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The Lost Boys (1987)

The Lost Boys Special Edition DVD

Sleep all day. Party all night. Never grow old. Never die. Its fun to be a vampire.

Directed by:

Joel Schumacher

Rating: 7/10

Running Time: 97 minutes

US Certificate: R UK Certificate: 12

On DVD

Country: United States

Teen vampire flick ‘The Lost Boys’ isn’t exactly the scariest horror movie ever made. In fact, the ridiculously over-sized 80s hairstyles on show are probably more frightening than the teeth. Come to think of it, it’s not exactly the funniest comedy you’re ever likely to come across either. But there’s just something about its 50-50 mix of the two genres that just works fantastically well, creating a memorable nocturnal knees-up that manages to amount to much more than the sum of its parts.

The main focus of the film is the Emerson family. Mum (Diane Wiest) has just split up with her hubby so, along with her two sons Michael and Sam (Jason Patric and Corey Haim), she drives to the seaside town of Santa Carla to stay with Grandpa (Barnard Hughes, who you might also remember as the Gramps out of ‘Blossom’). One night, the fam are all out enjoying a nice evening of live soft rock power ballads (what a soundtrack this one’s got, by the way), when Mikey spots himself a long-haired lovely by the name of Star (Jami Gertz). He follows her for a while, gets introduced to her pals (among them a bemulleted Kiefer Sutherland, in his breakthrough role) and, yadda yadda yadda, he becomes a vampire. And THAT, kiddy-winks, is why you’re not supposed to wander off with strangers.

Despite its fairly conservative running time of just over an hour-and-a-half, there’s loads going on in this film. Alongside Michael’s delve into the world of transition vamp (not to be confused, of course, with that band Wendy James was in), there’s a blossoming romance between Mum and creepy storekeeper Max (Edward Herrmann), a couple of brothers (Corey Feldman and Jamison Newlander) who claim to be the local experts on bloodsucker-busting, and even a bit of space at the side for that bloke who played Bill in ‘Bill & Ted’ (Alex Winter, who never really did as well as Keanu Reeves, did he?).

It’s pure popcorn stuff, of course. It’s not saying anything profound, and it’s certainly not trying to teach us anything – but Hell, if you’re after that sort of thing you’re hardly likely to settle down with a Joel Schumacher movie anyway. What is it, though, is an extremely entertaining goth romp featuring some very black comedy, tongue-in-cheek performances all round, and just enough climactic gore to go out with a bang.

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It's Got: An end-of-film bloodbath. Literally.

It Needs: Plenty of Holy water.

DVD Extras In celebration of this film’s undying (or should that be undead?) popularity, Warner Home Video have released this jam-packed 2-disc Special Edition. It features a director’s commentary, deleted scenes, a retrospective documentary, a multiangle featurette on Corey’s Haim and Feldman (or ‘The Lost Coreys’ as I like to call them), four ‘Inside the Vampire’s Cave’ features, and a behind-the-scenes butcher’s at the work of make-up master Greg Cannom. DVD Extras Rating: 8/10

Alternatives:

Buffy the Vampire Slayer, From Dusk Till Dawn, John Carpenter's Vampires

Summary

This silly-but-enjoyable cult classic is really something to get your teeth into.

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