The film 30 Days of Night, directed by David Slade, takes place in the small and isolated town of Barrow, Alaska. The town is preparing itself for a full month of darkness, or "30 days of night". A stranger arrives to Barrow via boat and begins to terrorize the town by cutting off their power, transportation etcetera. Eventually, the town is overrun with vampires and a feeding spree ensues. A small group of survivors attempt to make it until the safety of dawn break on the 30th day.

The film is very dark, graphic, and makes no mistake in portraying these feasting creatures as vampires. Despite the film being mainstream and relatively new (released in 2007), these "vampires" differ greatly from how vampires are usually portrayed in modern cinema. They have been completely desexualized. They have been made heavily unattractive, grotesque and even animalistic. Even the language that they speak in the film is very abrasive and almost uncomfortable to listen to. The majority of vampire related films display them in an entirely different light. For example, the vampires in the Twilight, Underworld and Blade Trilogies are all overly sexualized, both the males and the females. They're well kept, intelligent, sophisticated and generally painfully attractive in addition to being mesmerizing. This is very much not the case in the film 30 Days of Night. Although differing in many important characteristics, they happen to share some similarities. These vampires do feed on the blood of their human victims, and an unfinished kill does result in that victim eventually becoming a vampire.

Another significant difference between the vampires of 30 Days of Night and the vampires of other mainstream films, is the lack of religion. There is no holy water, no garlic, no crosses, and simply no mention of any sort of religious deterrent. Although religion in vampire related films folklore is not as prominent as it may have been, it is generally still there in some aspect. There is one mention of religion, in what ends up being a quite impactful scene in the film. A young girl is being surrounded and tormented by a group of these vampires and says to herself in a shaky, terrified breath "Oh God". One of the vampires (the distinct leader of the group) takes a moment to look up at the dark, empty sky, gazes back down into the eyes of his soon to be victim and says to her "God? No God". It feels as is he is denouncing any sort of religious ties that are generally connected to vampirism.

These are merely a few examples of how different the vampires in 30 Days of Night are portrayed when compared to the over-sexualized vampires of today's cinema. Although different, this specific take on the vampire was refreshingly dark, and one that is hopefully revisited in future films.



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