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Vampire’s Kiss

Year: 1989
Production Co: Magellan Pictures
Studio: MGM
Director: Robert Bierman
Cast: Nicolas Cage, Maria Conhita Alonso, Jennifer Beals
Spoiler
Spoiler!
I thought this was just a silly romantic comedy, but it was a quite serious movie that - from what I can deduce in bulletin boards - divided those who saw it. Some saw it as an unfunny misfire (apparently expecting a comedy) many saw it as a veiled masterpiece.

The plot makes it the sort of thing you'd have to revisit to see the clues you missed. There is an answer in there somewhere, and the truth behind the heroes fantasy is alluded to only in passing and only a few times.

Nasty literary agent Cage is convinced that a woman he brings back to his New York pad for a one night stand is a vampire, and after biting him, makes him one too. We see him unravel amid the people around him who are privy to the meltdown; a girl in his office (Alonso) he seems hell bent on terrorising, his therapist and the sometime girlfriend he can't stop pushing away.

As he gets crazier and his life spirals more out of control, extending to raping the harried girl at his office (and swinging right away from the comedy you thought it was), we're finally shown the truth. He's apparently and for reasons that aren't clear (another reason a second viewing would help) simply lost his mind, thinking he's turned into a vampire - buying plastic teeth, catching pigeons in the park to eat, trashing his apartment and sleeping under an overturned sofa because he has no coffin.

In a Lynchian twist, we learn which parts of his life he's completely imagined in a bizarre climax that only partly explains things.

The accent Cage puts on to sound toffee-nosed is part of the in-joke of the movie but is supremely irritating, sounding like a bad valley girl rip-off. It's never clear what the movie's trying to say, and either a broader comedy or a more serious mindfuck thriller would have helped clarify the story.

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