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The Lost Boys (1987)



Another one to mark down for "Things Nate should have reviewed earlier." This glossy teen vampire flick is a staple on cable channels like USA, and is immensely popular amongst disillusioned adolescents. It's the only review request I get with any frequency. I can see why.

It's not that The Lost Boys is a great cinematic masterpiece, one horribly overlooked in the 1987 Oscars. On the contrary, it's more style than substance, more flashy than focused. The whole affair smacks of the touch of director Joel Schumacher (Batman Forever, 8MM). It's not to say the movie is bad either. There's not a thing that annoyed me (beyond the really awful 80s hair and clothing), and I was entertained.

Still not as scary as Jack Bauer. Kiefer Sutherland in The Lost Boys (1987).Still not as scary as Jack Bauer. Kiefer Sutherland in The Lost Boys (1987).

Michael Emerson (Jason Patric) moves to Santa Clara, the murder capital of the world, with his brother Sam (Corey Haim) and mother Lucy (Dianne Wiest). Being the new kid in town, he's susceptible to peer pressure, and he falls in with the wrong crowd. The really wrong crowd: David (Kiefer Sutherland, doing malicious as only he can) and his gang of ravin' vampires. Mike's now part-bloodsucker, a situation that Sam and his new friends, the extremely dorky vampire hunting Frog brothers (Corey Feldman and Jamison Newlander) try to remedy before something awful happens and they have to tell Mom.

Though made in the late 80s, The Lost Boys is right at home with Scream-driven spate of self-aware horror that we've seen in recent days. However, it's not quite as successful, because though the attempts at vampire wit are frequent, many of them are pretty shallow and dumb.

My suggestion is that you rent this movie. Buy it if you want, but unless you have a constant stream of friends who've never seen it, you may only get one play out of the tape. There's not a whole lot of subtext here...you can pretty much catch everything the movie has to offer the first time around.


The original concept called for more Goonie-aged vampires than teenagers. Schumacher ixnayed the grade school vibe.

David does not disintegrate like the other vampires - this was intended to open up the film for a sequel that was written but never produced.