Macabre…ish Horror Review: Near Dark



Near Dark, 1987/ 95 min.


Caleb (Adrian Pasdar) meets and is smitten by Mae (Jenny Wright), a drifter, and at dawn, after he playfully refuses to take her home, she bites him. Caleb is about to find out why he should have just taken her where she wanted to go. She runs off and as the sun peaks over the horizon, Caleb’s skin starts smoking and charring. He tries to make it across a field to a his family’s nearby farm but before he gets there, an RV with blacked out windows, snatches him and yanks him inside.


In the RV, is Mae and a few others, all vampires. Severen (Bill Paxton) wants to kill him, the leader, Jesse Hooker (Lance Henriksen), says he’s got a week, if Caleb can prove himself and learn to hunt, he can stay.


But Caleb resists. He tries to take the bus out of town to escape and when they find him he refuses to feed which makes him untrustworthy, so he relies on Mae to feed him.


At a bar, the gang burns it to the ground after slaughtering everyone inside except one, that Caleb let’s escape. The gang decides he needs to die because of it but change their mind after he helps them escape a police raid and fire fight by sacrificing himself to get their van.


Later, Caleb’s dad, Loy (Tim Thomerson) shows up to their hotel room him and the child vampire, Homer (Joshua John Miller) wants to turn Caleb’s sister, Sarah (Marcie Leeds) and make her, his companion but they escape when Sarah runs out the door. Caleb leaves with her and his dad who finally understands that he’s a vampire.


Loy gives Caleb a blood transfusion that reverses his vampirism and Caleb returns to his life and unfortunately, so do the vampires. First Mae but then Sarah is kidnapped which causes a showdown between Caleb and Severen.


When Caleb then goes after the gang to recover his sister, it’s the beginning of the end for them. But a new beginning for Caleb and Mae.



This 80s cult horror directed by Kathryn Bigelow is fun! Great cast, good pace and cinematography. Violent and gritty with graphic effects but not particularly gory. Very entertaining.