So, I just finished watching this film, and I have to say, I’m not that impressed. The look was good, both for the town and the design of the vampires, but the movie just seems so remarkably pointless.

As far as I can tell, in the Alaska town of Barrow, they prepare every year for a month of nighttime due to the tilt of the Earth and it’s position relative to the sun. That last part was me, I don’t think most of the citizens of Barrow know that. During this time, a band of vampires arrives to drink from their sled dogs and discover that human blood rocks so much more. With that new knowledge, they slaughter the town. However, the local sheriff and a smaller group of humans are determined to survive.

What gets me about this movie is that there’s really no reason for any of it to be happening. The vampires show up because they’re hungry, and finish the job because they don’t want anyone to know that they exist. This begs the question: Did nobody notice until now that every time the sun goes away for 30 days an entire town has an “accident”? Or that all of the sled dogs go missing? It implies they’ve been doing this for a while. I would think somebody, in a state where there’s very little to do, would have put the pieces together, even if they didn’t come up with “vampires” instead of “crazy dog killers.”

Maybe I’m old school, but I really think they overdid the gore. Seriously, was it necessary to show two out of three strikes with the ax when Eben cut his friend’s head off? Rather than making it more frightening, it only makes the film more vulgar and I find that I’m less inclined to react emotionally one way or the other because I’m actually seeing what happened. I mean, the head made no movements at all. Which makes sense, considering it’s a fake head. And why should I care that Eben had to cut the fake head off of his prosthetic friend? This is a problem throughout the film, where they show what should be left to the imagination of the viewer, and either their budget wasn’t big enough, or technology isn’t advanced enough, to make it look anything but fake. The lead vampire guy could have as easily crushed a coke can rather than a man’s head under his boot for all the visual effect it had.

And at the end, we have the pyrrhic victory where Eben rips out the back of the head vampire’s head. Again, for no reason other than to show him with his hand through a fake head. Thankfully, the director was clever enough not to show us that too closely. The vampires move on, having accomplished their goals (which is easy when you have none), and the main character dies as the sun rises. And for some reason, I honestly don’t care one way or another.

This film made no effort at all to make us like the characters or get involved in a plot. Rather it was a series of short films about what they did on various days during the 30 days of night, and often a break in time was an excuse to move the pieces around without having to explain how they got where they are. In the end, they tried showing us everything they could to disturb or gross us out, but the effect was instead laughable. I give this pointless bloodfest Kaoru’s Disdain, and suggest that future films from this writer or director concentrate less on consistent movement and language from the supernatural antagonists and instead focus on developing a structure for the film that makes sense.

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