Interview With the Vampire Review: Live-Action Fanfic of Anne Rice’s Iconic Novel That Pulses With Potential
Anne Rice famously disliked fanfiction. In the mid 2000s, the iconic writer posted a message on her website restricting all fanfic, stating, “I don’t permit fanfiction. the characters are protected. It upsets me frightfully to try and ponder fanfiction with my characters.” There were even claims around that time that legitimate counsel for Rice contacted websites and writers of fanfic with cease-and-desist notices and even fanfiction.net, at a certain point, eliminated the whole classification for fiction based on Rice’s books from their site upon the writer’s request, doubtlessly stirring up a lot of dismay for fans who delighted in both perusing and composing reimaginings of her stories and characters. Presently, on October second, AMC will make a big appearance another television series based on Rice’s Interview With the Vampire and, while it might seem somewhat strange to discuss Rice’s decades-long disdain for fanfiction and an officially sanctioned transformation of her work at the same time, actually this: AMC’s Interview With the Vampire is itself an incredibly eccentric live-action fanfic, yet one with extraordinary promise that honors the themes of the first work.
Prior to bouncing into the review itself, one has to address a significant point: fans of Rice’s novel coming into the AMC series believing that they are getting a variation of the book might leave away disappointed. As teasers and trailers have suggested, this series maintains unquestionably the barest of resemblances to the novel. We have the characters who share the names of those in the book and who end up being vampires, and the story midway takes place in New Orleans, yet practically every other detail of the story has been fundamentally adjusted. The course of events is unique, the ages of key characters — specifically “kid vampire” Claudia and “kid correspondent” Daniel Molloy — are stunningly unique, the very backstories and histories of other characters are also completely unique, in particular for Louis. The series is, in practically every sense of the word, a “consider the possibility that?” version of Interview – and are in numerous ways unique creations.
Assuming Rice fans can figure out how to move beyond that and set aside the assumption for a genuine variation, what remains is a drawing in and surprisingly human story, one that has potential however not one without some challenges. Louis, 100 years plus-year-old vampire played by Jacob Anderson, tells his biography to a maturing journalist, Daniel Molloy (played by Eric Bogosian). The story, done in an interview design, is presented as a second endeavor of sorts — the series alludes to the possibility that this present reality novel, in this telling, was a first interview decades prior making this new one a sequel of sorts. While the interview takes place in the present, Louis’ story takes place thus of-the-20th century New Orleans where we see him wrestling not just with being a Person of color attempting to support his family during that time, yet additionally as a closeted gay man working in the city’s less savory businesses. It’s as a component of that struggle that Louis encounters the dashing and mysterious Lestat (Sam Reid), who turns out to be a vampire who simultaneously empowers Louis to be his actual self and furthermore becomes his abuser, in a sense, when he turns him into a vampire.
What jumps out with the series, outside of its sumptuous and uncommonly lovely sets, is that the series’ story, while a far, long ways from the book, is both interesting and does enjoy a tremendous upper hand over previous adaptations. Because Rice’s Vampire Chronicles is presently a total series, something it was not when the best-known variation of the material (the 1994 film starring Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt) was made, there is considerably more material to draw from in terms of portrayal. On account of Reid’s Lestat, this works out splendidly. Reid brings to life a Lestat that feels like he strolled off the pages of Rice’s novels and feels full fledged and like an entire person, even through Louis’ rather uneven and biased recollections. His exhibition is inebriating, despite the fact that you realize Lestat is especially the “antagonist” of Louis’ story. Simply put, Reid is the ideal Lestat. The fresh way to deal with portrayal also works, however to a lesser degree, for Louis, who comes off as a smidgen more complicated and a touch less frustrating than he does in Rice’s novel. Tragically, by compressing the course of events between Louis’ vampire turn and his detailed story interview to just north of 100 years down from several centuries in the book, almost no part of that character advancement feels natural and acquired. Anderson does a fine occupation of playing an exceptionally tormented human Louis and a fine occupation of playing a more emotionless and aloof vampire Louis who struggles with his own story, yet the two performances feel incredibly disconnected – a defect of the show’s storytelling choices, not the acting. Anderson brings a hauntedness to current Louis that doesn’t necessarily show up in Rice’s novel and it’s exquisite.
There are, in any case, a couple of misses with the series’ choices that are similarly mind boggling. Inclining toward Louis’ queerness as an essential source of his suffering — in the book, it’s the passing of his hyper-religious however cherished brother that is the source of Louis’ torture — allows the series to conclusively deliver on the novel’s getting through eccentric undertones, yet on occasion overcomplicates and undermines them by enclosing them by a hunter/prey dynamic. While there is no denying the chemistry among Reid and Anderson as these two men, it’s also irrefutable that their relationship is harmful and, now and again feels elevated in that respect for show. There’s also the issue of the two characters whose ages have been dabbled with. Claudia is matured up (and necessarily so) in this transformation and keeping in mind that Bailey Bass delivers what may be the best execution in the series, the composing still, now and again, infantilizes her as however the person wasn’t matured up by any means. As for Daniel Molloy, the person is essentially a unique creation who bears no resemblance to his novel partner and, while Bogosian is a fantastic entertainer (and as a more seasoned Daniel struggling with his own life issues, is an ideal casting decision), his work here feels a piece level on occasion, however there is surely space for expansion as the series and story progresses, something clear in the five (out of seven) episodes made accessible for review.
However, even with the odd changes to story that don’t exactly hit, Interview is inebriating. Visually, this is an exceptionally raised creation loaded with delightful details and rich symbolism. There’s an eroticism to the series that goes well past its presented queerness and the “sexy vampire” of everything and, while there is a decent piece of viciousness and a ton of blood – this is a vampire story, all things considered – it’s rarely gratuitous. Instead, there’s this fast pulse of risk and interest that pushes the watcher to relinquish their misgivings pretty much all of the previously mentioned issues and just yield to the draw of these imperfect characters, this city, this darkness. Adequately all it viewers, even the most skeptical, snared and may well send those new to Rice’s gothic awfulness running straight to bookshops for more. It’s a complicated series in practically every possible sense and as such, the series as a lot of promise and potential. You get the sense that this is a story that wants you to join the party for the long stretch and is making a space for you to settle in to do just that.
Yes, Rice detested fanfiction and AMC’s Interview With the Vampire is a lot of a live-action version of that, something that is sure to get under the skin of many lifelong fans of her work. In any case, the series is not without seductive appeal. Between extraordinary visual details and some really outstanding performances, the series offers an exceptional understanding of the bigger themes of Rice’s stories and, while it doesn’t exactly get everything solidly in the first couple of episodes, there’s space to develop and it merits developing with it. This series will not be for everybody, except it unquestionably has chomp.
Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire premieres on AMC on October second.