Paranormal/Fantasy Romance Author

Vampire

Music: Teeth by Lady Gaga

The first time I saw this video (age-restricted… sorry about that) I laughed myself silly. But I love this song. Totally puts me in the mind of vampires. 😀

Teeth ~ Lady Gaga

Music: Bram Stoker’s Dracula Beginning

TIMING!!

This is a total coincidence that I scheduled this post on 31 October. I thought I would have to shuffle around some posts, but nope. This spot was waiting for me to put this song here.

Totally fits the day and I LOVE this soundtrack. The movie is great but the soundtrack made it so much better. This is the music I listen to when I’m writing sinister vampires.

Bram Stoker’s Dracula Beginning ~ Wojciech Kilar

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!

Music: Sugar Water

The first time I heard this song was in episode one of Buffy the Vampire Slayer season two (When She Was Bad). I’ve loved it ever since. The beat is very sensual. Mix that with my memory of the scene where I originally heard it and I like playing this song when I’m writing something steamy.

Sugar Water ~ Cibo Matto

Movie Review: Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

Release: 22 June 2012
Starring: Benjamin Walker, Rufus Sewell and Dominic Cooper
Director: Timur Bekmambetov
Genre: Action, Fantasy, Horror, Altered History
Length: 105 min.
Rating: R

Tagline:
Are you a patriot or a vampire?

Basic Premise:
A young Abraham Lincoln takes on the mission of killing the undead vampire menace after his mother becomes their victim. But the vampire threat is about more than his vengeance. The future of the entire nation hangs in the balance and he must step up to the highest office in order to keep them from winning.

Review:
From the moment I saw the preview, I wanted to see this movie. I had seen the book in stores (didn’t read it) and thought that it was an interesting premise along with the other altered history books and altered classics coming out at the time.

My husband and I enjoyed the movie. We didn’t go in expecting much to begin with. I do have to note that fact. But we did enjoy what we got.

The story takes some suspension of disbelief. Abraham’s fighting skills aren’t something you would have seen in the West at that time. Maybe if his mentor had been Asian, that would have made more sense. BUT the action sequences were SWEET. All that axe swinging was beautiful to see. The director utilized slow motion to put emphasis on certain points of the fight. Very reminiscent of V for Vendetta and 300.

The way the history was altered to include the vampires wasn’t heavy-handed. A Civil War era enthusiast who also loves paranormal would probably enjoy the movie and not find much to complain about so far as the history is concerned.

This movie is NOT wall to wall action like the preview would have you believe. (Sidenote – I wish preview makers would stop trying to sell a movie on points it doesn’t have. That’s why movies get bad reviews.) You are following the life of Abraham Lincoln and watching him rise to power as the president of the United States all while fighting vampires.

Is it cheesy? Yes. You can tell that from the title. But if you go in expecting a cheesy vampire movie, then you’ll enjoy it that much more. My only issue with this movie was the rating. Beyond a single f-bomb, I couldn’t see where it earned the R-rating. The majority of the blood shown is black. And I saw more violence in X-Men Origins: Wolverine. I think the movie did itself a disservice by not being PG-13. At least then parents could trick their kids into a history lesson without them realizing it.

That said… Parents, the violence is on par with and maybe even less than X-Men Origins: Wolverine or any of the Marvel PG-13 movies. There are two (three if you squint) brief sexual situations and one f-bomb. If your kids are into vampire movies, you shouldn’t have any issue letting them see this one.

Movie Review: Dark Shadows

Dark Shadows

Release: 11 May 2012
Starring: Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Helena Bonham Carter and Eva Green
Director: Tim Burton
Genre: Comedy, Fantasy
Length: 113 min.
Rating: PG-13

Tagline:
The legend bites back.

Basic Premise:
Barnabas Collins has been cursed to the undead existence of a vampire by the one woman who loves him most because he refuses to love her back. After being trapped for two centuries, he’s finally released into 1970’s Maine to rebuild his family, his family business and to fight off his old flame once more.

Review:
Tim Burton movies are an automatic view for me. I love that man. Mix him with Johnny Depp and Danny Elfman and you’ve got a win. He’s only disappointed me three times. The first was Corpse Bride. The second was Alice in Wonderland. The third was this movie.

