a way that it detracted from the story in general. Where the book is a horror novel which almost parallels Bram Stoker's "Dracula" in its ability to terrify, the movie is a drama which alternates between inducing laughter, sorrow and, in some parts, nearly reducing the viewer to tears. Pitt's performance in this regard is particularly fine.

However, the one thing that everyone who has seen this movie cannot fail to agree on is the fact that, whilst there is indeed an all-star cast (notable characters are Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise, Antonio Banderas, Christian Slater and Kirsten Dunst), it is the twelve year-old Kirsten Dunst (playing Claudia) who steals the show. In the book she was a truly terrifying child, whose alternate flashes of rage, love and complete and utter lack of emotion serve to unsettle the reader to the point of wanting to close the book and calm down for a few minutes. In the movie she is a little less cold-hearted, and the relationship between her and Louis (Pitt) is bizarre, seeming at times like the relationship between father and daughter, and at other times like the relationship between lovers.

Many viewers who have not had the pleasure of reading the book (in particular the jocks) criticize the movie for the homoerotic undertones which define the relationship that begins to build between Louis and Armand, at times like that between a teacher and their student, and at other times (again) like lovers. This relationship is underdeveloped in the movie, and is not given the chance to blossom into the full- fledged bond that Louis and Armand share for a brief period in the book.

A strong performance is put in by Banderas as Armand, albeit slightly different in temperament than the Armand of Rice's books. Unfortunately the role was too brief a one, and Banderas did not get nearly long enough a role.

Louis' progression through the years is another example of the areas in which this movie excels. Whilst he physically does not change, his surroundings do, and his dress sense changes with the years.

This was a strong adaptation of a brilliant book, which fans of Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles should all enjoy. The main plot of the movie stays true to the book, and in some places the dialogue is perfect, straight from the book, line for line. It has the power to disturb, induce laughter, sorrow, and excitement, and is a visual feast for the eyes. The vampires look exactly like Rice describes them, except (dissapointingly) in the case of Armand. And even with the screw-ups in Armand's appearance, Antonio Banderas plays him extremely well.

The fact that I happen to despise Tom Cruise can only serve to add to just how good this movie must be.
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The Saga of a Vampire with Human Soul
claudio_carvalho29 May 2017
In San Francisco, the journalist Daniel Malloy (Christian Slater) interviews in a hotel room a man called Louis (Brad Pitt) that claims to be a vampire. Louis tells that he was the owner of a plantation in New Orleans and happily married with a daughter. In 1791, he grieves the loss of his wife and daughter and has no wish to live anymore. Out of the blue, he meets the vampire Lestat (Tom Cruise) that attacks him and asks Louis to choose whether her wants to die or to turn into a vampire. Louis accepts to be a vampire but is reluctant to kill humans, drinking animal blood to survive while Lestat feels pleasure in killing human. When Louis meets the girl Claudia (Kirsten Dunst), who has just lost her mother in an outbreak of plague in New Orleans, he does not resist and drinks her blood. Lestat turns Claudia into a vampire to keep Louis with him. Louis treats Claudia as a daughter while Lestat teaches her to be a killer. Years later, Claudia gives laudanum to kill Lestat and flees to Paris with Louis where they meet the vampires Armand (Antonio Banderas) and Santiago (Stephen Rea) that pose of actors in a theater with other vampires. But a tragic event changes the saga of Louis in Europe.

'Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles" is a Gothic film that discloses the saga of Louis, a vampire initially with human soul. His grief and pain for the loss of his wife and daughter; his transformation into a vampire and relationship with the Lestat; his love for the vampire girl Claudia; his wrath for the vampires in Paris; his return to New Orleans are told in a screenplay written by the author of the novel Anne Rice and directed by Neil Jordan. The changing of behavior of the immortals Louis and Lestat along the centuries is intriguing with the bon vivant Lestat losing his interest in life and Louis questioning the meaning of many things that he has experienced. The cinematography and the art direction are amazing and the haunting music score complete this good film. My vote is eight.

Title (Brazil): "Entrevista Com o Vampiro" ("Interview with the Vampire")
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why do vampires have to whine so much?
BWMonkey28 March 2004
i read the book, liked it okay and then saw the movie. overall, i liked it. it was a welcome change to the usual portrayal of vampires as pure evil, spawned from the devil and with a lot of religious aspects to it. anne rice made her vampires enjoyable and easy to believe in. unfortunately, louis (brad pitt) is a terminal whiner.

i preferred lestat, loathe though i am to say that i liked tom cruise. brad pitt just annoyed me and i kept wishing he would come to terms with the fact that he now has to drink blood to stay happy and functional. the star of the show was, by far, young kirsten dunst as claudia. as the film progressed, she gave the impression of maturing and adulthood, even though her appearance never altered.

this movie was fairly close to the book, mostly just leaving things out rather than changing them completely. it was far too melodramaitc for my taste, however. why can't vampires just be? by do they have to talk with a lot of dramatic pauses and look at you with smouldering eyes? can't they just be? that, of course, is a personal preference.

not a bad movie. good to see with friends, especially when you like to poke fun a the characters. my specialty.
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gorgeous stuff....
suburbannightmare4 November 2006
One of the best and most beautiful vampire films ever.

