In my lifetime, I've seen vampires portrayed in many different lights—sexy, terrifying, humorous, and even...well...sparkly and often brooding. I've shamefully admitted that I fell for the whole Twilight thing, but in my defense it was the hopeless love story that pulled me in (I'm a sucker for those). The movies do bother me as I find them a bit campy, and not at all the way I like my vampires (think hissing on the baseball field in the first movie).
Because of Twilight and its sickening over-exposure/bad wrap, I haven't touched the vampire genre as an author. I have friends who have, however, and do extremely well despite the bad reputation that seems to have tarnished vamps as a species (check out Emma Meade and L. H. Cosway).
But there are some who make an appearance in my newest novel, Paranormal Keepers. Only mine won't be the kind you would fall in love with. My reasoning behind this is the slew of vampire movies I adore, all in which vampires are not of the romantic and sparkling variety. And that's just how I like them.
In the spirit of vampire awesomeness that does NOT include Twilight, I'm counting down my top ten favorite blood sucking movies:
#10 - Blade II
Okay, I'll admit, this one only made the list because Norman Reedus was in it. So sue me. Still, the vampires and special effects were pretty decent.
#9 - Van Helsing
I only saw this one once, but think they portrayed vampires with proper respect. Plus it's fun to watch Kate Beckinsale kick some ass.
#8 - Daybreakers
Creepy vampires combined with a rather original premise—in the future nearly everyone has turned into a vampire no thanks to some strange disease—made this a pretty good film. Ethan Hawke and Willem Dafoe are always entertaining to watch.
#7 - Bram Stoker's Dracula
This one was borderline campy, but I still enjoyed Winona Ryder and Gary Oldman's characters. The vampires were only mildly scary, though there were some oddly disturbing scenes.
#6 - I Am Legend
I have a love-hate relationship with this movie. Although Will Smith did a good job of pulling off most of what could be considered a one-man show, the ending was another one to leave me extremely frustrated. I did enjoy the crazy, methed-up vampires, although I didn't know what exactly he was dealing with until after I saw the movie and read reviews.
#5 - Let the Right One In
This story, although sick and pretty twisted, was also one of my favorite books. The movie wasn't quite as good (they almost never are), but still managed to keep the main points of the tale that made it so intriguing. And the vampire in this story was definitely creepy!
#4 - 30 Days of Night
This was one of those horror movies that really freaked the crap out of me, and made me hide under a blanket, but was so crazy good I couldn't stop watching. THIS is how vampires really should be—so damn creepy you wouldn't even CONSIDER even making out with one. I wasn't very happy with the ending, however, as it was one of the first to start the trend of really unhappy endings that leaves you unsatisfied.
#3 - Interview With a Vampire
#2 - Lost Boys
#1 - Fright Night
This remake just came out in 2011, and I was hooked from the very first time I saw it. I'm a sucker for anything that can tastefully pull off both humor and horror in the same story, and this movie does it well. The vampire was hot, but disturbingly creepy (especially in the road scene), and I became a big fan of Anton Yelchin's acting. It still, however, remains the only movie in which I liked Collin Farrell. But it was so awesome that it beat out my reigning champion (Lost Boys) of over 20 years.