Monday, July 9, 2012

#693. We Are the Night (2010)

Directed By: Dennis Gansel

Starring: Karoline Herfurth, Nina Hoss, Jennifer Ulrich

Tag line: "Immortal. Insatiable"

Trivia: The word "vampire" is not said once in the entire film

I’ve seen my share of vampire films over the years, yet can’t remember a single one in which the undead looked as good as they do in We Are the Night!

Louise (Nina Hoss) is the leader of a small coven of vampires, a trio that includes fellow bloodsuckers Charlotte (Jennifer Ulrich) and Nora (Anna Fischer). Together, these three travel from city to city, enjoying all the night has to offer. In a dance club one evening, Louise runs into Lena (Karoline Herfurth), a convicted thief out on parole, and immediately falls in love with her. Following a solitary bite on the neck, Lena finds herself initiated into Louise’s little group. But the lure of immortal life means nothing to the young girl, who wants only to be human again so she can pursue a relationship with Tom (Max Riemelt), a cop who’s taken a special interest in her.

We Are the Night gets off to a great start, taking us aboard a jet in mid-flight. Beginning in the cockpit, the camera slowly pulls back to reveal carnage on a grand scale, with the bloodied bodies of passengers and crew strewn about the plane, all victims of our smoking hot vampires. After finishing off a stewardess (Cristina do Rego) she found cowering in the bathroom, Louise and the others kick open the emergency exit and make their escape, leaving the jet to suffer what we assume will be its fiery fate. In this initial sequence, director Dennis Gansel reveals more to the audience than his three undead leads; he sets the tone We Are the Night will follow from this point out. With a story that takes place amidst the glitz of the European night life, We Are the Night is a stylish, fast-paced vampire tale that grabs you by the throat (pun intended) and never lets you go.

Alas, you may remember We Are the Night more for what it doesn’t have than what it does. The movie comes up short in both bloodletting (nearly every kill occurs off-screen) and nudity (perhaps it would have detracted from the story's feminist point-of-view, but come on!). While the steady stream of flash, flare and attractive females, in unison with some truly astounding special effects, make this a film I would definitely recommend, once the credits rolled on We Are the Night, I found myself wishing it showed a little more than it did.


Kevin Bachelder said...

Had this one in my queue for a while. Sounds like I should move it up. Thanks Dave.

Dave B. said...

@Kevin: I hope you enjoy it! It's a fun movie.

Thanks for the comment, sir, and I hope to talk to you soon

Anthony Lee Collins said...

I just watched this, and I think I liked it less than you did. Two sequences were excellent, I thought: the beginning (on the plane), and the escape from the hotel. Really well done (and very different).

I was really not into the "will the predatory, homicidal lesbian vampire seduce the young straight girl?" story (and the predatory lesbian vampire is a cliche that predates even Dracula).

I could tell that the filmmakers and I were going in different directions because I thought the most interesting and moving character was Charlotte, and the movie kept trying to pull me back to Louise and Lena.

Dave B. said...

Anthony: I'm thinking I did like it more than you (I really admired the film's energetic vibe), but the two scenes you point out are also favorites of mine (especially the opening).

And once I found out Charlotte was a former silent film star, I wanted to know more about her as well!

As always, thanks for the comment. It's much appreciated.