I had low expectations for the movie “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” because of several movie reviews I read that gave it a less than stellar recommendation. And besides, the concept is just so plain silly, how can you expect a great movie from that? I mean, really? Abraham Lincoln? As a vampire hunter?
Well, it’s an original concept, I’ll give it that. I’ve heard the book is really good, and if I had the time, I might actually read it. Anyway, back to the movie. This film tells the story of our sixteenth President, but with a few extra tweaks. Apparently, unbeknownst to us all, good old Honest Abe spent a considerable amount of time hunting vampires in his youth. It begins with the vampire that murdered his mother. Bent on revenge, Abe tries to kill the man with a normal gun, whereupon he has his rear-end handily handed to him by the creature in a fight that nearly costs Abe his life. I’ll leave it there, because I don’t want to spoil too much. Anyway, Lincoln moves to Illinois and takes up hunting vampires as a lifelong vocation. But he soon realizes that the vampire menace is too pervasive for a single man to deal with it alone. This leads him to politics, and on to the Presidency, and on to the Civil War.
I have two major concerns with the movie. First, there was a certain lack of cohesiveness to it. The beginning was decent enough. I was intrigued by the vampire hunting and his life in Springfield, but after that, there seemed to be a kind of disconnect with the events of the Civil War. I kind of have the feeling that it would have worked better as a mini-series on TV, because the scope of events was too grand. But that, of course, would be ridiculous. My other concern is something of a moral one. Slavery is such a repugnant practice, injecting vampires into the war that won the slaves their freedom seems to minimize the significance of that war and all that transpired because of it. I’m not sure you really want to do that. It’s a sensitive issue, and not one that sits well with dark humor.
Still, I found the movie enjoyable, if not perfect. I’ll give it three and a half stars.