7.07.2005

"Death By Stereo"

Alex Winters, star of MTV’s “Idiot Box,” the “Bill and Ted" movies and that 80’s horror/comedy classic that gave us both Coreys best work to date, “The Lost Boys” was quoted in an interview around the time of the release of the movie in ’86 as saying-

“Always remain in focus, have a very definite understanding of what your values and beliefs are, and don't go off that track for any reason, or you're lost.”

I keep these words on a plaque above my computer in my office (it’s a ¾ cubicle really), and never had these words had more resonance and meaning then when I read Daniella’s post from two days ago calling me out on my lack of postings to this “blog.” For those of you who forget or who are just joining us I have posted it here for you…

3. in an attempt to single out & shame our contributorship (always a GREAT idea), I would like to note that would-be contributor gregg has been promising to write about one of his favorite songs from a movie, a little ditty called cry little sister (thou shalt not...) from that california vampire classic, the lost boys. perhaps we can shame him into finally writing it. come on. you know you want to.*

Never one to back down from a challenge, especially when my penchant for cheese (an Achilles heel), is exposed and being well versed in the intricacies of SHAME I have no choice but to consider the proverbial gauntlet thrown and must defend the honor of what is apparently my “favorite song from a movie” Consider the line toed.

First Riddle Me This:
What original songs have other vampire movies given us over the last 20 years?
Blade- none of note
Interview With The Vampire-none of note
Francis Ford Coppola’s Dracula- none of note
Vampire Hunter D- none of note
Buffy The Vampire Layer/Muffy the Vampire Layer- unfortunately…none of note

“Cry Little Sister” (Thou Shall Not), far from being my favorite song from a movie and far from being the greatest movie soundtrack song in the history of movie soundtrack songs may hold title to being the greatest song from a vampire movie soundtrack. Much better than Bach’s clichéd and tired Toccata & Fugue in D minor that was associated with the aristocratic euro-trash sensibilities of Bram Stoker's Dracula for countless decades and became the standard “vamp song," “Cry Little Sister’s” brilliance is not in the lyrics, which are sophomoric at best and riddled with incestuous undertones, but rather in a certain irony it possesses that captures the vision that director Joel Schumacher had for the film and what he and (Lost Boys) ultimately brought to the vampire mythology as a whole. Bear with me...

What Joel Schumacher did with vampires in the film “Lost Boys” was create something totally original that at the same time enjoyed a time-honored tradition. So his Vampires are both classical-vampiric and original. Schumacher’s Vampires have the power of altering reality (David makes Michael think he is eating maggots and worms) Vampires have ultra healing powers- Holy Water and a stake through the heart still kill them but…Garlic doesn’t work. They don’t sleep in coffins, they hang upside down like bats. Full-fledged vampires cannot go out in sunlight but vampire initiates can as long as they wear shades. Schumacher was the first to exploit vampires flying in human form. Before The Lost Boys, vampires turned into bats or mist (who can forget the chilling scene where they all leap into the mist as “Thou Shall Not Kill” reverberates in our ears!!!), to be able to fly. The Lost Boys has the climactic fight between Michael and David occurring in mid air, this was the first film to use such effects. In order to become a vampire initiate you need to drink a vampire’s blood (Michael does so from a wine bottle) but in order to become a full vampire you must also make a first kill. No biting necessary.

“Cry Little Sister” embodies this mixture of honoring the classic tradition while at the same time forging new ground. A straight up rock ballad that uses a boys choir as back up to its full hauntingly, chilling effect. Both the song and the movie are directed at a teenage audience, entrenched in youth culture and full of teen angst. That is it’s appeal- it captures perfectly the emotional problems of the teen characters in the film as well as being both funny and tense.


P.S. I would also like to point out that Echo and the Bunnymen do a good cover of the Doors' "People Are Strange"and Roger Daltrey does an equally fine cover of Elton Johns' "Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me".

3 Comments:

Blogger d said...

ha ha ha ha ha, nice one. PS that cover of don't let the sun go down on me SUCKS!

4:11 PM, July 07, 2005  
Blogger Gimp78 said...

I know it sucks. The song itself sucks- but once again- Irony of ironies.

4:28 PM, July 07, 2005  
Blogger d said...

wait...what about the arena rock "rest in peace" from buffy, the vampire slayer? you can't deny it's power OR that you lip synch to it in the privacy of your home.

5:07 PM, July 08, 2005  

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