Thursday, May 31, 2012

Phil's Flashbacks: Phil watches BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER (1992)-May 27, 2012

So I was reminiscing earlier today about all the films I have seen in my lifetime. One of those films I remembered seeing was on Comcast On Demand for free. So I treated myself a stroll down memory lane and I watched the film BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER from 1992.

Theatrical Movie Poster (1992)
The film stars Kristy Swanson as Buffy, your average, ordinary teenager. She's the most popular girl in school, she's dating the captain of the basketball team, and likes to go shopping with all her friends at the mall. Yup things are normal for Buffy, until a strange, mysterious man named Merrick (Donald Sutherland) shows up and informs her that she is the chosen one dubbed the "Slayer" who must stops a group of vampires led by the powerful and old vampire Lothos (Rutger Hauer) from taking over Los Angeles.  While trying to keep her normal life intact, she trains in hiding with Merrick and soon she begins to mature and starts to take life more seriously. With this new found maturity, her friends abandoned her, leaving Buffy to bond with the town's outcast Pike (Luke Perry). Soon they're the only thing that stands between Merrick and his vampire gang and the extinction of the human race.

The film also stars Paul Reubens, David Arquette, Stephen Root, Natasha Gregson Wagner, Tom Jane, Randall Batinkoff, Candy Clark, Sasha Jensen, and Hilary Swank! Also look for uncredited appearances by Ricki Lake, Seth Green, and Ben Affleck!

Creator Josh Whedon's script for the film was severely re-written to make the film "lighter." In the original script, Buffy burns down the school gym that the dance is being held in, in an effort to destroy the vampires. Also, Whedon was so frustrated by how much of his vision was being mishandled and how much of it was being rewritten that he eventually left the set during production and never came back. In 1999, Dark Horse Comics released a graphic novel adaptation of Whedon's original script under the title The Origin.

The film was also the debut for several big name Hollywood stars. This was future Oscar winner Hilary Swank's first film. Also look for Ben Affleck as a basketball player in one scene. Believe it or not, Seth Green has an three second uncredited cameo as a short red haired vampire. Ricki Lake also makes an uncredited cameo as Charlotte, a waitress in the scene where Pike and Buffy officially meet for the first time. Paul "Pee-Wee Herman" Reubens, who portrays vampire Amilyn, resurfaced to the public with this film after being arrested for indecent exposure in an adult theater in Sarasota, Florida (he also completely improvised his death scene, which was very comedic).

The film was released by 20th Century Fox on July 31, 1992 and grossed $16,624,456 in the United States. It received mixed reviews from critics and audiences, but it has since gone on to become a cult film. In 2009, the magazine The Hollywood Reporter reported that a revision/relaunch of a BUFFY movie was planned without Whedon having any involvement in it. In 2011, a script written by Whit Anderson was rejected by its producers and a search for a new screenwriter was announced.

BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER is a flawed film, but it's still a hoot to watch, With it's absurd story and decent, if not over, acting, it's interesting to see how the BUFFY legacy began. While the show is far superior, this is a fun examination of a future pop culture phenomenon. Four out of five stars!

BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER is currently available on both Blu-Ray and DVD. To purchase a copy, visit your local retailer or visit the Amazon website at

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

1 comment:

  1. Extremely apt description; this is exactly how I feel about this film!