This film is amazingly beautiful, from the sets, locations, even right down to its main characters (apparently this film prided itself on the casting – it used four of cinema's most gorgeous actors). The casting for this movie is pure inspired genius, although Cruise did cause absolute uproar when he got the part of Lestat. Let's face it, he's not portrayed as the most likable of people, (not to mention being a tad unhinged) or even as a decent actor (remember 'Legend'?) but he does an amazing turn as Lestat. He's vicious, villainous, camp and demonically gleeful in this role. Even Anne Rice sent him a letter of apology after she saw his performance. Brad Pitt's portrayal of Louis is a fair show too; he manages to maintain constant melancholy without crossing the line into whiny annoyance, although his constant pouting detracts from his character somewhat (you're a vampire, not Zoolander!). Kirsten Dunst's Claudia is pure childlike evil. Hard to believe she was only 12 when she made this film.

Having read Anne Rice's infamous 'Vampire Chronicles' a hundred times, it wasn't until I saw this movie that I'd even heard of them (shameful, no?). Even after reading the book, it was one of those rare moments when you think, "well the film was just as good". And to say that a LOT of the narrative was cut, it retains everything about the original story that it should; the atmosphere, the gloom, the characters, it's all there. Even the gore factor is stylishly done; for one, the blood looks real, which, let's face it is one of the most important, yet overlooked elements in most vampire films – in Blade, they used what looks like ribena, in Dracula, they used red jelly, and in The Lost Boys they used something resembling passata. The vampires themselves also look absolutely amazing. (To quote Louis "Do you find us beautiful, magical? Our white skin, our fierce eyes…") The makeup and contact lenses, for once, do more than just make the actors look like they've got flu.

Unlike "Queen Of The Damned" this movie sticks to its content, and gives the audience the story, remaining true to it at every stage. There's no story jig, no idiotic and pointless changes to plots and the whole thing is as stylish and sinister as you can get. It does justice to the book and remains a brilliant film in its own right. One to add to any film-junkie's collection.
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Brilliant Drama - if you have any interest in vampires you must watch this!
vikingvampireparrot25 August 2006
Interview with the Vampire is the epitome of modern vampire films (modern included to exclude Dracula, Nosferatu etc which would create a controversial debate!).

Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles are the most important supernatural works of the last thirty years and must have inspired many of the new vampire/supernatural films that focus on character/action/drama rather than portraying them as fear objects in horrors.

This film is a drama, not a horror, and anyone expecting a horror with chases or human victims to feel sorry for will be sadly disappointed. Yes, there is blood and feeding but it is the vampires you feel for.

The three leads are incredible, Kirsten Dunst deserves special praise due to her age and anyone who says Tom Cruise can't act should see this film. Brad Pitt's Louis is just as whiney and annoying as he should be, but you understand this given the circumstances of his turning.

It thoroughly involves you in the vampire world and displays how lonely and isolating it can be (yes, I know it's not real but you get the point).

Here's hoping they film some more of Rice's novels (hopefully more in this vein than the slightly OTT Queen of the Damned) - I want to see Blood and Gold! (Memnoch would be brilliant but not sure if it could be pulled off)
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dr_foreman9 July 2004
I grew up on the macho vampire tradition of Hammer horror films, which featured powerful and highly sexualized vampires who spent entire movies chasing women and wasting villagers without sparing a thought about the true nature of their cursed existence. It was therefore a shock to me when I first encountered Ann Rice's bisexual, whiny bloodsuckers who seem to get no joy whatsoever out of being immortal, irresistible creatures of the night. In place of fun Hammer action, "Interview with the Vampire" serves up a constant nasal whine from Louis. This is a vampire movie for a depressed crowd; it oozes ennui and stagnancy. The only characters with life are Lestat and Claudia, but most of the screen time goes to boring Brad Pitt and his problems. There are really no human characters, nobody you can relate to...unless you think your life is like being a bored vampire. Weird, sadistic, slow. And the production style is already dated.
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A Bloody Dose Of Realism
ccthemovieman-117 February 2008
This is a vampire movie with a unique twist - realism! I am not inferring that creatures like this really exist - this is fiction - but if they did, this probably would be the most accurate account of them because vampires are not glamorized here. In fact, the film pictures the vampire existence as a lonely, depressing one. At least we see that in the case of Brad Pitt's character here, a vampire who needs the blood but knows it's morally wrong to kill human beings for it.

The acting in this movie is excellent, which includes the star of it, Tom Cruise, and young Kristin Dunst. The latter was a surprise hit to me as the young vampiress (is there such a word?) who is trapped in a little girl's body. (Dunst was about 11 or 12 years old and not that well-known at the time of this release.)

What I was a little uncomfortable with were a few of the bloody scenes, particularly in the first third of the movie. They were too graphic and just plain disgusting at times. Also, there also were definite homosexual overtones between a few of the vampires. Was this film another attempt to push that agenda? Probably, but it seemed out of place in a vampire movie.

