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Only Lovers Left Alive
Whiteface
zodgory
As someone who's largely apathetic about vampires stemming from a childhood where I was irrationally terrified of them (and still sleep with the covers up to my neck out of habit), I'm surprised by how much I liked this movie. "Liked" being the operative word here. I'm not rushing out to see it again in theaters. I don't have the DVD pre-ordered on Amazon (though I wouldn't mind getting my hands on that soundtrack). I just found it overall charming.

I'm now looking forward to devouring more of Jarmusch's work as my only other experience with him had been Broken Flowers which I found to be a snooze until the last five minutes. Seeing what he's like when he's on his game gives me a renewed confidence in actually exploring his other films. Or at least the recommended ones.


I would say part of the reason I liked this film despite my heavy bias against those blood sucking immortals is that the plot doesn't really dwell on the fact that these people are centuries old. It's never hamfistedly explained to us, and the audience picks up on things here and there. I love this since vampire lore has been part of our culture for so many years and a majority of people understand the basics so those basics are shown rather than told to us. It's little things like a concern about the sun or fangs popping out after a particularly good drink of blood that set the atmosphere. And what a lovely atmosphere it is (though I'm also not adverse to more showy displays like in Blade [the only other vampire films I care for] where blood pours from the sprinklers and takes the human ravers by surprise).

I wish I was articulate enough to spin some pretty analogy about the symbolism in setting this film in post-recession Detroit. How the decay of the city continues to eat away at its own triumphant beginnings and better times and how all of this continues to send Adam (Hiddleston) into a sort of suicidal contemplation of his too long existence. How he's basically a hipster shit who refers to humans as "zombies". Stuff like that.

And now that I've gotten most of my positive ramblings out of the way, it's time for my incoherent ranting.

FUCK. THOSE. WIGS.

Is the weight of their existence so much that vampires can't be bothered to try and run a brush through their hair every once in awhile? Actually, I only took issue with Hiddleston's wig. With the other characters, I adjusted to the strange hair decisions, but Hiddleston's is just so damn distracting. It might be a hairline thing or maybe I think his head is unsuited for rat's nests.

Speaking of things that are unsuited to each other, I think Hiddleston was miscast. Adam is a very morose character, and I found Hiddleston to be struggling with that at times. He also needs to work on his deadpan delivery because some of his lines fell flat. It wasn't enough to derail the film for me, but it was enough to take me out at times.

All in all a good day at the theater. Now I must be off to ironically download music that Adam wouldn't want me getting my hands on until it was absolutely finished.

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