It feels like Burton is straying from the dark and going more towards camp because Dark Shadows was VERY campy. I couldn’t get over how fake the blood looked. I mean, I know it’s a PG-13 movie, but so was Avengers and the blood they showed looked better than the tomato soup Burton offered.

I endured this movie. There were funny parts, but those didn’t make up for the plot holes and anti-climatic ending. I didn’t appreciate the hint at a sequel either. I haven’t seen a movie like this since Cursed (2005) with Christina Ricci, directed by Wes Craven.

Since I only ever saw one episode of the original series, I can’t speak to how the movie compares. My husband assures me they don’t have much in common. So fans of the series shouldn’t go expecting to see a movie version of the show they loved.

Parents, there’s a little cursing and a lot of sexual situations, but the violence is minimal.

Q&A: Who’s Your Favorite Vampire?

There are so many vampires out there. I could say the ones I created are my favorites, but they aren’t. No where close. I would have to say my favorite vampire of all time is Gary Oldman’s Dracula. Gerard Butler was fun in Dracula 2000 but Gary Oldman was the MAN in Bram Stoker’s Dracula.

Now if we’re including half-vampires, my favorite of ALL TIME will always and forever be — Vampire Hunter D.

VHD (1985)

VHD: Bloodlust (2000)

Books, TV, movies, anime, comics — Who is your favorite vampire?

Movie Review: Underworld Awakening

Underworld: Awakening

Release: 20 January 2012
Starring: Kate Beckinsale, Stephen Rea, Michael Ealy, and Theo James
Director: Måns Mårlind, Björn Stein
Genre: Action, Fantasy, Horror, Vampires, Werewolves
Length: 88 min.
Rating: R
Series: Fourth movie in Underworld franchise

Tagline:
Vengeance returns.

Basic Premise:
Humans have discovered the existence of vampires and lycans and will stop at nothing to eradicate both. Selene has no choice to fight if she wants to survive.

My Review:
This was an amazing installment to the Underworld franchise. It is a direct sequel to the second movie — Underworld: Evolution. But don’t worry too much if you haven’t seen the first two movies (though you should if you haven’t, because they are great), because the directors summarize both movies for you in the first ten minutes.

There’s not much to say about this movie that won’t give away the toy surprise. I will say the trailers don’t do it justice. The trailers actually turned me off. The only reason I went to see the movie is because it was part of the Underworld franchise. I’m glad I went. I want to see it again. If not for all of the other movies I have to see this weekend, I would.

The action and character drama of the first movie returns with a vengeance (hmmm quoting the tagline). I hope the directors won’t make us wait too long for the next installment. Oh yes, there will be another movie. The ending makes that quite obvious.

Speaking of endings. There’s nothing at the end of the credits. Feel free to leave once the credits start rolling.

Parents, there is a blood and people getting shot and things getting cut off and blood flying everywhere. Keep in mind that this movie earned its R rating with violence if you plan to take the kids.

Movie Review: Breaking Dawn Pt 1

Breaking Dawn, Part 1

Basic Premise
It’s time for Bella and Edward to tie the knot. The wedding is perfect but the honeymoon offers some surprises that may cost Bella her life.

Review
As I said in previous reviews, if you didn’t like the first three movies, why would you pay money for the fourth installment of the Twilight saga? If you did like the first three movies, then hey you’ll like this one too.

Big note — Don’t leave once the credits start rolling. Directly after the splash credits is a five minute (give or take) chunk of plot that gives a great lead-in for the second part due out November 2012. Yes, a year from now. Get over it.

Up to now, I would have to say this is my second favorite — Eclipse being my first. There was much more emotion in this movie from Stewart, which was great to see. I guess she’s growing as an actress. Thankfully, she got that blinking thing under control.

My only real complaint was the pacing of the movie. There are some parts that could have been sped up or trimmed to make the film move along a bit faster, which might have allowed them to join parts one and two into one long movie. But, I guess this way makes everyone more money.

My favorite part was the wedding reception, especially Charlie’s speech. Priceless and typical dad. Loved it.

Parents — this is obviously about Bella and Edward getting married and going away on a honeymoon, thus there will be a wedding night. Keep that in mind when you think of bringing kids. Just saying.

I end my review with a semi-spoiler-esque comment — James Cameron wants his ending back. Those who have seen the movies I’m referencing know what I’m talking about. Those who haven’t, don’t worry about it.

