The Rise of Vampires and Werewolves in Hollywood Cinema

Puguh Budi Susetiyo
Puguh Budi Susetiyo

In horror Hollywood cinema, two common monsters used to be employed in many narrations. They are vampires and werewolves. Both of two them have various stories as they are represented in the movies, and they have been dominating the contemporary horror stories in Hollywood.

Based on several data that are gathered by the author since 2000, both vampires and werewolves emerge in some horror movies included non-horror movies. The emergence of vampires and werewolves stories in Hollywood movies from 2000 until 2010 could be observed.

Vampire movies have more possibilities to be considered as fascinating movies that have a lot of alternative versions to develop than werewolf movies. As a living dead creature, vampires have a long and mysterious history which makes people curious whether they live in the real world or not.

They always appear as personalities with more muscular power and longer fangs, while werewolves roughly transform from ordinary human beings into half human-wolves in the full moon.

The other possibility of the raising of vampire movies is the availability of the data, the journals, the reports, and the books about vampires that are more available than werewolves and any other living dead creatures.

Moreover, some movies present two monsters, vampires and werewolves, together what is also clear, these movies are ‘Underworld’ (2003), ‘Van Helsing’ (2004), ‘Underworld Evolution’ (2006), ‘Underworld The Rise of the Lycans’ (2009), ‘Twilight New Moon’ (2009), and ‘Twilight Eclipse’ (2010).

In these movies, vampires and werewolves appear together, and they tell various interesting stories to be analyzed. In addition, they emerge as immortal enemies who try to kill each other, and their presence has impacts on human beings life who are the outsiders of the monsters conflicts.

‘Underworld’ has sequel and prequel which are ‘Underworld Evolution’ and ‘Underworld: The Rise of the Lycans’. The first two movies are directed by Len Wiseman and written by Kevin Grevioux, Len Wiseman, and Denny McBride. However, the prequel, ‘Underworld: The Rise of the Lycans’, is directed by Patrick Tatopoulos and written by Robert Orr, Len Wiseman, and Denny McBride.

The main storyline of the first two movies is based on the clash between two immortal clans, vampires and werewolves (Lycans). The main character, Selene, acted by Kate Beckinsale, is a death dealer vampire sworn by the vampire’s clan to kill all Lycans led by Lucian, acted by Michael Sheen.

Selene was surprised when Lycan developed research to figure the Corvinus’ descendent whose appropriate blood to become the hybrid creature between vampire and Lycan.

Michael Corvinus, acted by Scott Speedman, was the one whose appropriate blood and became the hybrid creature. This phenomenon made Victor (Bill Nighly), as the leader of the vampire’s clan, wanted to kill Michael since Victor wanted to keep the purity of the vampire’s blood.

The love between Selene and Michael reminded Victor of the love between Sonja, his daughter, and Lucian explained in the prequel. However, Selene considered by Victor as his daughter killed him after she listened to the true story about her and the death of her family from Lucian.

In the sequel, ‘Underworld Evolution’, the origin of the clash between vampires and Lycans was explained. The relationship between human beings, vampires, and Lycans was pioneered by Alexander Corvinus, whose strange disease that made him and his sons immortal.

Based on the story he had two immortal sons who were Marcus Corvinus (Tony Curran), the original vampire after he was bitten by a bat, and his brother, William Corvinus who was the original werewolf after he was bitten by a wolf and he could not return into a human being anymore.

Victor’s death made Marcus became the leader of the vampire, and he wanted to be the leader of Lycans by trying to release William from his tomb. Selene and Michael could stop Marcus with the help of Alexander Corvinus before he died.

The prequel, ‘The Rise of the Lycans’, presented the forbidden love of Sonja (Rhona Mitra), a vampire, and Lucian, a Lycan. Lycans were the vampire’s slave that worked for vampire and protected them from werewolves that could not change into a human.

Viktor, who was Sonja’s father, could not accept Sonja’s pregnancy that was the mixed-blood between vampire and Lycan. Sonja’s death penalty made Lucian mad and full of anger. He rose as the leader of Lycans and werewolves and fought against vampires.

In 2004, Van Helsing emerged as an adopted movie from Bram Stoker novel ‘Dracula’. The name Van Helsing, who was a professor’s name, Abraham Van Helsing, in Dracula, changed into Gabriel Van Helsing who was a Roman Catholic secret agent in protecting the world from satanic creatures.

A massive mission for Van Helsing (Hugh Jackman) came when Valerious’ family report their problem to Rome. Roman Catholic Church got Van Helsing to solve the Valerious’ family problem connecting Van Helsing and his past life. Valerious’ family has a problem with Count Dracula (Richard Roxburgh), who was similar to Count Dracula in Dracula. Van Helsing must help Anna (Kate Beckinsale) and Velkan Valerious (Will Kemp) to kill Dracula.

Van Helsing, written and directed by Stephen Sommers, tried to represent the other story of Dracula or vampire that had a relationship with werewolf or wolfman. The story ended with the death of Dracula defeated by Van Helsing. However, Van Helsing could defeat Dracula when he changed into a werewolf.

The movie presented the rivalry of Dracula and werewolf who are immortal unless they kill each other. In addition, the movie also showed the reason why werewolf served Dracula as his master. Dracula had the cure that could make werewolf returned into a human being and released the curse of being a werewolf.

Furthermore, ‘Twilight’, a novel written by Stephenie Mayer, also appears as a new phenomenon in a vampire story. It made Chris Weitz, the director of ‘Twilight Saga: New Moon’ (2009) adopted the novel into a movie and let Stephenie Mayer and Melissa Rosenberg to become the writers of the movie.

Basically, the main idea of the movie was the love story of Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart), a human being, with Edward Cullen (Robert Pattison), a vampire. The story developed a new kind of vampire that drink animal blood instead of human blood. Moreover, they socialized and lived in society instead of being antisocial creatures and lived in a castle.

The sequel of ‘Twilight’ is ‘Twilight Saga: New Moon’. This sequel presented the rivalry and the relationship between new kind of vampires and some ethnic group that could change into a wolf (probably werewolf).

Jacob (Taylor Lautner) preferred to join the group that could change him into a werewolf. This group had its territory, and vampires also had their own. The romance story rose when Edward and Jacob left Bella became a figure who protected Bella. Jacob, who was a werewolf, did not like Edward since he knew that Edward was a vampire and in vice versa.

The next sequel is ‘Twilight Saga: Eclipse’ (2010) directed by David Slade. The rivalry of vampires and werewolves changed into cooperation when a group of vampire killed some people in both of Cullen’s family’s and werewolf’s territory. Bella was the main target of the killing since Edward protected her. Vampires that were the outsider of the Cullen’s family did not know what Edward did. The last sequel has not been played yet, but the appearance of two immortal monsters in the same movie emerges gradually with a different kind of story.

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