I thought that I'd really like Interview With The Vampire. I mean, I really like the film, where Tom Cruise's hilarious, nihilist Lestat is the perfect foil for Brad Pitt's uptight but kind of soulful Louis, and then Antonio Banderas is also there, being all hot.
At first I thought it was just a combination of personal preferences. The language is a little bit... overdone and tries SO hard to have 'Meaning' that I think a lot of the time it falls flat. I've also come to understand that I enjoy my vampires to be ever so slightly bloodthirsty and, well, non-apologetic about who they are and what they have to do. It's why I prefer Eric Northman to Bill Compton (well, not the only reason), Dracula to, I don't know, that Edward guy (again, not the only reason. Obviously). Essentially I like my vampires to be what they are instead of being fucking tortured all the time, which is, I guess, the difference that Rice tries to set up between Louis and Lestat.
A note: I feel like, in the vampire canon, this is somewhat of a first in creating vampires that are sympathetic, rather than utterly evil creatures. I think, therefore, that it can be respected for a shifting in the vampire tide from the monstrous side of vampires to the human, and its influence can't be underestimated. No Interview With The Vampire? No Twilight. Ok, that's a bad example- no True Blood? No Angel in Buffy. No sort of nice, identifiable vampires, ever. So it's got that going for it, at least.
But getting back to its problems. I couldn't quite figure out why I wasn't enjoying the book, since all the same things as in the film were happening and, you know, Brad Pitt was basically constantly in my head! I thought it was maybe the language (SO overdone. I can't emphasise that enough) or the location of the reading (the majority of which happened on the tube on the way to and from London. Which wasn't the MOST fun I've ever had...) but somewhere in Part 3, it hit me: the book is completely and utterly humourless. I'm not even kidding (just as NO ONE in this book was, ever): As the narrator, Louis is unbelievably miserable and guilt ridden and regretful, and that's all he is. I mean, I get it- he's in a state of being where he has to kill humans to live and he feels bad about that, his maker is an unthinking moron and he accidentally causes a child to become a vampire. He's got a lot to be unhappy about, but NO ONE is that unhappy, all the time! I mean, come ON, Louis, crack a joke every once in a while, why dontcha?!
Louis' default facial expression. Miserable bastard.
To be entirely fair, if I'd read this when I was about 15, I would have been like 'oh my GOSH, it's so DEEP!' and been kind of obsessed with it. But that's ok, because teenagers are idiots. No, I'm afraid I'm going to stick to the movie with this one, which is still acceptable because, although Louis is still doing his tortured thing in it, because we're not just in his (emo) head, it's ok to see the things Lestat does as funny, and all is well and I don't want to punch anyone for not CHEERING THE FUCK UP. And as for my vampires, I'll take them blonde and naughty, thank you very much.
I can't thank you enough for that gif of Alexander Skarsgaard's butt. *sigh* I could look at that all day.ReplyDelete
I did enjoy Interview, but like you, I prefer my vampires to be bad boys. :)
Oh, you're so welcome! It's actually the longest I've spent looking for a gif (I'd seen it but not bookmarked it) so I'm glad I put the extra effort in now! :)Delete
YAY for bad vampires! I definitely could have enjoyed this if I hadn't... evolved my vampire tastes. Let's say.
"the book is completely and utterly humourless. I'm not even kidding (just as NO ONE in this book was, ever)" - ZINGReplyDelete
I haven't read this. Or seen the movie. I'm thinking I'll have to skip the book and maaaaaybe see the movie. We'll see. I appreciate the whole idea of Rice changing vampires so they're sympathetic and tortured instead of just evil. Well I sort of appreciate it cos, as you said, Twilight, but still. It's cool to take a well-known creature and turn it around. But liking the idea and liking the execution don't always go together.
"liking the idea and liking the execution don't always go together." EXACTLY. I mean, sort of made up that she like 'invented' the tortured vampire, but I can't think of anyone having done it earlier, so let's go with that. So I totally appreciate that, but not the book at all, really! JUST THROW IN A JOKE ANNE, GOD!Delete
The movie really is pretty good though. Although I'm wondering if I saw it now would I just be constantly rolling my eyes at Louis? Maybe. But anyway, it's hot. Brad Pitt! Antonio Banderas! Tom Cruise if he floats your boat...
Is Brad Pitt shirtless in this? I find I like him a lot better when he's not wearing a shirt.Delete
... I really don't know! Gee, I'd better investigate for you by watching it again. What a drag. *MASSIVE GRIN AND THIMBS UP*Delete
ALLEY FLY OUT TO CHICAGO AND WE WILL WATCH THIS MOVIEDelete
You guys basically all just need to come to Chicago.