Previews:
The Darkest Hour – This looks like it could be good. This also looks like it could be very bad. Either way, I think I’ll wait for the DVD.

John Carter – I so want to see this. And no it has nothing to do with the fact that his outfit reminds me of He-Man, which I’m sure isn’t an accident. Okay, maybe not totally nothing, but it’s a small part of the reason. 😛

Hunger Games – Time for the next batch of young adult movies. Let’s see how it does. Not sure if I’ll see how it does in theaters or on DVD. According to the hubby, the trailer gives away the twist ending.

Snow White and The Huntsman – Kristen Stewart actually looks like she might be halfway decent in this role… well what the trailer showed of her. It was more intense on the queen than anything else. I will be seeing this. I love seeing new takes on old fairy tales.

Man on a Ledge – Interesting idea for a premise. Very shades of Inside Man. It’s just missing Denzel Washington. Not sure if this is movie theater material though.

Retro Movie Review: Netherbeast, Inc.

Netherbeast, Inc.

Year: 2007
Length: 1hr 28min
Starring: Steve Burns (vampire), Amy Davidson (human)

Vampire Weaknesses:
– Daylight
– Garlic
– Wooden stake through heart

Vampire Traits:
– Super strength (sometimes)
– Rapid healing
– Longevity
– Born a vampire
– Drink blood as well as eating human flesh

Personal Rating: Good

Basic Premise:
It’s a normal cubicle work day — Otto has to redo a report someone else flubbed, a business consultant is coming to the company to “re-organize”, and oh yeah his boss drove a stake through his co-worker’s chest. Otto’s life as a vampire just got interesting.

Review:
This was funny. I enjoyed this new take on the vampire legend/myth. Mixing vampirism with a normal, everyday cubicle work place was genius. It’s Office Space meets Lost Boys. If you enjoyed this movie, you’ll like this one too. It’s the same irreverent humor.

Movie Review: Fright Night

Fright Night (2011)

Basic Premise
Charley’s new neighbor is a vampire. It’s up to Charley to keep his mother and girlfriend — in fact the whole neighborhood — safe from this new menace.

End of Credits
Nothing there. You can roll out as soon as they start.

Review
This remake is as campy as the original. It’s not a revisioning of the same script. This is a new script, using the old premise as a jumping off point. Chris Sarandon even made a cameo that got a laugh out of the audience.

There were some great jump moments, but what made this movie for me was David Tennant. I will be totally honest and say I went to see the movie because he was in it. I might have seen it even if he wasn’t, but he made the movie for me. In fact, the movie didn’t start getting enjoyable until his character arrived <- That's a warning. This movie is a great way to pass the time. Not a must see, but still enjoyable. Colin Farrell made a great villain. Previews
Real Steel – I’m looking forward to this one.

John Carter – I see Hollywood has discovered the drawing power of steampunk. This isn’t strictly steampunk, but pretty close. Not sure if I find this interesting though. If there is nothing else coming out that week, I’ll probably go see it.

Killer Elite – In a few more weeks I will partake of Jason Statham goodness. 😀

Underworld: Awakening – I’m going to see this because I saw the other three. I do have an issue with what I’ve seen in the preview. It smacks too much of the disappointment I received after seeing Resident Evil: Extinction. We’ll see come January.

Paranormal Activity 3 – Did the other ones have a plot? Oh well, who cares. I didn’t see those, and I’m not interested in seeing this one.

The Thing – I’m not sure what I think about this movie. I do know I’m not going to be seeing it. Not because it might be bad or anything. The preview just didn’t catch my attention.

EXTRA
This falls under my quest to see and rate the vampire movies out there so here’s the other info:

Vampire Weaknesses
– Sunlight
– Stake through the heart
– Holy objects
– Garlic

Vampire Traits
– Messy eater
– Blood trade to turn victims into vampires
– Super strength and speed
– Facial/bodily deformations when vamping
– Heal most anything



Personal Rating
Good

Movie Review: Priest

Priest

Humans and vampires have warred since time immemorial. The humans finally won with the introduction of the priests — humans with special abilities and the only ones able to kill vampires effectively. No longer needed, the priests have lost their purpose and been cast to the fringes of society… until the vampire threat rises again.

Review
There’s nothing at the end of the credits. I just had to say that first. 😛

I enjoyed this movie. They are obviously setting themselves up for a sequel. There were some questions left unanswered that I will assume (giving them the benefit of the doubt) will be covered in the next movie installment. Those unanswered questions didn’t detract from my overall enjoyment, so I’ll give them a pass and grade up accordingly.

