Re:View – ‘Daybreakers’
The poster says it’s a cross between ‘The Matrix’ and ’28 Days Later’ (because all films have to be the love-child of two other films these days) but it’s closer in tone to Kathryn Bigelow’s ‘Near Dark’. Ethan Hawke is a hematologist at the company harvesting humans for blood in a world overrun with vampires, and supplies are running out. The invention of a blood substitute could solve the problem, but then evil Sam Neill, all glittering eyes and lowered brows, won’t get to sell the real stuff to high-end customers. Hawke’s avoiding human plasma on moral grounds, but risks degenerating into a bat without the required corpuscles, so he teams with humans to fight back.
It’s a well-told tale, but I do wonder how many more twists they can wring out of the vampire legends without adding significantly to them. This actually feels like a story of economics forced to indulge in action sequences when Sam would rather be giving us a Powerpoint presentation on salesmanship, but it’s handsomely mounted without being too taxing, and there are nice touches, like the car that’s adapted for day driving and the coffee/blood blended takeaways. Quite why the future has been retrofitted to 1940s fashionwear when all the architecture is futuristic is anyone’s guess, but that’s the kind of film it is. Chrysler product placement pokes you in the eye every few minutes, and some of the CGI work looks fairly crummy on home video.