Buffy, Morse, Vampire Diaries…: when teenagers seize the myth of the vampire

On the occasion of the release of “Vampires”, the new Netflix production with Oulaya Amamra, a look back at these films and series that mix the world of adolescents with that of sharp teeth.

Warner Bros. Pictures/ Twentieth Century Fox Television/ DR

Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997 – 2003)

What is it about ? Buffy Summers longs for a simple and fulfilling life with her family and friends. But the demons that lurk in Sunnydale constantly remind her that she must face up to her responsibilities as a Slayer.

Well worth a look ? It is certainly one of the most popular series to have brought the myth of the vampire to the small screen. A real phenomenon during the 90s and early 2000s, Buffy the Vampire Slayer managed to dust off the creatures by integrating them into a universe of teenagers, at Hemery High School in Los Angeles. The cult soap opera, which contains seven seasons, moves away from the usual gothic image and manages, skillfully, to make these monsters more pop, funnier, and even to make them real. sexsymbolslike Angel (David Boreanaz) or Spike (James Marsters).

Martin (1978)

What is it about ? Martin, a young man of seventeen, is obsessed with blood. He kills women and men whose blood he drinks by slashing their limbs with a razor. His uncle Cuda who hosts him is convinced that he is a vampire, descendant of Count Orlok “Nosferatu”. Is Martin a real vampire, or just an outcast in the grip of madness?

Well worth a look ? No, George A. Romero isn’t just a zombie movie director. With Martin, the filmmaker brilliantly turns to the world of vampires and draws up a metaphor – as for Night of the Living Dead, which was a reflection of the Vietnam War – on the system of a society that rejects marginals. By following a seventeen-year-old teenager (John Amplas), vampirism also becomes the image of an illness and a quest for identity, which makes the film even more realistic and human. Another interesting fact, George A. Romero sows doubt in the viewer, who never really knows if Martin is really a vampire or a simple murderer.

Transfiguration (2017)

What is it about ? Queens, New York. Mile is 14 years old. An orphan, his only refuge is the apartment he shares with his older brother. Solitary, he spends his time watching vampire movies. The arrival of a new neighbor will give rise to new feelings in him…

Well worth a look ? Just like Marvin, quoted above, Transfiguration totally deconstructs the myth through the eyes of a young teenager, Milo (Eric Ruffin), who is so inhabited, even obsessed, with vampires that he thinks he really is one. independent movie, Transfiguration is intended to be very intimate and delicate, especially as soon as the young neighbor, Sophie (Chloe Levine), enters the scene, who will create a romantic tension between the two young characters.

Morse (2009)

What is it about ? Oskar is a fragile and marginal teenager, totally left to himself and martyred by the boys in his class. To escape his boredom, he takes refuge at the bottom of the snow-covered courtyard of his building, and imagines scenes of revenge. When Eli moves in with his father on the same landing as him, Oskar finally finds someone to befriend. Only going out at night, and in a t-shirt despite the freezing cold, the young girl does not fail to intrigue him… and her arrival in this suburb of Stockholm coincides with a series of bloody deaths and mysterious disappearances.

Well worth a look ? There is also talk of a love story in this Swedish film, which has become a cult. With Morse, director Tomas Alfredson tells us about the encounter between a young boy, perfectly human, and a vampire. Very quickly, the latter will become his guardian angel. Bloody, moving, poetic, Walrus pulls out of the game thanks to a thoughtful and daring staging. In 2010, the film had a – rather good – American remake, entitled Let me in, directed by Matt Reeves.

Vampire Diaries (2009-2017)

What is it about ? Four months after the tragic car crash that killed their parents, 17-year-old Elena Gilbert and her 15-year-old brother Jeremy are still trying to adjust to this new reality. Beautiful and popular, the teenager continues her studies at Mystic Falls High while trying to hide her grief. Elena is immediately fascinated by Stefan and Damon Salvatore, two polar opposite brothers. She soon discovers that they are in fact vampires…

Well worth a look ? Hit series, which revealed, among others, Nina Dobrev, Vampire Diaries lasted for no less than eight seasons. Adapted from the books by LJ Smith, the program is more Hollywood than works cited above. Here, vampires are glamorized in order to appeal to a younger and above all wider audience. Fans of love triangles should undoubtedly find their account here.

Lost Generation (1987)

What is it about ? One of the most famous myths of fantastic cinema, that of vampirism in a resolutely modern adaptation where our long-toothed young wolves are rockers, bikers and gang leaders, all set in the setting of a small California seaside resort.

Well worth a look ? A cult film from the 80s, Génération Perdue this time transposes vampires into a much more punk context. In the film, the monsters are not old men with pale faces with a red and black cape, but a group of rebellious bikers, who constantly break the rules. Very beautiful film on youth – there is an obvious parallel with the lost children of Peter Pan – Lost Generation above all has an excellent cast (cult too) and modernizes the bloodsuckers like never before.

Twilight: Chapter 1 – Fascination (2008)

What is it about ? Isabella Swan, 17, moves to Forks, a rainy town in Washington State, to live with her father. She expects her new life to be as boring as the city itself. However, in high school, she is terribly intrigued by the behavior of a strange sibling, two girls and three boys. Bella falls madly in love with one of them, Edward Cullen. A sensual and dangerous relationship then begins between the two young people: when Isabella realizes that Edward is a vampire, it is already too late.

Well worth a look ? Of course, how not to talk about this saga? A worldwide phenomenon, Twilight attracted as many fans as detractors when it was released. This is also what makes it special. If the films have often been criticized for their cutesy characters and plots, the first opus, directed by Catherine Hardwicke, remains a rather honest and effective romance. If you’re willing to see vampires glow in the sunlight and refuse to feed on human blood, Twilight may be ideal for you.

From Buffy to Vampires on Netflix: why do these creatures make us addicted? [PODCAST]

Buffy, Morse, Vampire Diaries…: when teenagers seize the myth of the vampire