While I would normally suggest going to the source material for those answers, Priest by Hyung-Ming Woo and the movie have next to nothing in common. The name, the post apocalyptic setting, the social commentary on the church, and the vampires are about all the movie took from the manwha (Korean comic).

I bet you’re saying something like, “What about that cross on his forehead? That’s in the manwha.” Uh yeah, it is. But in the manwha, it’s a scar given to a man pegged as a heretic, not a tattoo that allies a father with the rest of his order. Let’s just say this movie was very freely adapted and leave it at that.

Karl Urban and Paul Bettany gave great performances. Lots of emotion. I loved watching those two. This movie is definitely about character development and plot. The special effects and action sequences were icing on the cake.

Parents, there is animated bloody dismemberment and some strong language. Lots of people, vampires, and other things getting killed. I think this movie is classified horror (I’m a poor judge for that genre).

Previews
Colombiana – This is a DVD movie. I like Zoe Saldana. She’s a great actress. But I can’t see spending theater prices to see this movie.

Transformers: Dark of the Moon – I think Michael Bay has outdone himself with this installment. The trailers look amazing. I only hope the actual movie looks as good.

Immortals – I am so THERE. This looks amazingly epic. I need to go brush up on my Theseus mythology.

Straw Gods – You know, normally I wouldn’t go for a movie like this — nice guy pushed too far and snaps. Shades of Deliverance. However, Alexander Skarsgård makes it all worth it.

Yellow Brick Road – A long time ago a whole town of people walked into the woods and disappeared without a trace. Some people hear something like that and use it as a warning to stay away from that town. Others hear something like that and decide they should investigate. I’m the former, so I guess I won’t be seeing this movie.

X-Men: First Class – I’m looking forward to this one. Oh hey, and in later news (hubby found this out), the dude with that thing on his chest that shoots out a red beam is supposed to be Havok. WTF?!

The Change-Up – Definitely a DVD movie. The more times I see the trailer, the more that fact is made evident.

Manga Review: A Bloody Kiss Tonight

A Bloody Kiss Tonight by Makoto Tateno

Publisher: DMP Doki Doki
Price: $12.95
Genre: Drama, Romance, Yaoi, Paranormal
Themes: High School, Reincarnation, Vampires, Forbidden Love
Rating: Mature 18+
Volumes: 1 Volume
ISBN: 978-1-56970-170-6

Note: Picture taken with my iPhone from my manga library.

Basic Premise:
Riku is a normal high school kid working a part time job at a flower shop. That’s where he meets Keito, a man who makes him want to run even as an instant attraction arises. Suddenly Riku’s nights are haunted with sexual dreams, calling him to Keito’s side. But Keito is more dangerous than Keito can imagine and that danger is directed at Riku.

Sex Shown:
Petting, kissing, suggestive positions, pressed bodies, fondling, invisible (though slightly outlined) penises, groping

Review:
Makoto-sensei!!!! Okay I got that out of my system.

As usual, Makoto-sensei delivers a fascinating story that I love re-reading over and over. Keito and Riku as such a wonderfully dysfunctional couple that you can’t help but root for them to get over it.

I do have to say that the cover and the book blurb suggests a menage that just isn’t there. There are two other vampires in the story besides Keito, but they have stories of their own.

Saisei’s story with Nanano is as entertainingly dysfunctional as Keito and Riku’s story. It’s only one small section and I would have loved to have seen more from these two.

The last vampire is Natsuhi, whose story is just a beginning rather than a full story. After reading it, you know it’s obvious there should be more but the book ends. Imagine anguished cry here. It’s such a great beginning and I want the rest.

Definitely a book that needs a second volume just so you can enjoy the characters even more.

, , ,

Movie Review: Vampires Suck

Vampires Suck

Basic Premise:
The parody people have gotten ahold of Twilight and New Moon and made their own version.

Review:
I’m kind of “eh” about the movie. It didn’t suck but it wasn’t side-splitting hilarity either. Not for me or the hubby, at any rate. The people a few seats ahead of us (maximum of ten people in the whole theater) were laughing almost through the whole movie.

There were some really funny points — both hilarious funny and wrong funny. Any anti-Twilight fan will more than likely love this movie just because it takes into account a lot of the complaints people have for the Twilight franchise in general.

