'30 Days of Night: Dark Days' Movie Review

30 Days of Night: Dark Days
by Jesse Miller

As far as this viewer’s concerned, 2007’s 30 Days of Night was a breath of fresh air for the vampire film. It was bleak, it was startling but more importantly, vampires were scary again for the first time in a long time. So when a sequel was announced to be in the works, I was pretty excited to see what direction it would go in.

The straight-to-DVD sequel 30 Days of Night: Dark Days picks up right where the first film ended; with Stella (now being played by Kiele Sanchez) cradling her dead husband Eben (now played by Stephen hussar) after their small town of Barrow was over run by vampires. Cut to a year later and Stella, now an ace vampire hunter is traveling the world, promoting her new book on the subject and trying to convince the world Vampires exist.

When she stays a night in L.A, She gets the attention of three other vampire hunters - you have Paul (Rhys Coiro), Todd (Harold Perrineau) and Amber (Diora Baird). They seek the help of Stella to take down the vampire queen Lilith (Mia Kirshner) because something's going down and apparently if you kill the leaders, the others will back off.

The film is flat, soulless and dull. Such a movie should've been a guilty pleasure with over-the-top gore and cheesy one-liners but it takes itself way too seriously that kicking back and enjoying the cheese just isn't an option. The cast is horrible in these roles here - Horrible - I stress this word.

For a vampire queen, you'd really expect someone menacing, something terrifying and evil - something ancient, revolting and hideous to look at - but Mia Kirshner is none of these things. For what's such a pivotal role in the film, she has no presence at all - she's flat and bland.

Speaking of dull, so is Rhys Coiro, who mumbles his way through all his dialogue. For a character with such a tragic backstory – I won’t spoil it should you feel the need to punish yourself -, you'd expect something moving. However, when he mumbles out his important monologue, it is neither moving nor engaging - it's as if Coiro is struggling to find believable emotion in the words. It really is a soulless performance.

What’s worse is that his romance with Stella – this is not a spoiler, it’s blatantly obvious from his introduction she is his intended romantic interest - is neither believable nor passionate. But I digress.

I feel there is no tension whatsoever in this film, which is inexcusable for a horror/action hybrid. When it came time for the horror and action sequences, they were so unimaginative and dull that they failed to raise any excitement from me whatsoever. There's no pulse pounding musical score, no urgency to the action – everything feels so mundane.

As a horror film it failed to scare me, as an action film it failed to thrill me and as entertainers the cast and crew failed to captivate and engage me.


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