Sundance 2011: Three Clips From Shunji Iwai's VAMPIRE

Todd Brown, Founder and Editor
Anyone familiar with the work of director Shunji Iwai could very well have told you not to expect anything like a traditional horror film from his latest work, Vampire. Iwai is best know for introspective, philosophical work and while he has ranged into genre territory in the passt he always puts his own unique stamp on things. Was that likely to change now that he is working in English for the first time? Nope. Not a bit. A trio of clips have been released from the picture and they look like vintage Iwai to these eyes. Check them below.

Not all of those amongst us who crave blood are vampires, and not all vampires crave blood. For those of you expecting anything remotely resembling Twilight, Nosferatu, or Bela Lugosi, Vampire may not be your cup of the red elixir of life. . . . Simply put, Vampire gives new meaning to the word "vampire."

Simon seems like a fairly normal, average young man who's devoted to his teaching job and ailing mother. Underneath the surface, however, things are not what they seem. Simon hunts through online chat rooms and message boards, searching for the perfect girl: beautiful, shy, and suicidal. Simon has a particular condition: he is compelled to drink blood.

Acclaimed Japanese director Iwai Shunji demonstrates that he is a master of cinematic storytelling in any language. Breathtaking, lyrical camera movement and unconventional framing capture beautifully macabre images while the evocative music and sound design complete the sensory tour de force. The terrific ensemble cast stretches out of its comfort zone and syncs up perfectly with Iwai's dark vision, which explores the essence of existence and what drives some to end it.
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