Perhaps the final song of the movies sums up its contents best: "Sympathy For The Devil," by the Rolling Stones. interesting choice for a closing song.
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Great great great vampire movie!
Lady_Targaryen20 October 2005
Warning: Spoilers
This is my favorite vampire movie ever, and I already watched it more than 7 times! Much better and interesting than Dracula's story, Interview with the vampire is a great movie,showing a vampire called Louis telling the story of his life during the centuries, with their two companions Lestat (the vampire who made him) and Claudia,who he considers his daughter. I am a big Anne Rice's books fan, so I totally recommend to people who have enjoyed or was fascinated with this movie, to buy her books and read to know more about the character's life and sequence. This movie contains some errors and not everything is exactly like the book who it was based on, but even on this way, he totally deserves to be watched!
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One of the best movies of all time!
vamp_lestat9 November 2002
You can tell I really love this movie. I named two of my e-mail addresses not to mention my IMDb ID after either Lestat or Louis.Where shall I start? The plot is exceptional, I have to give credit for that, and the cast is so STAR STUDDED! They were not only pretty faces but also great talent! This movie featured the likes of Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise & Christian Slater, which are 3 of my favorite Hollywood men, who bought life into their characters, making us feel that they were not actors portraying a role but the actual characters themselves, which is important in an actor to get into every movie's individual character(Do you know what I'm saying? It's kind of like the Keanu Reeves issue, in which he acts the same for every different role he's playing.), distinguish it from the other roles he's played.

Kirsten Dunst was fantastic, this being her best movie in my opinion. She definitely deserved that Golden Globe nomination. For a girl going on 12 at that time, she acted magnificently! She really portrayed a young, confused vampire, filled with fury & anger, yet still has love for certain people. Louis de Point du Lac's role was mighty complex, being caught in the midst of his mortal self, & the cruel, non-forgiving monster he's become. Brad Pitt did well to accomplish this, as so did Tom Cruise formulated a certain something to Lestat de Lioncourt's character, making it so special, something that wasn't in other Tom Cruise movies.

There were many things special about this movie, but I'm not quite sure what exactly made it so special to me. But I hope when you watch this movie, you'll find something special in it as well.
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Not your typical Vampire genre film.
lizardjims8 September 2018
Neil Jordan (''The Crying Game'', ''Mona Lisa'', ''The End of an Affair'') is a director who dares to experiment with new ideas and the result is more than often successful as any cinephile is able to recognize the visual beauty and overall aesthetic prowess of his movies. ''The Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles'' begins with a journalist (C. Slater) meeting a mysterious young man, Louis (B. Pitt), in a hotel room in order to conduct an interview for his newspaper. The interviewee claims that he is a vampire, a statement met with incredulity and an awry smile from the reporter who will soon discover that the man in front of him may be made of flesh and bones but he is not human. Louis needs to tell his story, how he became a vampire, who made him, the relationship between him and little Claudia (Kirsten Dunst in a very young age) as well as other vampires. The movie aspires to be a treatise on the nature of evil and the first half is overloaded by conversations made between Louis and Lestat (T. Cruise) who ponder on the fundamental questions of ethics. There is no doubt that the movie's dialogue is well-crafted but sometimes it seems contrived and serves no real purpose and that is the reason why my actual rating is closer to 3,5/5. Apart from that, ''Interview with the Vampire'' is a massive production characterized by high-quality standards and wonderful performances by an all-star cast. I generally detest vampire/zombie genre films and I'm constantly avoiding them. That movie though is an exception as it has a deeper, philosophical dimension questioning the notions of the good and the bad. I can only zealously recommend it to any true cinephile, especially to Neil Jordan's fans.
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A vampire tragedy
Tweekums2 August 2016
Warning: Spoilers
This film opens in modern day San Francisco as Louis, a man claiming to be a vampire, starts to tell his story to a journalist. His story begins in New Orleans in 1791; Louis is a wealthy plantation owner but he can't get over the loss of his wife and child a year previously. He deliberately puts himself in dangerous situations but rather than getting himself killed he meets the vampire Lestat. Lestat turns Louis into a vampire but he seems no happier and can't bring himself to feed on people; instead he survives by drinking the blood of rodents; something that disgusts Lestat. Eventually he feeds on the housemaid before heading to a plague infected area of New Orleans. Here he bites the young Claudia, Lestat then turns her into a vampire. Louis treats her like a daughter but as the years pass she has difficulties accepting the fact that she will always be a child and eventually takes her revenge on Lestat for turning her into a vampire. Louis and Claudia then travel to the Old World looking for other vampires; what they find isn't what they hoped for.

Vampire films usually centre on those seeking to destroy them of their potential victims so it is interesting to see the story told from the point of view of a vampire. Brad Pitt does a fine job as the emotionally tormented Louis and Tom Cruise is impressive as he plays against type as Lestat. Young Kirsten Dunst is great as Claudia; beautifully portraying the girl who is doomed to never grow up. The story is told in an interesting way and the old New Orleans setting provided plenty of atmosphere. As one would expect from a vampire film there is some bloody violence although less than one might expect. The action is important but not as important as the characters and looking at the question of what it means to be a vampire. Overall this is an impressive film that fans of the vampire genre are likely to enjoy.
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