The Kiss (2008)

Sometimes I think I really need to stop fishing vampire films out of the bargain bin. This beacon of mediocrity I bought for €1.99; and I still feel I paid too much.

The Kiss tells a pretty average story that in the way in which it is told would have nicely supported a short film but not an 82 minute feature. Our protagonist is Jeremy, a teenager, and pretty much an outsider at school. By accident (or destiny), he comes across long-lost vampire remains. Enthralled as if under a spell, he sets out to restore what has been lost, and then all sorts of plot and consequences happen…

As I just said, the story is pretty average. Which is annoying as some of the more interesting bits, like the grand mystical background they set up in the beginning, are never picked up again or used in any way. A wasted opportunity, as The Kiss is thus reduced to another teenager-meets-vampire medley full of blood and hormones.

Technically, this film is competently and professionally put together. Many visual aspects of the film are really good and the acting is for the most part adequate. It is the story itself that is lacking the necessary finesse and novelty to draw you in. It just does not at any moment feel like a film that needs to exist or that needs to be seen. I can therefore not recommend it to anybody, even though it is not offensively bad, just plain unnecessary.

I guess I’d give The Kiss 4.0 out of 10, but mostly for the look and the competent production. I cannot understand imdb’s current rating of 5.4, which is way too high; and neither can I understand the description of this film as a horror comedy, which it is not, in spite of a couple of amusing scenes.


Sidenote: a highlight of this rather bland film is to see the famous B-movie writer/director Jack Hill in an acting role. His acting is, actually, outstanding, so maybe he made the wrong career choice 50 years ago. His performance as a funny yet nasty teacher, who bullies one pupil in order to enhance his popularity with the rest of the class, is really great. Unfortunately, he is only in a few short scenes.


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