Review: Only Lovers Left Alive

Posted by on Aug 22, 2014 in Movie Reviews | 0 comments

220px-Only_Lovers_Left_Alive_posterOnly Lovers Left Alive is the vampire movie you’ve always wanted. You didn’t even know you wanted it, but you did. Tom Hiddleston and Tilda Swinton are ancient, gorgeous, and shockingly human.

Let’s get this out of the way: this isn’t a Hollywood vampire movie. There is no violence, very little blood, and all of the sex is off-screen. The vampires aren’t showy. They don’t run around doing vampire things like flying and jumping off buildings. It’s all about the characters and how they interact. In the way of many independent films, there’s no driving plot and the movie is very much about the aesthetics as it meanders through their unlives. Personally, I love that, and I love this movie.

Adam suffers from ennui, like many old vampires. The world has gone on without him and he doesn’t like that much. He surrounds himself with old things, and shuns the world at large. He’s tired of the world of “zombies,” humans who can’t appreciate what they have. When it looks like he might be considering ending his life, his vampire wife Eve comes to his rescue, sharing with him all the things that he loves and revitalizing his will to live. It really is a beautiful story of long-time love.

The vampires in this world have some cool powers. Eve has the ability to tell you the creation date of any object she touches. Adam is a tinkerer that has unlocked Nikola Tesla’s electric theories. There are hints that vampires in this world share telepathic links. There’s also something about the gloves that I didn’t quite understand, but was a cool touch.

There’s a lot of intellectual humor that’s fun and thoughtful, with nods to many great scientists and thinkers. Jokes about who really wrote Shakespeare’s plays and who gave Schubert his music abound. Their long lives are filled with art, learning, and love.

My favorite thing about this movie? Tilda Swinton. Her portrayal of a vampire is somehow both glamorous and shabby. Oh, and blood popsicles.

Only Lovers Left Alive is romantic, and beautiful, and joyfully recommended. See the trailer below.

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