Horrorible Review: “Daylight’s End”

Enjoy this Monday with Mildred!

Daylight's End movie poster

Daylight’s End

I heard someone say the other day that they couldn’t tell the difference between vampires and zombies. Yeah, let that sink in a moment.  I explained to her that zombies are fun, typically easy to kill, and are a blank slate for writing social commentary and exploring the human psyche. Vampires are completely humorless, narcissistic whiners. With that in mind I can’t explain why I decided to try, once again, to watch a vampire movie. Sure enough I got comfy with some chips and a beer turned it on, and within a minute was rolling my eyes so hard I couldn’t find my beer anymore.  What a tragedy that is.

Here’s a boss Dodge whipping loudly down the road through a bleak apocalyptic landscape.  It stops at an obviously long abandoned gas station and after a dramatic pause, out steps…

Well this is when I lost control of my eyes. The man is tall and dark and mysterious with a never changing grim expression. He’s wearing snug, sexy clothes festooned with hard shooty things (guns). He’s got a lot of guns and they’re all big. His thick, wavy black hair is slicked back and his eyes are concealed behind a pair of sunglasses that probably cost more than I make in a week. Inside he finds a young woman vampire hiding in a freezer so he drags the freezer out using his car and shoots open the lock so she can tumble out and die screaming in the sun. He gets in his car and drives off.

So he’s not there for gas.

The next night insomnia forced me to watch the rest, though I knew it wasn’t very good. In just a few minutes I was again irritated by a lot of things, like how important it seems to be that he looks and acts sexy.  Vampire films are not about regular people trying to deal with a world gone dangerous, only the pretty ones. And y’all know how much I hate it when characters do irrational, pointless things, like stopping at a gas station in the apocalypse and not even looking for gas.  You know, for the car that still runs great on the nice, clean roads. And what is it about being cool with casual cruelty, especially toward women vampires?

Turns out that Daylight’s End  is more of a standard good guys under siege movie. There were a lot of cool guns, and lots, and LOTS of scenes with macho men pointing them dramatically around corners and shooting squib covered vampires. No stakes to the heart here, you just shoot them or pull them into the sun, making them exactly equal to fast moving zombies. An egalitarian vampire film.  If you’ve seen even one siege movie, you know exactly what happens. You can see the paint-by-numbers lines if you look close enough.

People have compared the film to the tv series The Walking Dead, and there are several similarities. Everyone wears black or grey and hasn’t bathed since the apocalypse began. Especially when time is of the essence is a perfect opportunity to saunter toward the shootout so you can have some manly chit chat. The creatures come in endless waves and are easy to kill, until it’s time for one of the characters to die. The self-imposed, macho leader with a broken heart and the biggest gun brings massive destruction to an otherwise safe location.

On a personal note, I thought it was cool when two characters talk about John Hunt Morgan’s raid into the northern states during the Civil War. First, how did this nugget of actual history make it into an otherwise cookie cutter film, and second, Morgan is sorta famous for fighting the northernmost battle of the war in the town I was born in.  Of course, being Hollywood they told the story wrong, for dramatic effect, and had Morgan’s troop slaughtered after a heroic stand. What actually happened was that he ran out of juice and took a train south.

If you’re not allergic to narcissistic heroics and you like watching men deftly shooting big guns at talented stunt people, you’ll probably enjoy this movie. You certainly won’t be surprised by anything, and the illogical stuff may just flow right past you.

LINKS:

Daylight’s End Official Trailer 1 (2016) – Johnny Strong Movie 

CFR: In Addition: LOLOLOL! So uh, do you think Mildred loathed this movie? LOLOLOL! Thanks friend ’cause I don’t think I will watch. Though, dang, hero is hot.

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