"...an isolated Alaskan town ... is plunged into darkness for a month each year when the sun sinks below the horizon. As the last rays of light fade, the town is attacked by a bloodthirsty gang of vampires bent on an uninterrupted orgy of destruction"
Yeah, OK, I can see that, sort of. Vampires fear sunlight. During winter at high latitudes there is no sunlight for a long periods. Makes sense for the photophobic undead to winter over in northern Alaska. I'd bet you could write a whole story around the idea, a good story. I suspect 30 Days of Night, an "Uninterrupted orgy of destruction," isn't that story, but I think it could be done. Though it might be kind of hard to bite people on the neck when they're bundled up in long underwear and three layers of polar fleece topped by a hooded parka (yeah, that's right, when there's no sunlight for a couple of months, there's also no heat. It's 40 to 60F below zero, have fun with that, Bloodsuckers). Ever been out in that kind of weather? All that vampire drool and glycerin blood that movie directors are so fond of these days, would freeze your fangs. Biting somebody at those temperatures would be a lot like licking a metal flag pole. I don't recommend it, though it does present some interesting comedic possibilities for a vampire movie. This isn't my kind of movie, though I imagine I'll see it eventually just out of morbid (heh) curiosity, when it shows up in the bargain bin for $3. Reason I bring it up is that it's supposed to be set in small town Alaska. Hell, I live in small town Alaska, naturally a Vampire movie set in Alaska gets my attention, which brings me to yet another of my pet peeves. Where was this movie filmed?
Auckland, New Zealand.
New Zealand? Land of Hobbits, oh yeah, New Zealand looks just exactly like northern Alaska. Probably no shortage of quirky local oddballs willing to work for cheap either. Put some Carharts on 'em, add a bad Minnesotan or Canadian accent and some ersatz snow and viola, instant Alaskans!
This movie continues a long, long trend of making movies and TV shows supposedly set in Alaska pretty much anywhere else but Alaska. I will say that at least Auckland is something new, usually movies about Alaska are filmed in Canada or California. Need some examples?
Mystery, Alaska: A funny movie. I actually like this movie a lot despite the fake "Alaskan" accents (God sakes!), far too much winter daylight for the supposed location, and Mike Meyers. Filming location: Alberta, Canada
North To Alaska: I like this movie too, I'm just a sucker for John Wayne formula flicks. But for crying out loud, filmed in Big Bear, California, USA? Oh yeah, just exactly like Nome.
Men in Trees: Thank god this cliche-ridden piece of HBO crap didn't last past the pilot season. Minnesota accents and raccoons! Yeah, we've just got shitloads of raccoons in Alaskan, and no hair dryers. Filmed in British Columbia, Canada - and they can keep it.
Northern Exposure: Every town in Alaska is filled with billionaire ex-astronauts, angry female bush pilots, and philosophical radio DJ's - all desperate to highjack a real doctor from Outside, you know, because there aren't any doctors in Alaska, or Jewish people apparently. I hated this stupid show. Filmed in Washington, USA.
Alaska: Admittedly a kid's movie, but the pre-teen protagonists befriend a wild polar bear? Yeah, from the inside maybe. And just FYI, polar bears don't range south of the Brooke's Range. Idiots. Filmed in British Columbia, Canada.
Snow Dogs: Again a kid's movie. Typical Disney piece of crap. Poor acting. Silly, cliched done to death plot. Even the sled dogs are Hollywood fakes, prize team my ass. Filmed in Alberta, Canada.
The Call of the Wild: When I first moved to Alaska I was advised to always carry a copy of the Jack London novel whenever I went into the bush - because the paper pages make a dandy fire starter. Filmed in Washington, USA
On the Beach (TV version): Filmed in Melbourne, Australia, which I can see because the story mostly takes place there, but there is a critical scene where the submarine skipper and his XO explore radiation killed Anchorage looking for the source of a radio transmission. I don't know where that was filmed, but it sure as hell wasn't Anchorage, Alaska. I will say this about On the Beach, improbable science aside, this is one dammed scary movie - it actually gave me nightmares. Armand Assante had the part of a sub skipper down cold.
Now there have been plenty of movies filmed in Alaska, mostly documentaries where you just can't fake the location. But there was the big budget Al Pacino flop, Insomnia, which was filmed in Alaska, sort of. At least a couple of the location scenes were; the rest of it was filmed in Canadian studios. I actually liked this movie - not for Al's phoned-in acting and the whiny "I can't sleep because it's light out" bullshit - but because somebody shoots Robin Williams in the end. [I originally called this a "Dinero Movie." Sorry Bob, no insult intended. You rock, Sir]
And then, of course, there's Grizzly Man, actually filmed mostly in and around Katmai National Park, Alaska. A biopic, based on the king of all drooling misguided eco-freak whackjobs, Tim Treadwell, who managed to get both himself and his idiot girl friend eaten alive. Actually I would have preferred that they'd filmed this well made tribute to utter stupidity somewhere else, say like Malibu.
No matter where it was filmed, I doubt 30 Days of Night will be a big hit here in Alaska. All real Alaskans know that there's nothing to fear in the dark of the arctic winter, the real bloodsuckers come out in summer, when the sun is in the sky 24 hours a day - they are called Mosquitoes and they will drain you dry.
Oh, the horror, the horror!
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