Set in a not-too-distant future in which a synthetic blood substitute, dispensed by the Romanian government, allows humans and vampires to potentially co-exist.
So the premise for True Bloodthirst (previously known as Vampyre Nation) is not exactly an innovative one, but I certainly felt that it was an exciting and interesting watch – and that’s all that matters really! It didn’t jump on the ‘vampire bandwagon’ in quite the same way as a lot of other films and television series have, and this is definitely a compliment. Though it is easy to predict how the movie is going to progress, that’s ok too. A lot of audiences love the familiar! Why do you think that remakes, sequels and adaptations of books/comics/video games are so popular? There’s a certain charm involved in knowing exactly where a film is going.
I thought that the dialogue was a little cheesy at times, but considering this is a television movie, it really did a fine job. The special effects are pretty good as they are quite subtly done. It is easy with vampire films to go a little overboard with the prosthetics (to the point of the absolutely ridiculous), but True Bloodthirst doesn’t ever get too big for its boots. I feel like the name True Bloodthirst doesn’t quite sit well for me though, as it is a little too similar to the TV show, True Blood (perhaps Vampyre Nation would have been better after all!). This is more of an action film as opposed to a horror, but that’s not to undermine the tension and adrenalin fuelled antics that take place.
True Bloodthirst is fundamentally a film which requires vampires and humans to unite against a common enemy. Set in a world where vampires have emerged from secrecy and the government provide blood supplements to protect the humans from getting killed, a race of particularly twisted and brutal vampires beginning attacking members of both species without prejudice. The vampires and humans are then forced to join forces as they track down the ghastly monsters – something which neither party is too happy with! The origins of these creatures gradually becomes apparent as the film progresses, leading up to a revelation which the small band of people who set out to destroy this killer race must decide how to deal with. There are arguments, there are fights, there is sacrifice and, oh yes, there is blood.
Similarities can be drawn with the Underworld franchise, or even Blade 2, as they both portray the difficulties of vampires and humans living together. I like the fact that in True Bloodthirst they make attempts to place the vampires in the ‘real’ world, by describing them as suffering from some kind of scientific, infectious illness and also by dealing with the issues of segregation of vampires and human beings (something which is especially thought provoking when relating it back to apartheid in South Africa and things like that). If vampires really did exist, how would the world respond to them? I reckon feelings would range from cautious to downright hostile – which is something that the film got the right balance of and captured this rather well. The tension between the two ‘sides’ (vampires and humans) is what creates the brilliant sense of drama and tension throughout the film which other vampire films have lacked.
As well, I think that it is interesting to note how this film very much reflects a cautious attitude towards the government itself when it decides its policies. This is a fascinating avenue to explore and seems to transcend the mere borders of vampires biting people for blood. The general population is becoming more and more aware of the terrible atrocities that take place in the world, and it is curious to see that this mindset has even managed to spread into the film industry. We want to expose the corrupt governments (and even though this is set in Romania and in the future, I think that it still rings an eerily familiar bell amongst a lot of modern audiences).
Overall, not the best vampire film I’ve seen by quite a long stretch, but it’s a fun watch and a good bit of light relief after a long, hard day at work! It’s nice to see a movie about our night-dwelling, blood-drinking friends every so often, and True Bloodthirst does exactly what it says on the tin – you can’t say fairer than that.
True Bloodthirst (2012)