Also I'm like 80% sure he isn't shirtless.
I'll come to Chicago!!!Delete
I agree with the 80% sureness cause he is just kind of dressed in blouses and whatnot all the time. And his chest would be awfully pasty...
Tell you what, I'll check and report back, and of there's no toplessness I'll watch Troy, which is TERRIBLE but brad Pitt looks like a GOD in it. So there's that.
I haven't seen it, either! Can I come??Delete
Pasty men in blouses, you say? RAWRR.
lol jk jk
YES, we need to all go to Chicago and watch ALL THE MOVIES. Even if Brad Pitt wears a shirt the whole vampire movie.Delete
LET'S DO ITTTTTTTT! *packs suitcase, awaits further instruction*Delete
Um, I own Troy on DVD, Laura, and it is GLORIOUS, so whatever. We can watch that too.Delete
MY APT IS EASILY ACCESSIBLY VIA THE TRANSIT THAT LEAVES FROM THE AIRPORT. You all will have nooo problem.
Come on Alice, it is not glorious. Apart from that bodyyyyy. Mmmmm.Delete
THIS IS GOOD TO KNOW! *checks flights, cries at the prices* Dude, it's REALLY expensive to fly to Chicago. For no apparent reason!
Great review! I love all of Anne Rice's books. I highly recommend the book about Lestat and the one about Armand. They are much less whiny and apologetic for what they are. More the bad boy vampire you are looking for. :)ReplyDelete
But I have to say, I prefer my vampires Eric Northman-like as well. :)
Books about Lestat and Armand definitely SOUND like they'd be less whiny. I feel like it would be interesting to see things from Lestat's perspective, but... that *writing*. I don't know. If I see a cheap copy of The Vampire Lestat, I guess I would consider buying it. Maybe.Delete
Eric Northman is the epitome of vampirehood. He's what all vampires should aspire to be. Just like Skarsgard is what all men should aspire to be. Although I guess they can't do anything about the height thing...
I HAVE A POST KIND OF ABOUT THIS. So I'm just gonna quote that:ReplyDelete
"Interview With the Vampire, the only Anne Rice I was able to make it through. This book is kickass when you're 12, and pretty decent when you're older, although I've just been skimming it, so maybe it drags or is too whiny or something. The point is: it takes place in the past, which means it's got historical stuff (+1), it has an awesome female character, Claudia (+1), and it's not overly long (+5billion)."
Aside from that, I love how in the movie, Brad Pitt's being all pseudo-deep and mopey and Lestat's like "OMG GET OVER YOURSELF." It makes me giggle.
Also I ship Louis and Claudia and IT IS AWKWARD because they aged her in the movie but she's STILL only like ten years old, but she's actually way older and — and — whatever, it's fine!
Oh yeah, I forgot to add that thing that I HATE historical fiction! Daaaamn, this book really wasn't for me...Delete
Claudia is preeeetty awesome though, and I feel waaaay sorry for her being all teeny but with a wise wise brain. I CAN'T SHIP HER AND LOUIS THOUGH, because NO! Just, instinctively wrong. Also I cant say ship in a way that's convincing to myself. Sorry.
YES to the movie though. Tom cruise is all funny, which makes Louis' moping fiiiine, whereas in the book hes just like 'lestat was being stupid so I just thought some really sad and boring thoughts. I am so lame." etc
I have been using this term since 1998. So...there's that.Delete
I don't think that YOU should stop saying it, just that I can't! Well, I can, but then I just kind of roll my eyes at myself? But if you suddenly stopped saying it, it would FREAK ME OUT!Delete
Okay, I am officially never reading this book. It sounds not at all like my cup of tea. Excellent review, though! Very convincing. (And a very glorious GIF selection.)ReplyDelete
Have you seen the show Being Human? I think I like it even better than True Blood. (Although I haven't seen the most recent season...)
Ohhh, Being Human! Mitchell frickin' rocks (especially when he finally gets his bad boy thing going on) - dude looks GOOD in hobo gloves. Also, Daisy is super-cool and funny and a total sexpot. Yes yes yes, where did I put that box set? *Has no idea where she put that box set* *turns house upside down*Delete
Good girl Rayna. Good girl. *pats you on the head* *receives much deserved smack*Delete
I haven't seen Being Human guys! But that girl from Sugar Rush (Sugar, in fact!) is in it, I believe, and I like her, and it looks really good, and I just haven't ever watched it cause I'm stupid!
But... I can't support anything being better than True Blood. Except Breaking Bad, but that's a completely different thing!
