1983, Directed by Tony Scott
Written by Ivan Davis and Michael Thomas (screenplay); Whitley Strieber (novel)
Starring: Catherine Deneuve, David Bowie, Susan Sarandon
The Egyptian vampire lady Miriam subsists upon the blood of her lovers. In return the guys or girls don’t age… until Miriam has enough of them. Unfortunately that’s currently the case with John, so his life expectancy is below 24 hours. Desperately he seeks help from the famous Dr. Sarah Roberts. She doesn’t really believe his story, but becomes curious and contacts Miriam … and gets caught in her ban, too.
The entertainment world suffered a tremendous loss with the recent passing of David Bowie, and should you be reading my review of one of his seedier, lesser-known 80s exploits as a way to honor the late rocker?
Of course not. You should watch Labyrinth or The Prestige or The Last Temptation of Christ or listen to one of the dozens of amazing tunes he put out over the course of his storied career, and THEN come back and read my review of The Hunger, vampire erotica before vampire erotica were a thing.
To say this movie is weird is a disservice to the word “weird.” The Hunger, directorial debut of one Tony Scott, must be seen to be believed. 90 minutes of Bauhaus, hot steamy shower sex, David Bowie transforming into old bag à la Little Big Man, lesbian vampire sex, a soundtrack of mostly synths, blood, and zombie heads from Spencer Gifts, in that order.
Egyptian vampire lady Miriam is played by certainly the most Middle Eastern of actresses, Catherine Deneuve. Her food source/lover, John (Bowie) is dying, and needs to find a new person to feed off of. Enter Dr. Sarah Roberts (Sarandon), a doctor studying rapid aging. She doesn’t believe John’s problem at first, but then meets Miriam. That’s when sparks fly and they get into a strange (and bloody) love affair.
f you are expecting outlandish sexual perversities and grossness like you’d find in Caligula, you might be disappointed, but there is amazing chemistry and a really dark, sweaty atmosphere that fits both sexiness and scariness.
Why does it belong in an 80s blogathon, you ask? Do I even have to answer that? Everything about this screams 80s. I think it belongs here because most people do not know about this hidden 80s-gasm. In reality, maybe I wanted to shake things up a little and leave Ferris Bueller and the Breakfast Club for another person to tackle.
Do I love it or hate it? I don’t know. I may need to watch it a second time.
1h 37 minutes, Rated R
Distributed by: MGM/UA