The Hunger (1983) – Ace Mini-Review + How Ace Are These Vampires?

The Hunger
Starring: Catherine Deneuve, Susan Sarandon, David Bowie
Written by: Ivan Davis, Michael Thomas
Directed by: Tony Scott
U.K./U.S.A., 1983

How good is this movie?

The film definitely has its moments. It gives us vampires who are beautiful, glamorous, and cultured – as they so often are – but also shows us their vulnerable side. It asks what it would be like to live forever and offers some horrifying answers. However, it drags in its second half, it’s not entirely clear how its many plot threads tie together, and the ending is confusing.

How ace is this movie?

Sex and sexual relationships play a big part in this movie. We see John and Miriam behaving sexually with each other and with other people. Sarah also has a boyfriend, and while we don’t see any sex scenes between them we do see one between her and Miriam. Miriam, especially, is defined by her need for a sexual partner. No sooner does she lose her husband than she sets her sights on a replacement lover. While it is possible that her primary need is for companionship rather than sex, all her partnerships appear to have been sexual, and sex is one of the main tools she uses to seduce Sarah. Arguably, Sarah and Miriam embody two different sexual attitudes. Miriam builds relationships on a sexual basis, but also expects love to develop from them. Sarah, although she allows herself to be seduced sexually, rejects Miriam’s offer of a long-term love relationship. This suggests that Sarah does not see sex and love as inextricably tied and is more open to having sex without love. However, neither attitude allows for the possibility of love without sex, or of life without sexual relationships.

How ace are these vampires?

The movie pairs sex with feeding right from the opening scene. John and Miriam drink from the nightclub couple only after seducing them sexually, and Sarah and Miriam feed off each other during their sex scene. Sex is the tool Miriam uses to lure Sarah, and one of the rewards she offers her for becoming a vampire. As she falls under Miriam’s influence, Sarah is equally confused by her irresistible fascination with Miriam and by her irresistible craving for blood. And Miriam is portrayed as a predator in multiple ways, leaving behind her not just a trail of dead bodies but also a string of abandoned lovers.

3 Stars; 2 Aces

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