While 30 Days of Night is an entertaining and well-conceived flick, it suffers pretty heavily from relying on short-sighted “thrills” and from being executed in an annoyingly poor fashion.
I can list of a bunch of details in the movie that range from being nonsensical to outlandishly retarded. I probably will, in fact. But it’s still a pretty enjoyable movie. The actors do a good job with what they’ve got to work with. The vampires are creepy and will leave you anxious to see them be killed. The visual effects are pretty darn good, so the gore is nice and gory.
I don’t really want to just list out all of the ways this movie sucked, so I’ll try to describe the flaws without going into specifics:
- After the first part of the titular “30 days of night” is over with and the audience has “gotten” that the town has been plunged into a month of complete darkness, the movie becomes extraordinarily well-lit. I understand that things have to be visible to the movie-goer, but come on. Pitch Black does it much better.
- The vampires are REALLY annoying. Way too much screeching. Not nearly enough of them die. And worst of all, they are apparently too lazy to actually search any of the houses in the small town they invade. If this had something to do with how vampires can’t cross the threshold of a home, it wasn’t ever mentioned (They do actually go into some houses, anyway. But I’m pretty sure a small group of blind men could have found all of the human survivors in hiding).
- The end of the movie is a fairly large departure from how the rest of the movie plays out, which you might enjoy and might not. Regardless, Josh Hartnett goes Blade on the vampires’ asses, kicks the ass of the leader, and then lets the rest go so that he can mope about until the sun turns him into ash. Badly. Worst turning-into-ash scene ever, try 1408 or Interview With the Vampire instead.
- That senile guy? Good luck finding out what happens to him. The confident mountain man? He apparently survives lighting a box of dynamite on fire so that he can be killed by vampires. It might have been a box of flares, but there was an explosion and it was a bit too big to have been caused by flares (Although much too small to have been caused by a crate of TNT). He is, however, basically the only character to kill a vampire without using that axe.
- As far as the whole “hiding from vampires” theme goes, it is apparently very easy to do. Even when walking around in the open, down what is apparently the only street in town.
- The editing looked like it needed some work. The movie kept cutting to scenes that referenced something that had just happened that you didn’t get to see.
So, yeah, the movie was a bit of a let-down. It’s basically a brainless action flick that thinks it’s a suspense-laden drama (Or vice versa?). Definitely has some really good moments, but I was hoping to see more than “moments” of a great movie when I went to watch it.