The Lost Boys is a vampire flick that most people think of when reminiscing about the good old days of horror from the 1980's - with good reason, too...it was the first film to star the "Two Coreys" (Corey Feldman and Corey Haim), Kiefer Sutherland, Jason Patric, and Jami Gertz. It was a story that showcased great cliches from the decade with a sprinkling of humor that not only resulted in a box office success but launched several young acting careers. If one were to compile a list of great vampire movies from the '80's, The Lost Boys would most definitely make the list among other greats of the decade such as '87's Near Dark (which was released in the same year), Vamp, Fright Night, and The Hunger.
If you've found difficulty in justifying a viewing of The Lost Boys, or perhaps haven't had the privilege, you should set some time aside from your busy schedule in life - especially if you're a fan of the genre. I am, however, writing this review from the assumption that you have already watched the original - so now, onto the sequel!
The plot concerns a young brother and sister, Chris and Nicole, that move to Luna Bay after the death of their parents. Chris, with the intention of getting a job, vists a local surfboard shop and runs into Edgar Frog (Corey Feldman) and leaves him his address. He is later approached by former surfing legend, Shane Powers (Angus Sutherland, Kiefer's half-brother), who is holding a party at his residence and wants him to attend. Unbeknownst to Chris, Shane is a vampire. During the proceedings that evening, Shane seduces Nicole into vampirism. With the help of Edgar, a seasoned vampire hunter, Chris must devise a plan to not only save his sister but destroy the evil that holds a tight rein over the town.
You know, if this film had any other title other than Lost Boys (sic) attached to it, I may even go on to call it decent...but alas, the instant they tacked on the moniker and put forth this shoddy effort to follow up such a great film, it immediately plummeted into the depths. There are several instances where they paid tribute to the original, one hilarious scene involves a shirtless saxophone player wearing chains - if anyone has seen the original they know this reference well.
Corey Feldman reprises his role as Edgar Frog, going beyond that of just a mere cameo as the film's production originally called for. A role for Corey Haim had become available after all, despite all of the drama. He shows up halfway through the end credits as Sam (a character he portrayed at the age of 16 in the original) and spouts forth a few lines - unfortunately, it's been documented that he was under the influence of drugs and could not remember his lines, thus more scenes involving him were strategically removed on the cutting room floor.
Tom Savini provides a brief appearance for enthusiastic audiences as a vampire in the beginning of the film. Almost immediately we witness a pathetic attempt at the sequel trying to be cool and hip much like the original, but without the charm. Instead we're mocked with a mere pantomime; in no fewer words, it's just not the same. The level of gore is respectable but there some effects present that certainly exude an "After Effects" feel to them which is expected because the budget couldn't have been enormous. Feldman's character manages to steal the show, in my opinion, and I'm sure others would agree if they're faithful fans. The song "Cry Little Sister" by Gerard McMann and Michael Mainieri played a popular role in the original film and the remake attempted to pay tribute by providing a cover of it - a sad choice in the long run because it's far inferior and sounds crappy...for a lack of a better word.
I wouldn't stop anyone from checking this film out if they loved the original from '87 so much. Even heading in with an open mind might leave you disappointed, because other than the name "Lost Boys", the film doesn't manage to capitalize on the great atmosphere that existed before. It was a magical moment in time that featured young and upcoming actors with an enthusiastic director that really wanted to make things happen; because of that, a classic was born.
If Lost Boys 2: The Tribe were a person and you gazed into its eyes, you'd be met with a cold, dead stare...emotionless and far removed from any form of livelihood. A third film in the franchise was just recently produced entitled Lost Boys: The Thirst and its release is slated for October of 2010. It will star Corey Feldman once more, paired up with Jamison Newlander as Alan Frog, Edgar's brother from the first movie. If this entry solely relies on those two to make it work, then we may be in for a surprise. Only time will tell.