The first few minutes of John Carpenter's Vampires--in which James Woods' vampire killer leads a dawn raid on a New Mexico "goon nest" of bloodsuckers--not only suggests a horror movie that refuses to pull its punches, but even evokes some of the more disturbing dream-memories of American Westerns. Muscular and uncompromising, the sequence suggests a new Carpenter classic unravelling before one's eyes. Things don't quite work out that way, but this is still a film to reckon with. There are a few serious (and surprising) misjudgements on the director's part, particularly... a mishandling of Sheryl Lee's role as a prostitute poisoned by the bite of a "master vampire" (who pretty much wiped out Woods' team of goon terminators). But aside from some weaknesses, the action is jolting, the suggested complicity of the Catholic Church in destroying monsters is provocative, and the traces of Howard Hawks' continuing influence on Carpenter's storytelling are in evidence. -- Tom Keogh, Amazon.com [show more]
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John Carpenter directs this horror based on the novel by John Steakley. When Jack Crow (James Woods)'s team of mercenary vampire hunters is slaughtered by the master vampire Valek (Thomas Ian Griffith), he teams up with Montoya (Daniel Baldwin) to fight back. Their only link to Valek is the beautiful, psychic prostitute Katrina (Sheryl Lee), and with her help they set out to confront the ultimate evil.