Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

2012

Directed by Timur Bekmambetov – Written by Seth Grahame-Smith

Starring: Benjamin Walker, Dominic Cooper, Anthony Mackie and Mary Elizabeth Winstead

Let’s face it. Tim Burton hasn’t been a top director since the late 80s / early 90s, that’s over 20 years ago, and although he hasn’t directed this one he has had his name plastered all over it – in a similar fashion to The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993). The above comment is fact, but I feel maybe his career may take an upward turn with the upcoming release of Frankenweenie later this year.

So we have Burton, a name that brings unjustified anticipation toward a film, in the producer chair. In the director chair is Timur Bekmambetov, director of Night Watch (2004), Day Watch (2006) and Wanted (2008), this all rings good. Writing is Seth Grahame-Smith, converting his novel of the same name in to a screenplay the same year he pens Dark Shadows (2012); he is also set to be writing the sequel to the much loved Beetlejuice (1988), we know Burton likes his partnerships, though his name hasn’t been solidly linked to this film yet.

So really all indications point to a mediocre film.

Now, I haven’t read the book, but all accounts from people who have tell me that the film doesn’t follow the novel despite being written by the same person. Instantly everybody who enjoyed the book and is watching for that reason is going to dislike this.

And for us who haven’t read the precursor? Nothing to get excited about either. Acting was very middle ground, nothing to write about on either side of the spectrum. The half an hour or so where they stop the vampire story to show Lincoln’s career in politics is just jammed in. Narration from his diary is annoying like all narration. Pacing is too fast. Dialogue is lacking. Script is uneven. At points the action gets clouded by sand or smoke which makes things difficult to see, could have been a decent tool but it just ends up with you trying a bit too hard to see what is going on.

Blood and gore is over done to over compensate for the fact everything is lacking, it doesn’t work. Though there is an upside to be found in some of the fights and action sequences, they’re pretty good but you’re soon dragged back in to a dull film. Sadly most audience members consider decent action all you need for a great film – idiots.

Overall the film is just lifeless, ba dum tss!

3/10

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