by Jesus Ibarra
Special coupon for Dinuba Platinum Theatre at the end of this review.
What if arguably one of our best Presidents turned out to be a vampire hunter? Well now we know what that would look like in the film adaptation of the book by the same name. Benjamin Walker has the unfortunate task of selling Lincoln as not only a brilliant passionate legal mind but also a strong kickass vampire hunter, and I have to say he pulled it off. And the other scene stealer in this movie was Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Lincoln’s love interest Mary Todd. She was the best actor in this movie and gave the most believable performance, even with a not so great script. The most basic plot of this movie, if you haven’t seen the trailers, is that after a vampire kills Lincoln’s mother he vows to hunt them down for a chance to kill his mother’s murder.
The alternate history set by the film is interesting, and yes they include the Civil War in the movie as a vampire attempt to keep the south under their control. The visual set pieces and fight sequences were pretty insane if not ridiculous, but they were so captivating and fun that I didn’t care if what the people were doing should have killed them. Overall it’s a fun film to go watch when you are in the mood for some action mixed with some alternate historical events.
Now the film did have some problems. First the beginning was so random, and extremely hard to follow if you weren’t paying incredibly close attention, and even that didn’t help. What I mean by that is that instead of showing us some things the film just jumped to new points in the story at random and it was a bit jarring. I don’t know if it was the editing or the script, but regardless it pulled me out of the movie.
The other thing that really bothered me was that the film changed Lincoln’s motivation for wanting to free the slaves and abolish the practice. In real life everyone (mostly everyone) knows that Lincoln actually thought that slavery was a bad thing and thought all people should be free. In the movie, his motivation is to free slaves to stop vampires, because they use slavery the institution as a source for food. Now that concept I loved because it is so dark, sad, and fitting for evil vampires. It also reinforces how messed up slavery was that people were considered property and that them being killed and eaten wouldn’t be questioned. But it just felt weird to see Lincoln fighting the same fight for different reasons. I guess that comes with the alternate history.
Other than those two things, the film wasn’t bad at all and really enjoyable. The first hour may drag on a bit, but after things get going it gets really good. And ultimately it’s freaking Abraham Lincoln killing vampires, I don’t know about you but that to me that sounds really cool.
This movie is rated R for violence and some strong language.
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is now playing at Dinuba Platinum Theatres 6. Showtimes can be found on their website.