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Film / Vamps

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Vamps is a 2012 American romantic comedy horror film directed by Amy Heckerling and starring Alicia Silverstone and Krysten Ritter, with Sigourney Weaver, Dan Stevens, Richard Lewis, Wallace Shawn, and Malcolm McDowell in supporting roles.

Goody Rutherford (Silverstone) and Stacy Daimer (Ritter) are vampire women happily living in secret from the mortal world in present-day New York City. Modern life is getting complicated for the undead, however, and things get even more difficult for the pair when two men come into their lives. This is especially true in Stacy's case, as she's fallen for a member of the Van Helsings, the infamous vampire-hunting family.


  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: When Goody tries to warn a club girl who Vadim and Ivan had been in the process of seducing (and had planned to feed on) that they're bad guys, she says she likes bad guys, causing Goody to hypnotize her, ordering her not to go with them, and telling her to pay attention to nice guys from now on with the girl walking past an annoyed Vadim and Ivan, muttering about guys who listen when she says stuff and who compliment her.
  • Brick Joke: Goody always claims to know historical facts about New York from stuff she witnessed from watching The History Channel. After realizing how old Goody really is as she starts getting old again, Stacy tearfully says she should have known because all the times she watched The History Channel there was just stuff about Hitler.
  • But I Can't Be Pregnant!: Stacy is initially astonished she's pregnant, as she hadn't known any female vampire could even conceive.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: A human woman who attends one of the Sanguines Anonymous Meetings and is quickly scared off initially just seems to be a Talkative Loon Cloudcuckoolander at first, but is later revealed to have been a spy for Dr. Van Helsing.
  • Cool Old Guy: Tepes, who avoids harming humans, provides good advice to the others, and has quite the impressive historical reputation.
  • Compelling Voice: Vampires can compel weak-willed people to do as they say by using their hypnotic eyes.
  • Dhampyr: Little Goody at the end is apparently a dhampyr, perhaps because being conceived when her mother was still a vampire left her half one.
  • The Dragon: Sacrificial Lamb Ivan serves as this to Cisserus, acting as her flunky and taking part in some of her kills, before being tracked down by Van Helsing and his team. Although they didn't like him, Goody and Stacy are slightly irritated by his disappearance, as with him gone, Cisserus wants them to do even more demeaning grunt work for her.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: A distributing case of drowning one's sorrows with blood, combined with being a Villainous Glutton when Cisserus drinks a whole restaurant dry, and implies that she'd killed more people directly before that, after a celebrity she'd attempted to seduce rejects her.
  • Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette: Stacy (as Krysten Ritter plays her, whose look really is this), and it makes the elder Van Helsing suspicious that she's really a vampire. At first, Dan just thinks they're paranoid, but of course it's true.
  • Emergency Transformation: Danny agrees to have Vadim turn his wife, who's dying of cancer, so that they'll be together longer. This not only cures her, she's left looking much younger than him.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Cisserus calling over Goody and Stacy from across town to model dresses she brought because since she can't take a picture of herself or look in a mirror, she wants to see them wearing those clothes so she can imagine how much better she'd look in them (later dialogue reveals she's been doing this for a long time and only kept Stacy alive instead of draining her to be a second model), and then summons a pizza boy who she feeds on offscreen, quickly establishing her as vain, demanding and uncaring towards human life.
  • Friendly Neighborhood Vampire: The protagonists, along with the group they're part of, "Sanguines Anonymous", who abstain from drinking human blood (only wild animals) and live peacefully hidden.
  • Funny Background Event: A man on a hospital gurney checking his cell phone when Goody runs into her old boyfriend from the sixties.
  • Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: Blonde-haired Goody is arguably the nicest character in the movie.
  • Hidden in Plain Sight: Cisserus turns out to have her coffin inside of Grant's Tomb.
  • Historical Domain Character: Vlad Tepes is one of the vampires. He went to America in 1583.
  • Hypnotic Eyes: Vampires have these and they can compel weak-willed people to obey their commands, including to forget things, by using them.
  • Identical Grandson: Goody pretends she's her past self's daughter when old flame Danny (who knew her in the '60s) sees her again. Later, her female descendant (who Alicia Silverstone also plays) looks very much like her too, only with a different hair color/hairstyle.
