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Perfect Creature (2007)
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Glenn Standring

Starring:
Dougray Scott/Silus
Saffron Burrows/Lilly
Leo Gregory/Edgar
Scott Wills/Jones
7 10
PLOT-CRUNCH
Vampires to the left, humans to the right – co-habiting together in peace – everybody’s peachy. That’s until some bloodsucker anomaly runs amuck and starts feeding on peeps like Rosie O Donnell murders muffins at a bake sale. Will good vamp Silus (Scott) and sizzling 5.0. hottie (Burrows) nab the f*cker before he ruins everything? My money is on… well nothing… got rent to pay and when I say rent, I mean “hook and ers".
THE LOWDOWN

Humans and vampires have lived in harmony.... until now. . .

I still remember the online buzz that surfaced after Perfect Creature was picked up by FOX at the 2005 Cannes Film Festival. I had made a mental marker on the flick (yes me need life) because it had a strong cast and its concept sounded pretty money to me. And then nothing happened, the movie fell off the face of the “insert name of planet here”. Well I finally got to see this bad to the fang effort at the Fantasia Film Festival (Its DVD release is also upon us soon – July 17, 2007) and although I grooved to it; I could see why FOX was hesitant to whip out the Ding-Dong parade for it.

Perfect Creature pierced my flesh off the bat via its tantalizing premise and then reeled me in effortlessly like the trout that I am into the visually arresting pond it was set in. Think film noir with sprinkles of 1960 aesthetics (loved those Zeppelins), two cups of Gothic (let it rain baby) and a pinch of modern. Good little mix there and thankfully it gelled and was executed in a refreshingly grounded fashion. Substance wise; although the structure/plot turns were somewhat déjà vu; its random spins on known conventions within the vamp subgenre were dizzying ones. Vampires that live in cahoots with humans as pseudo “guardian angels/monks/priest”? WHAAAA? Somebody smoked some of that wacky-tabaky and came up with some fly shit! I was all up in that novel premise and loving it!

The same can be barked about the unraveling of events; which was evenly paced and driven by characters, strong dialogue and situation. Shite, even its love story was put out in a low-key and restrained fashion. And it worked! Sometimes less is more and it applied here! It’s always swell to see a flick take a different path than the one you’d expect due to its “mainstream appeal” premise. If there’s a flipside to Underworld; this film would be it. Now that’s not say that there wasn’t some Pop Corn in the house. A couple of the physical get downs (with the baddie’s initial escape being the best of the lot) had me sitting up and I mucho dug the to the grit hand to hand fight near the end. With that said; I feel the lack of flashy and grand scale action set pieces is why this puppy was shelved. There wasn't enough enough eye candy for a film of its ilk to appeal to the masses. I wasn’t bothered much by it (okay maybe a little) since I was consumed by the story, but yes, you do need a leveled attention span to digest this one.

Alas, all wasn’t perfect in this garden of rose red roses. I got a little bamboozled by the “why” behind everything; it became more and more intricate as the clock ticked forward. Problem was, I was more interested in the “core” of this tale (vamp hunts vamp with dame) and my minuscule brain had a tendency to shut off when the “exposition” kicked in. But my biggest peeve with the flick had to do with its knack of playing “lets not kill the bad guy to serve the plot” game all the time. For the love of “real tits” how many times do you have to have this clown pinned down and see him escape before you decide to nip him in the bud already? It kinda of got silly after a while and was a damn shame since the rest of the time; the flick was always true to itself. Should’ve found better ways to have the villain live than the heroes freezing like Bambi caught in headlights when around him.

By and large though; I genuinely enjoyed Perfect Creature. Its mature tone; character driven nature, subdued yet efficient love story and obvious efforts of going against the grain when it came to clichés within the vampire subgenre appealed to me. Moreover; I can gawk at Saffron “work of art” Burrows for hours on end and call it a fulfilling existence but that’s just me and my snowballs talking. Now, will you tame this creature or neuter it?

GORE
Wet get messy vamp bites, blood here and there and some light stabbing. Very red wet but not too graphic.
ACTING
You can’t go wrong with Dougray Scott (Silus) playing it down, brooding like he was going for the James Dean Award while managing to emote like mad via his expressive eyes. You just can’t! I’ve been a fan of Saffron Burrows (Lilly) and her pouty lips since Deep Blue Sea and it’s always a treat to see her and her pucker do their thing onscreen. Leo Gregory (Edgar) was utterly convincing as the raving mad vamp renegade. I bought it! Scott Wills (Jones) was on the money as the “vamp-phobic” cop with a chip on his chip.
T & A
Saffron Burrows kept her clothes on but hey, there always this GREAT STUFF to fall back on. The ladies get…NO SOUP FOR YOU!
DIRECTING
Glenn Standring dipped his baby in potent dread filled atmosphere, offered up a couple of glossy shots and helmed the whole with an assured hand (or foot; take your pick). He knew when to hold back to serve the story and when to jazz it up to well…jazz it up! I was particularly fond of the way he visually expressed the vampires’ acute sense of smell and hearing. Nifty!
SOUNDTRACK
We back-handed with an un-intrusive yet very fitting score that echoed the dire happenings and the dark vibe of the film ideally.
BOTTOM LINE
You in the mood for a bit of meat? Then I recommend you chow down on this character and situation driven rib-steak. Unique concepts, solid acting, clever plays on common vamp devices…and all lathered in a entrancing, somber coating too boot. All good! Yes, additional action bits and fewer cop-outs as to nipping the bad guy in the bud would’ve been nice but hey, this is what we got, and I for one, or two, or three found enough quality in this odd sock to call myself Mr. Satisfied. Hope you do to! The End.
BULL'S EYE
Jonathon Rhys-Meyers' was set to play Edgar, but had to book out due to scheduling clashes.|

Dougray Scott was cast as Wolverine in X-Men (2000), but schedule conflict with the Mission: Impossible II shoot forced him to bow out.

Glenn Standring also helmed the cult horror flick The Irrefutable Truth About Demons
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6:47PM on 07/10/2007
My review is in the Horror Review Section. I made mostly the same comments but with much less talented reviewing skills. Props to Arrow for nailing it perfectly !
My review is in the Horror Review Section. I made mostly the same comments but with much less talented reviewing skills. Props to Arrow for nailing it perfectly !
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