Yup, that's the one! I really need to re-watch TB1+2 so I can get stuck into seasons 3+4. I get so behind, then I have to wait for the box sets, then THEY have to wait in line behind another twelve million box sets... I need a better system. :(Delete
I read this post and I was like, 'Yes, Interview with the Vampire... yes, excellent gif of Banderas... yes, excellent gif of Louis's cheerful face... yes, excellent points... *nods wisely*... most excellent all round in fact... *gets to end*... ZOMG THIS IS THE BEST POST EVER I SHALL BOOKMARK IT AT ONCE!'ReplyDelete
About the only bit of that movie I didn't like was Lestat dancing around the house with little Claudia's plague-ridden dead mother. That was gross. The rest was awesome! And yes, I was a bit obsessed at 13, because That's What Tortured Depressive Girls Do. Now I mostly watch for the hotness. :D
That ass. Daaaaaymn. I burn, I pine, I perish...Delete
Anyway. Soooo the Lestat dancing with the corpse thing is actually an example I had of the film being funnier than the book! Cause it's definitely gross, and yet sort of funny, and it does also happen in the book and Louis says something emo about it and I'm like 'yes, yes, but I bet it LOOKED hilaaaarious!' Cause I'm horrid. But I do like the movie quite a lot, even though I haven't seen it for aaaages *changes that situation*
I just finished reading this today. I did read it once when I was about fifteen and I did think it was deep and epic and all the other things one feels at 15.ReplyDelete
Upon rereading I am a bit underwhelmed. I agree the language is over done and Louis complains A LOT. I still liked it but not as much as I did when I was 15 and reading it for the first time. Maybe I'll pick it up again in another 10 years and see where I am then.
Oh yeahhh, evolving opinions about Interview With A Vampire are how you can chart your emotional growth! I feel like if I'd read it at 15, I'd look upon it lovingly now and go 'aw, 15 year old me!' But as it is, I'm just like BLEURGH, I'll just watch the film haha.Delete
"f I'd read this when I was about 15, I would have been like 'oh my GOSH, it's so DEEP!' and been kind of obsessed with it. "ReplyDelete
hahaha! that was exactly me when I was 15! i became totally obsessed with Anne Rice when I was in high school, because hey, teens are idiots, and at the time I wouldn't have known good writing if it bashed me on the head.
also, another THANK YOU for the Skarsgard butt. Made my day!
Anytime on the butt thing. Seriously!Delete
Aw, bless you with your Anne Rice obsession! I doubt mine were any better, so we must just look back on those days and file them away under 'never to be repeated times' haha!
You are so right - Louie's whining ruins this much. I reviewed this book about 18 months ago saying the same thing and was comment-attacked by some rapid fans, so watch out!ReplyDelete
The sequel, Vampire Lestat, is really good though. Don't let this one put you off!
Duuuude, so going to read that post! What an intro to it! I quite enjoy responding to comment attacks, actually!Delete
I am considering the sequel. Cause I do like Lestat. We'll see.
I also read this for RIP. I liked the book, I must admit, but Louis is such a whining git he got on my nerves. That's why, for the book, I thought Lestat's character was my favourite. I think I said in my review that if you thought Edward had angst it pales in comparison when you read Louis - definitely a humour free zone. I do quite like Rice although she can be a bit wordy.ReplyDelete
The film is pretty hot though - worth a rewatch to see if Pitt does get his shirt off.
gif of Eric - *drool*
She's definitely a bit wordy, yeah! And incredibly HUMOURLESS. I just can't even.Delete
ERICCCCC! Best vampire ever! Maybe. Possibly Spike is up there. Hm.
Ha, I love Spike! No Eric. No Spike - goddamn it!!!!Delete
haha. That's some interesting commentary on Interview with a Vampire. I also thought it was quite deep when I was 15. I was about to start it again (sometime before the month is over). I never read the rest of the series, and I thought I'd try them out. But I'm afraid that I won't like it as much this time. We'll see. :)ReplyDelete
I think you should definitely give it another read though! If only to get some perspective on yourself as a 15 year old, compared to yourself now. But you might still really like it, and I just might be being really mean!Delete
See this is why I enjoy following your blog. The reviews are so honest and I get to pump my fist and say "Yes!"ReplyDelete
Particularly at this part: "To be entirely fair, if I'd read this when I was about 15, I would have been like 'oh my GOSH, it's so DEEP!' and been kind of obsessed with it. But that's ok, because teenagers are idiots."
Well, put, my dear. Well put.
Awww *goes all shy and giggly* Why thank you!Delete
Come on, teenagers are idiots though. Even when they think they're not, they so are.