When it comes to the horror genre, one thing is certain; vampires never get old. No, really. They literally don’t age... Awful bloodsucker jokes aside, Vampire Week is kicking off on Horror Channel on the 13th of March with a slew of brilliant undead movies. Running until the 19th of March, Vampire Week celebrates the genre with 9 very different high -stake affairs.
While the stereotypical view of vampires is all creaking coffins, crossed arms and an allergy to garlic and daylight, modern Dracula-likes are far more sophisticated. The genre has been reinvented in a variety of terrifying ways and Horror Channel has carefully curated a ghoulish selection of genre-defining vampire movies.
So whether you’re looking for spattery horror, an atmospheric affair, or some laughter amidst the slaughter, it’s all on the Horror Channel. Settle down in your coffin, here’s what not to miss during Vampire Week.
You’ll find Horror Channel on Sky 317, Virgin 149, Freeview 68, and Freesat 138
13th March at 21:00
First up, let’s kick off with a vampiric disease. And kick off is the correct term given that Milla Jovovich seemingly couldn’t move in the noughties without falling into a horror action hybrid where she had to run up a wall. Ultraviolet casts Jovovich as Violet, a woman infected with a virus that causes blood-sucker symptoms such as super-human strength, self healing and stabby canines. Those infected are called Hemophages and are immediately annihilated by the government to prevent the spread. Spoiler alert; Violet would rather not be wiped out…
30 Days of Night (2007)
13th March at 22:45
It’s time to grab your vitamin D tablets. Based on a graphic novel of the same name, 30 Days of Night takes us to an Alaskan town where there’s no daylight for a whole month. This makes it a perfect buffet for a roving band of thirsty vampires. Josh Hartnett and Melissa George star in this unforgiving and gory thriller. These vampires really aren’t the polite kind , and those looking for blood in the snow won’t be disappointed. This is a perfect nasty horror that delivers the true nightmare of a thirst for blood.
Let Me In (2010)
14th March at 21:00
From guts and gore, to something significantly gentler but, somehow, no less horrific. Between the monstrous found footage of Cloverfield and action of the Planet of the Apes franchise, director Matt Reeves found time to remake Swedish vampire romance Let the Right One In. This is the story of the unlikely friendship between 12 year old Owen, played by Kodi Smit-McPhee, and Chloe Moretz’s young bloodsucker, Abby. Exquisite performances from both young actors mean that even as Abby’s natural inclinations raise their ugly head, this is a movie with a delightful beating heart.
14th March at 23:15
Heading out into the woods, as a couple, is meant to be wholesome. Gazing up at the stars… selfies for Instagram… Not tripping over a nest of vampires when all you want to do is spend some quality time together. Redwood’s Josh and Beth are attempting just that, as Josh is terminally ill with leukemia. This adds a uniquely emotional spin to what could easily have been a schlocky teen affair. Instead, when Nicholas Brendon pops up as a mysterious park ranger with a bag of sharpened stakes, things get significantly more interesting, not to mention perilous.
Fright Night (1985)
15th March at 21:00
Blending horror and comedy can be a true nightmare. Thankfully, Fright Night effortlessly walks the perfect line between genuine scares and laugh out loud moments. Now a much-loved cult classic, Fright Night follows a teenager as he becomes convinced of the nefarious behaviour of his family’s new next door neighbour. Doing what any of us would do in the face of a potential corpse disposal, he calls a fictional TV vampire hunter. Hilarious performances and glowing-eyed nastiness abound here. Even if you’ve seen the remake, it’s time to appreciate the ‘80s original. Fangs for the memories…
John Carpenter’s Vampires (1998)
16th March at 21:00
A collection of horror movies just doesn’t feel right without the work of scare maestro, John Carpenter. Of course the man behind the iconic Michael Myers has his own vampire movie. Here we follow Jack Crow, played by James Woods, who is a so-called master slayer, trained by the Catholic Church and head of a crew of vampire hunters. Carpenter combines his love of horror with that of westerns, making Vampires a thrilling gory genre bender as Jack attempts to keep a mystical powerful crucifix out of the hands of a group of deadly vampires. This is seriously bloody high concept horror.
17th March at 21:00
There are plenty of zombie apocalypse stories out there, but very few vampire-flavoured ends of the world. Well in Priest, the blood suckers have kind of already won. Humans now exist in walled cities governed by the church, and Paul Bettany plays a warrior known as the Priest. When his niece goes missing and vampires are to blame, he heads out for some monster slaying glory. Priest is loosely based on a Korean graphic novel and is an intriguing blend of horror, action, and apocalypse with some unique creature design.
Eat Locals (2017)
18th March at 21:00
Anyone who has ever turned on the TV in the UK will know the friendly face of Annette Crosbie. Whether it’s in period dramas or just as the long-suffering wife of uber-grump Victor Meldrew in One Foot in the Grave, Crosbie is a TV stalwart. What she’s not known for though is playing a vampire overlord who arms herself with a machine gun as the military attempts to take down a coven of vampires in an English country house. That’s probably all we have to say on the matter. Yep, that’ll do it.
Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992)
19th March at 21:00
And finally, last but very much not least, Bram Stoker’s Dracula from Francis Ford Coppola is the gothic cherry on this very bloodied cake. Perhaps you’ve never seen Gary Oldman’s turn as the titular blood drinking legend, complete with a unique set of sunglasses? Or maybe you had just forgotten and need to remind yourself that Keanu Reeves and Winona Ryder play the Harkers in this gloriously OTT adaptation. This is a luciously shot fairy tale dripping with horrific imagery, practical effects, and nods to classic horror cinema. Sit back and drink it in.
Vampire Week starts on Horror Channel on March 13th. You’ll find it on Sky 317, Virgin 149, Freeview 68, and Freesat 138