If wine, roses, and romantic comedies aren’t your cup of tea for Valentine’s Day, you’re not alone. Whether you choose to cozy up with a loved one or choose to do the solitary thing, if you’re into both horror and dark romance, this list is for you. And no list of dark romance movies would be complete with vampires. Ours is no exception. Enjoy!
Interview with the Vampire
Based on the Anne Rice novel, this is the darkly seductive and alluring tale of Louis, as told to a mortal reporter. He tells of his transformation to vampire at the hands of Lestat, followed by his 200-year journey from colonial New Orleans to France and Eastern Europe, back to New Orleans and eventually to San Francisco, where the reporting is taking place. Rice’s vampires retain their soul and personality, so Louis’ story is strongly emotional as well as factual. He describes both the ecstasy of feeding and his revulsion at the need to feed. It doesn’t hurt that the leads of Louis and Lestat are played by Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise, respectively as well as a young Kirsten Dunst in a standout role. A must see for vampire lovers.
Bram Stoker’s Dracula
True to its name, this more recent remake of the 1974 classic tells of Vlad, a mortal driven mad by the death of his wife who then becomes the vampire Dracula. 400 years later, he travels to England in search of his solicitor’s fiancé, Mina, first seen in a photograph of Jonathan Harker, the solicitor. While Harker (Keanu Reeves) is held prisoner at Dracula’s castle, Mina (Winona Ryder) is pursued, wooed, and eventually seduced by Dracula. The story departs slightly from the source material in that Dracula is driven more by love than by vengeance, and in the end refuses to turn Mina into a vampire but instead insists that she finish him off and give him peace at last. Also watch out for Monica Bellucci’s American film debut as one of Dracula’s brides. Ah, l’amour!
My Bloody Valentine 3-D
A departure from the vampire story but with plenty of hearts, albeit human ones, to keep up the Valentine mood, this remake of the 1981 film is for the true horror/slasher fan. The story centers around four survivors of a teen massacre that occurred ten years earlier in a mine and ended with a couple dozen dead bodies and the eventual death of the miner responsible. As the survivors reunite, the killings start up again and speculation runs wild as to whether the original miner, Harry, is still alive. The deaths by pickaxe provide enough gore to satisfy any true horror lover, and the idea of giving one’s heart, in a Valentine’s gift box, no less, takes on whole new meaning.
Bride of Chucky
Who doesn’t love a pair of children’s dolls inhabited by the souls of a former serial killer and his one-time girlfriend? In this sequel to the original Chucky movie (both of which, plus their sequels, you can easily watch back to back through platforms like Netflix and DirecTV), Tiffany is intent on reviving Charles Lee Ray’s soul-in-a-doll. She restores the doll and the soul but is later tricked into having her own soul transferred to a bride doll and becoming just like her former lover. Intent on regaining human bodies, they trick a couple of young lovers into taking them back to Ray’s grave, where they believe is the magic they need to take over the bodies of the young couple. Murder and mayhem ensue as they try to avoid detection during the trip, which also includes a gratuitous dolls-having-sex scene on a hotel room floor. Now, that’s love.
The Bride of Frankenstein
Returning to the monster in love ideal, this twist on the ending of the original Frankenstein story finds the monster alive and trying to live among humans, while his scientist creator tries to distance himself from his sinister past. Unfortunately, a second mad scientist, Dr. Pretorius, discovers and then persuades the now almost-human monster (famously played by Boris Karloff) to assist him in coercing Dr. Frankenstein into resuming his experiments by creating a bride and companion for the original monster, who is now lonely. While marital bliss does not necessarily follow the successful creation of the bride, this movie is a must see for fans of the classics.
If you like your romance with a twist for Valentine’s Day, this movie list is for you. So grab the popcorn, the wine and chocolates, and sit back and enjoy some spine-tingling fare.