  • Insistent Terminology: A justified example; Vadim is the Ukrainian stem and NOT the Russian stem, although to be fair to the main characters, he doesn't regularly interact with them (not having anything to do with Sanguines Anonymous until later in the film) and probably was referred to as the Russian stem before the collapse of the Soviet Union.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: Vampires can compel people to forget specific memories with their hypnotic eyes.
  • Last Girl Wins: Danny remains devoted to his wife, who he met after Goody left him and who is later turned into a vampire.
  • Monsters Anonymous: "Sanguines Anonymous" is a support group for vampires who pledge not to feed from humans. They also organize for overall protection against the government finding out they exist.
  • Off with His Head!: Cisserus beheads and dismembers one of her victims fairly early in the film. Later she's killed by beheading herself.
  • One-Steve Limit: Played straight, not to mention Played for Laughs when Stacy wants to keep dating Joey after learning his full name, saying that Van Helsing isn't that uncommon of a name. Goody is quick to tell her that, yeah, it is.
  • Outliving One's Offspring: Goody outlived both her children. She seems pretty okay with it. Her son died at 63, which she happily notes was old for the time. She's even happier that her daughter died at 99, which was nearly unheard of. However, at the end when she's dying she sees visions of her children, seeming pleased at the idea of reuniting with them after death.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: They don't appear in mirrors, can be destroyed by sunlight, have to sleep inside of coffins with soil from their homeland, aren't harmed by garlic or holy objects and can get pregnant although they miscarry soon after as pregnancy can't be sustained very long. Only certain vampires can make others, called "stems", and if they're killed then vampires they made will become human again at the age they were while turned. Turning someone requires them being bitten by the vampire, then drinking the vampire's blood. Also, their saliva has a natural blood-thinner and this can stop a heart attack. It appears vampires are only killed by beheading. If a pregnant vampire is turned back into a human, their child will apparently be a dhampyr. They also appear able to teleport over a short distance.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Goody was born in the early 1800s, but looks no older than her thirties. Stacy turned at 20 in the early '90s and still looks the same two decades later. Other vampires like Cisserus and Tepes look old, but don't show the centuries they actually are. Others appear to be even older.
  • The Renfield: Goody and Stacy use an accountant who's actually named Renfield to help keep them hidden from the government financially.
  • Soapbox Sadie: Goody was an abolitionist in the early 1800s, and continued to advocate causes (like trying to save the Rosenbergs) throughout her long life.
  • Suicide by Sunlight: Goody says she considered doing this prior to meeting Stacy.
  • Take That!: At one point, Goody and Stacy call Sookie the stupidest character on TV.
  • Tempting Fate: Vadim and Ivan’s opinion of a club girl whose blood they want having the word “juicy” on her clothes.
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Dr. Van Helsing is short, elderly and balding. His wife is at least twenty years younger, tall, blonde and attractive.
  • Undead Tax Exemption: The vampires all stay underground, with no IDs, using only cash, dummy credit cards and making sure to not do things which draw attention. However, in modern times this has become difficult, as most are on social media or use various electronic devices that the government has taken note of. They're starting to be drawn out with things such as being called for jury duty, which they can't do with it being during the day. In the end, they band together and hypnotize government officials during an eclipse into erasing them from all records.
  • The Vamp: Despite the film's title, only Cisserus qualifies for this. She hypnotizes or seduces men to feed on.
  • Vampire Hunter: Dr. Van Helsing and his followers. However, though he views himself as an expert on vampires, a lot of his beliefs turn out to be wrong.
  • Vampires Sleep in Coffins: And so do humans sleeping with said vampires if they're in on The Masquerade.
  • Van Helsing Hate Crimes: Dr. Van Helsing isn't aware at first that not all vampires are killers, so he's after them equally. He later learns the error of his ways, however, on meeting Stacy and Goody. They ally with him to destroy their maker, who really is a killer.
  • Vegetarian Vampire: Goody and Stacy are both committed to feeding on wild animals only (like rats). They're part of a whole "Sanguines Anonymous" support group to help vampires do this.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Cute?: Goody and Stacy don't have the heart to feed on domesticated animals, not even pigeons they bought at a pet store for the specific purpose of feeding on.
  • Who Names Their Kid "Dude"?: When Stacy finally realizes how old Goody is, she smiles and asks her if she really thought people still named their daughters Goody.
  • Who Wants to Live Forever?: This is one reason Goody and Stacy decide to give up vampirism and become human again. The other reason is that Stacy's unborn child won't survive unless Stacy becomes human. Goody and Stacy had fun as vampires, but admit that "being young is getting kinda old". Goody dies as a result.