31 days of Halloween ~ Byzantium

So, I wanted to watch a horror film I knew nothing about.

Turn on Netflix. Search Halloween Movies. Find this little artistic gem.


This was beautifully told vampire film shot in Ireland. This movie is based on the play by Moira Buffini (she also wrote the screenplay) and tells the story of a mother, Clara (Gemma Arterton) and daughter, Eloise (Saoirse Ronan) vampire duo who have been on the run for 200 years.

Two mysterious women seek refuge in a run-down coastal resort. Clara meets lonely Noel, who provides shelter in his deserted guesthouse, Byzantium. Schoolgirl Eleanor befriends Frank and tells him their lethal secret.  As knowledge of their secret spreads, their past catches up on them with deathly consequence.

Director: Neil Jordan ( The Borgias, The Crying Game, Interview with a Vampire:The Vampire Chronicles)

Starring: Saoirse Ronan ( Brooklyn, Lovely Bones, How I Live Now)

Gemma Arterton ( Prince of Persia, Hansel & Gretel, Clash of the Titans)

I liked this movie. It wasn’t the blood guts & gore slasher I am often seeking out. It was a nicely done vampire chronicle. I liked their back story of how the vampires came about. I liked the mother daughter struggle for independence in their co-dependent relationship. Obviously I love seeing strong scripts / role for females.

Gemma, Clara, was stunning, exciting and although slightly sociopathic like all good vampires, I felt empathy for her. Forced into brothel as child. Struggling to survive. Providing for her daughter that she secretly tucked into an affluent orphanage for a safe proper upbringing. Becoming a vampire was her road to freedom. Sure she turned her into a vampire at 16…But I assume Clara was just trying to liberate her daughter in the only way she knew how. AND at least she’d be young and fabulous forever. Like a supernatural Chris Jenner…right?

Saoirse Ronan, Eloise was intriguing with her Lestat- ish internal torment and urber excellent talent for music. That vampire chick could play the piano! But conflicted by guilt of her blood sucking survival and  her mother’s prostitution ways (I guess old habits die hard) Eloise yearned for a better way to live. Now if she was smart and lived in the time of youtube she could have marketed her child prodigy  piano skills to world  and created a new way of life for her and her mom. Forever reinventing her child prodigy platform forever! So many child stars would kill for that status…movie idea…

Obviously that is not what happened…

This is an excellent post Halloween morning watch. Grab a Latte, cheeseburger and or whatever hangover cure need be avail. Ease on into the reality that it’s time to hang up the cape, the fangs, the pimp and ho gear etc til next year.


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