Jim Jarmusch’s latest film takes the vampire genre and boils it down to an element not seen so often these days: vampires as the ultimate hipsters, cruising around the world causally dropping famous names while sneakily scoring their blood from blood banks rather than the necks of passing strangers.
It works in large part thanks to the cast: Adam (Tom Hiddleston) is a musician hiding out in the ruins of Detroit, a master craftsman with nothing but contempt for his audience, balanced out by an equal contempt for himself. His partner, Eve (Tilda Swinton), is happy in Tangiers, but is drawn to him when she sees how down he is. They meet up, hang out, he complains about pollution but is happy to see her, she enjoys just hanging out with him, and while things eventually do go off the rails slightly – Adam’s human sidekick, Ian (Anton Yelchin), and Eve’s vampire sister, Ava (Mia Wasikowska), have their parts to play there – this is a film that’s much more about capturing a feeling than any plot-driven mechanics. It’s about two people against a world they’re kind of bored with, and while this easily could have come off as pretentious scenester wank, Hiddleston – and especially Swinton – ironically play their vampires with enough warmth and life to make their massive ennui something worth getting in on.
Written by Anthony Morris