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Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

by

Jeff Nelson

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is an entertaining vampire flick that should be seen on the basis of that alone and nothing else.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
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To all of those who are on the same side of me, vampire movies have been coming out far too frequent ever since the trash known as Twilight was released. While I think that the bloodsuckers should have time away from the silver screen to recover, it doesn't seem to be letting up any time soon. However, I do miss the old vampires that used to dominate such features with violence. The last vampire film to really capture my interest is 30 Days of Night, which returned us to the time when vampires preferred to rip out throats than sparkle and confess their love. Based on a book, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is now being presented on the big screen. The title alone sounds very silly, but this film doesn't hide anything for a bigger box office. What you've seen in the trailers and TV spots is exactly what you get here. The feature provides summer fun and a lot of slow motion.

Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States, discovers vampires are planning to take over the nation. He makes it his mission to eliminate them all. As mentioned, the story is exactly how it sounds. This is a story about a president being a vampire hunter. Those expecting a serious plot aren't going to get it here and should just move along and watch something else. The feature is told from the perspective of Lincoln and begins as he's a young child and has his first encounter with a vampire. As he grows older, he meets another hunter who teaches him how to kill the bloodsuckers, but only for reasons of justice and not vengeance. A very interesting thing I found is how Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is able to take a completely ridiculous story and somehow intertwine it with actual historical events. Otherwise, the remainder of the story is exactly what we've come to expect from summer action flicks. It's paper thin with a lot of sequences that stretch reality extremely far, but who would expect anything more from a film titled Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter? The same goes for the characters. They're as thin as they come. However, this is actually a good thing. This movie is meant to focus upon the action sequences and funny plot elements, not to develop characters. This script is absolutely absurd, but it has created a summer flick that's actually a lot of fun with pacing that makes the film fly by.

While some people might actually try to take this plot seriously, others might do the same with the acting. I could easily tell that these actors knew exactly what this was and not to take it seriously. Benjamin Walker is Lincoln and successfully brings the character to the silver screen. Dominic Cooper is perhaps the nicest of treats here as Henry Sturgess, the man who teaches Lincoln who to become a hunter. I'm a fan of Cooper's past work and he's believable in his role here, as well. Girls, and some guys, are sure to like what they see from him. Another actor I've enjoyed in other features is Mary Elizabeth Winstead, playing Mary Todd Lincoln. She's solid in the role and is convincing every time she's featured on the screen. There aren't any bad performances here, as none of them took this too seriously. There aren't any performances here to rave about, but they're very acceptable, given the type of movie this is.

The trailers and TV spots promised us visuals that would look fantastic once they reached the big screen. Well, they didn't lie to us. From start to finish, I could tell that there was a lot of effort put into the special effects. This was also clearly shot knowing that it would be in 3D, as there's constantly stuff flying out towards the screen. I'm not sure if it was just the screening I saw the film at, although some scenes looked a bit overly sharp at times and overly soft at others. However, the remainder of the film was crystal clear. As for the 3D effects, I'm not a big fan of the gimmicky feel of things popping out at me from the screen, but if you are, then you're sure to have a great time with this one. However, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter provides more than just that with the extra dimension. There are some sequences where the film presents some truly well-shot 3D. Such scenes include dust particles in the air, smoke going across the screen, and Lincoln spreading vampire blood with his axe. During these sequences, there's an incredible amount of depth to where it feels as if one could walk through the picture. During these portions, it feels less like a pop-up book and more like an immersive experience. While I'm sure that the 2D version would be fine to check out, this is an experience that's more exciting to be had in the 3D format. My only complaint here is that the slow motion is way overused and becomes repetitive, as it often does in modern action flicks.

I generally dedicate one paragraph for the visuals, although I felt that it needed two in this case. Those of us who miss vampires seen in films such as 30 Days of Night will be pleased to know that the ones seen here are similar to those. While they can hide behind the face of humans, can become invisible, and are ultra-strong and ultra-fast, they're able to show their true form. The actual vampires are ugly, vicious, and seek to drain humans of their blood in any way possible. Abraham Lincoln's fight sequences with the vampires are exciting and a lot of fun. While I wouldn't classify this as being as violent as 30 Days of Night, it still has some moments where there's quite a bit more violence than what we're used to seeing in a vampire movie within the past couple years. Hopefully filmmakers forget about the crappy Twilight "vampires," if you can call them that, and bring us more vampires that are looking to kill and obtain their blood rather than sparkle in the sun and be in love.

I haven't read the book, so I'm reviewing this based upon the film by itself. Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is truly what you make it out to be. If you're going to be critical about the plot, characters, and other elements, then you should just avoid this one from the start. However, if you're looking to simply have mindless entertainment with some awesome visuals, then you should have a great time. Of course, the plot is absolutely stupid and almost nonexistent and the characters are paper-thin, but that's exactly what this was meant to be from the start. The visuals are beautiful, although there's a bit too much slow motion for my tastes. This is a flawed action flick, but at least it's an incredibly fun flick. You could end up doing a lot worse than this with some other flicks that are currently out in theaters. Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is an entertaining vampire flick that should be seen on the basis of that alone and nothing else.

My Rating = Three and One Half Stars

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