Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
Release Date: June 22, 2012
Audience: Older teenagers and adults
Runtime: 105 minutes
Distributor: 20th Century Fox Pictures/News Corp.
Director: Timur Bekmambetov
Writer: Seth Grahame-Smith
Address Comments To:Rupert Murdoch, Chairman/CEO, News Corp.
Chase Carey, President/COO, News Corp.
Tom Rothman and Jim Gianopulos, Chairmen/CEO, Fox Filmed Entertainment
20th Century Fox Film Corp. (Fox Searchlight Pictures/Fox International/Fox Atomic/FoxFaith)
10201 West Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90035
Phone: (310) 369-1000
The story begins with Abraham Lincoln’s youth. Young Abe tries to save his childhood friend, a black boy named Will, from being beaten by a slavemaster, Jack Barts. When Jack starts trying to beat Abe as well, Abe’s mother steps in and declares that, no person is free until all people are free. Jack stops the beating but tells Abe’s mother she will rue the day she interfered with him.
One night, Abe sees Jack sneak into their house, and do something to his mother’s arm. She gets sick and dies, but Abe’s father tells Abe not to seek vengeance.
Abe obeys his father’s command until he dies when Abe becomes a young man. Then, Abe one night decides to shoot Jack. Another man, Henry Sturges, notices Abe’s agitation in the saloon and wonders if he’s going to kill a man or talk to a woman.
Abe shoots Jack in the eye, but when he turns his back on the body, the body disappears. Suddenly, Jack, who’s a vampire, is viciously attacking Abe. Just when Jack is about to kill Abe, who’s unconscious, Henry comes to the rescue and fights Jack. Amazingly, he throws Jack over the roof of the small stable near the docks where Jack was.
Abe wakes up back at Henry’s place. Henry informs Abe that Jack is a vampire. He also tells Abe that a race of vampires has established an underground community in the slaveholding South. The vampires use slaves as their victims.
Henry also tells Abe that he’s waging a campaign against the vampires, killing as many as he can. Abe wants to help, but Henry promises Abe to avoid vengeance and follow Henry’s orders on which vampires to kill. He also tells Abe that killing vampires is a lonely profession, meaning Abe will have to forswear love, family, and friends.
Abe agrees to Henry’s proposal as long as someday Henry will let Abe kill Jack the vampire. After Henry trains Abe to fight and kill vampires with his ax, Abe moves to Springfield, Ill. to pursue his law career. He meets and romances Mary Todd. Meanwhile, Henry starts naming the vampires Abe is supposed to kill. Abe starts confronting and killing the vampires, but he decides to woo Mary Todd, against Henry’s orders. He also starts to get interested in solving the problem of slavery through politics, another thing Henry warned Abe not to do. Killing vampires requires secrecy, Henry says.
Eventually, Jack’s vampire master, Adam, finds out about Abe’s peculiar job of killing vampires. They decide to target Mary, but Abe and Henry protect her. Finally, Henry gives the okay to kill Jack. Then, after a successful battle against some of Adam’s vampire henchmen, Abe decides to put away his ax and get involved in politics and the anti-slavery movement.
The rest of the movie details some highlights from Abe’s career, which leads, of course to the Civil War. Eventually, however, Adam and his vampire hordes turn the tide on the first day of battle at Gettysburg. Abe decides to take up his ax again to destroy Adam and his vampire hordes forever and save the Union.
Of course, the filmmakers treat this bizarre alternate history with utmost seriousness. They even throw in some positive Christian, biblical references. The problem is that the stylized violence is extreme, with blood flying all over in slow motion as Abe uses his ax against the scary vampires. It also contains almost constant slow motion wirework and CGI effects. All this sometimes becomes corny and laughable, especially during the heightened moments of action and drama.
The original author of this story also did a novel about zombies in Jane Austen’s world of PRIDE AND PREJUDICE. It may be okay to do this with a work of fiction, but ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER uses historical events and historical people. As such, it cheapens the actual story, especially when it comes to all the men who lost heir lives fighting “Mr. Lincoln’s War.” Also, there’s a politically correct final scene involving Barack Obama, which suggests all the good people opposing Obama are like the evil vampires in this movie!
Most moviegoers, especially media-wise, intelligent viewers, will want to avoid ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER.
The filmmakers treat this bizarre alternate history seriously. They even throw in some positive, overt Christian, biblical references. The problem is that the stylized violence is extreme, with blood flying in slow motion as Abe uses his ax against many scary vampires. ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER also contains too much slow motion wirework and CGI effects. This sometimes becomes very corny and laughable, especially during the heightened moments of action and drama. Ultimately, VAMPIRE HUNTER cheapens and demeans the true story of Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War, which killed over 600,000 people.