What does the world find so fascinating about vampires? In 1922, the first genuine vampire film was produced. It was an unauthorised adaption of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, which meant it became known as Nosferatu. In fact, there were even earlier adaptions involving vampires dating back as far as 1872. How many other popular horror movie figures date back as far? Regardless, since then there has been a seemingly endless stream of films based on the creatures of the night. The basic elements of Stoker’s novel remain in most vampire films. However, numerous interpretations has seen the creatures evolve in a variety of ways for better or worse.
There is something truly fascinating about these parasitic bloodsuckers. They have the unique ability to appear equally compelling and terrifying all at once. I’ve seen my fair share of movies involving these mythical demons, most of which released in the last 40 years. Here is my top 10 favourite Vampires movies.
10 – Daybreakers (2009)
This film takes place in a futuristic world overrun by vampires. A vampiric corporation sets out to capture and farm the remaining humans while researching a blood substitute.
Daybreakers is extremely underrated. Not only does it have some really nice visuals but its premise is original and unique. However, it does slow down a little too much in the final third. Also, it leaves things way too open for a sequel that will never come to be. Check out our full review here!
09 – Blade (1998)
In 1967, a pregnant woman is attacked by a vampire while giving birth. Doctors are able to save her baby, but the woman dies of infection. Thirty years later, the child has become the vampire hunter Blade.
I know, this movie has not aged particularly well. It is plagued by CGI that is so laughably bad you would think it was generated by a PS1. Still, it doesn’t change the fact that it is thoroughly entertaining and engrossing. It presents a world that is dark, depraved and infested with blood thirsty vampires. I liked how it portrayed vampires as higher beings that looked down on humans as cattle. Also, Wesley Snipes is badass as Blade and Stephen Dorff is a memorable villain.
08 – Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (2012)
The real-life figure Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States (1861–1865), is portrayed in the novel and the film as having a secret identity as a vampire hunter.
One thing you cannot accuse this movie of is lacking originality. Yes, the CGI is extremely hit and miss. However, the action scenes are absolutely tremendous. Also, I found the storyline itself to be fairly engrossing. In my opinion, it is underrated and well worth checking out. Check out our full review here!
07 – Let Me In (2010)
This movie tells the story of a bullied 12-year-old boy who develops a friendship with a female child vampire in Los Alamos, New Mexico in the early 1980s.
Let Me In is a surprisingly grim tale. It perfectly presents how cruel, cunning & calculated a vampire can be. Chloe Moretz does a really great job of portraying the two different sides to Abby. On one hand she’s a cute, innocent, doe-eyed girl. On the other hand, at the same time that’s something she uses to lure in unsuspecting victims. Check out our full review here!
06 – 30 Days of Night (2007)
30 Days of Night focuses on an Alaskan town beset by vampires as it enters into a thirty-day long polar night.
There is something about the combination of vampires, blood & snow. The ways in which this film portrays its vampires is truly terrifying. The scenario it presents is nightmarish, as are the relentless shark teethed beasts themselves. You might stand a chance against some of the vampires on this list. However, you’d have no hope against these monsters. They are as threatening and remorseless as they come, wanting nothing but to feed.
5 – From Dusk Till Dawn (1996)
Two criminals and their hostages unknowingly seek temporary refuge in a truck stop populated by vampires.
From Dusk Till Dawn is packed full of memorable scenes, one liners and great characters. Also, the practical makeup effects used on the vampires are fantastic. This is in part thanks to Tom Savini who plays the universally recognized, whip-wielding, vampire-fighting biker “Sex Machine”. I liked that even though it does have obvious comedic undertones, the vampires still look frightening and are genuinely intimidating. Check out our full review here!
04 – Near Dark (1987)
A small-town farmer’s son reluctantly joins a traveling group of vampires after he is turned on by a beautiful drifter.
Near Dark has an extremely unique visual style, especially how it presents its vampires. These aren’t your standard clean, cool looking bloodsuckers. They are drifters that look like leftovers from a biker gang. They drive around in a trailer that has aluminium foil covering the windows to block out the sunlight. The western esque world that it presents is as dark and gritty as they come. Adrian Pasdar is great as the loveable, sympathetic Caleb. Then you have Bill Paxton as the detestable yet ridiculously entertaining Severen. Also, there’s Lance Henriksen as leader Jesse Hooker. Overall, Near Dark is well worth your time.
03 – Interview with the Vampire (1994)
The film focuses on Lestat (Cruise) and Louis (Pitt), beginning with Louis’s transformation into a vampire by Lestat in 1791. The film chronicles their time together, and their turning of a ten-year-old girl, Claudia, into a vampire. The narrative is framed by a present-day interview, in which Louis tells his story to a San Francisco reporter.
I love the overall scale of this film and the way in which it is presented. The set and costume design gives it really distinct look. It may not be the goriest on the list but it still has some truly amazing visuals going for it. The tale that it displays is hugely engrossing until the very end. Also, the performances from just about everyone involved are tremendous and memorable. Check out our full review here!
02 – The Lost Boys (1987)
The Lost Boys is a cult classic 80s vampire movie about two brothers; Michael (Jason Patric) and his younger brother Sam (Corey Haim). The brothers move with their recently divorced mother, Lucy (Diane Wiest) to the beach community of Santa Carla, California. It just so happens to be the largest murder capital in the world. Still, that’s not the only thing they have to worry about.
The Lost Boys is everything I love about 80s movies and more. It has mullets, style, 80s culture references, headbands and some oily half naked guy rocking out on a saxophone, that’s 80s right? Also, I absolutely adore the soundtrack for this movie.
I love how exaggerated the characters are; the Frog brothers are hilarious as the comic book selling vampire hunters. Then there is vampire leader David who manages to be a badass coupled with being highly charismatic. The climax of this movie is all sorts of blood, gore and hilarity. The Lost Boys has a special place in my heart. Check out our full review here!
01 – Fright Night (1985)
When a teenager learns that his next door neighbour is a vampire, no one will believe him.
Surprised? What I truly adore about Fright Night is how ridiculously simple the premise is. A vampire moves next door but nobody will believe Charlie Brewster because he’s a horror fanatic who cries wolf.
Then you have Chris Sarandon delivering a mesmerizing performance as Jerry Dandridge. Roddy McDowell is seriously loveable as Peter Vincent, Vampire Killer. Also, there’s Stephen Geoffrey’s as the wonderfully eccentric Evil Ed.
I remember the first time I saw Jerry change into his vampiric form in front of Charlie, it scared the crap outta me. Combine all of this with what is possibly my favourite horror movie soundtrack of all time. It was an easy choice when deciding what my number one would be. It has a style that simply cannot be replicated in the modern day. Fright Night has scares, comedy, intrigue, memorable lines and sex appeal; it’s the total package. Also, the effects hold up surprisingly well. Check out our full review here!
Honourable Mentions –
1 – What We Do In The Shadows (2014) – Check out our full review here!
2 – Only Lovers Left Alive (2013)
Well, there you have it. What is your favourite vampire movie? One thing is for sure, it doesn’t look like they’re going anywhere anytime soon.