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Aaliyah can be my Queen Anytime

Movie Review of
Queen of the Damned
by Cancer

I stepped into the movie theater with little expectation and even less enthusiasm when I went to see the Warner Brothers theatrical release of Anne Rice's Queen of the Damned. If you followed the Internet hype and gossip (And of that there was plenty), then almost everything you heard about the film was negative. From the start there were production problems. If Warner Brothers failed to begin production by October 2000, the movie rights would have reverted back to Anne Rice. None of the original cast wanted to return for the sequel, and Lestat was cast several times before Stuart Townsend finally filled the role.

Queen of the Damned attempts to squeeze two stories into one movie. There are aspects from both The Vampire Lestat and The Queen of the Damned in this film. However, this film should not be considered a representation of Anne Rice's third Vampire Chronicle.

Louis, Gabrielle, Daniel, and Mekare do not appear in the film. Khayman, Pandora, and Armand are listed in the credits, but they are never referred to by name or introduced in the movie. This leaves you guessing who is actually who.

A great amount of liberty was taken with the story line. David Talbot tells Jesse that Marius is the sire of Lestat. The Vampire Lestat reveals that Magnus is Lestat's sire. Marius sires Armand. The history of the vampires is never revealed. It is, in my opinion, the history which makes Queen of the Damned a good read. Lestat has black hair for unexplained reasons and also walks in the daylight.

All of this being said, Queen of the Damned is a good movie. You just have to forget about the novels. You have to forget everything you know about the Vampire Chronicles and watch it strictly as a vampire film. If done in this manner, you should be more than satisfied.

The color and architecture used in the movie are superb. Queen of the Damned is visually rich. The bathtub scene with Lestat and Akasha is incredibly erotic. For the first time, vampire movements are represented properly, in the opinion of this critic.

The music (done by Jonathan Davis of Korn) provides a dark gothic under tone for the movie. He provides all of the vocals for Lestat's band Satan's Night Out.

Akasha, played by Aaliyah, delivers a stunning performance. Her movements are sublime. She is the epitome of beauty, evil, and seduction. Aaliyah's real life death in a plane crash in 2001 only adds to her eerie performance in the film.

Townsend delivers a surprise performance as Lestat. Townsend is Irish, yet does a remarkable French accent for the film (Tom Cruise didn't even attempt this in Interview with the Vampire). His movements are also in the same vampire vein prevalent throughout the film.

Vincent Perez portrays Marius. He doesn't do a Roman accent (As Marius is suppose to be Roman, although this is never indicated in the film), but also is quite likeable in the movie.

Queen of the Damned doesn't follow the Vampire Chronicles but that doesn't make it a bad movie. The question is, whether or not Anne Rice's fans will overlook this.

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