My hubby, who actually bit the bullet and watched Twilight just so he would understand the jokes for this movie, thought it was pretty good. He’s seen other movies by this particular team (The Epic Movie, et al) and he says it is one of their better ones.

If you’ve seen the previews then you’ve seen a lot of the funnier sequences. There are a few more, but not many.

Parents there is a lot of sex humor. Be warned.

I have to say, if they ever decide to replace Kristen Stewart then Jenn Proske could fill the role of Bella Swan EASILY. Jenn had every one of Kristen’s mannerisms for Bella Swan down pat. It was easy to mistake the two after a while.

On a final note, I think the people from “How It Should Have Ended” did a better parody and they didn’t even have a budget (or a very small one). Check it out.

Previews:
Easy A – I’m looking forward to this. 😀

Due Date – I didn’t watch Hangover. I don’t think I’ll be watching this one either.

Paranormal Activity 2 – Movies that rely on the jump scare tactic are very boring to me. Plus, I didn’t see the first one.

My Soul to Take – It looks interesting. Looks can be deceiving though.

Unstoppable – Now this looks good. I don’t know if it is movie theater good but it looks good.

Machete – I’ve already commented on this one.

Retro Movie Review: Bitten

Bitten

Year: 2008
Length: 1 hr 28 min
Starring: Jason Mewes (human), Erica Cox (vampire)

Vampire Weaknesses:
– Sunlight
– Wooden stake through the heart
– Being turned isn’t 100%. Some people come back sentient and some don’t.

Vampire Traits:
– Fresh human blood only (no blood bags)
– Messy eater
– Daily feedings
– Feeding and sex are intermingled
– Super strength and speed

Personal Rating:
Okay

Basic Premise:
Jack is an overnight paramedic who spends his nights scrapping junkies off the sidewalks. His girlfriend dumped him and his thinks his life is a dead end. Then he meets Danica sprawled in an alley covered in blood. He takes her home, gets her clean then finds out she’s a vampire. Now he’s in a bind. She means a lot to him but she has a serious addiction to human blood. Can true love overcome a little vampirism?

Review:
Holy crap! It’s Jason Mewes. Yup Mr. Jay from Jay and Silent Bob himself. He did a pretty good job. It’s wasn’t a show stopping performance, but it wasn’t horrible either.

Romantic, Comedic Horror. How often do you see those three intertangled with each other? And this isn’t my sick sense of humor talking. They had Barney-esque music while Jason Mewes was cleaning up dead bodies. It was really funny.

I couldn’t take this seriously. I think half way through the production they decided to skip the horror and go for a comedy but they still had the vampire to deal with.

It’s highly sexualized, but like I said above, the sex is mixed with blood. It wasn’t horrible. Let’s just leave it at that.

Retro Movie Review: Let the Right One In

Let the Right One In

Year: 2008
Length: 1 hr 54 min
Starring: Lina Leandersson (vampire), Kåre Hedebrant (human)

Vampire Weaknesses:
– Animal reaction to blood
– Sunlight
– Cats

Vampire Traits:
– Super strength
– Flying
– One bite transference
– See in the dark


Personal Rating: Good

Basic Premise:
12 year old Oskar is the victim of bullies. He can only stand up for himself in his imagination. His only true defense against his tormentors is his refusal to show pain or cry out when they hit him. It seems he’ll be all alone to suffer in silence through his entire school career until Eli moves next door. She’s mysterious and a recluse, which is strange for a 12 year old… except she’s much older than twelve because she’s a vampire. Oskar is drawn to her but her life is more dangerous than he can ever imagine. He’ll have to decide if his new found crush is worth the risk.

Review:
This is a Swedish vampire film. It’s more quiet suspense or dramatic horror instead of the usual action-packed, shoot em up vampire fare. Except for the vampire aspect, this could be a normal slice-of-life, coming-of-age drama.

It was an interesting concept. The pacing is very mellow as you get to know Oskar and his life and he gets to know Eli and hers. It’s a typical tragic love story, even if the participants are twelve… sort of.

This movie was along the lines of Stephen King type horror. Everything seems normal and mundane except for the occasional weird happening. And then the secret is out and everything goes to pot. So I’d say fans of Salem’s Lot or Christine would probably enjoy this movie.

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