bittenParamount Home Entertainment
2008
R

“Maybe this will be the chance we could be together. You know, like forever.”
“Forever’s a long time.”

While working a routine night shift, a paramedic saves the life of a beautiful patient resists being sent to the hospital so passionately that he agrees to let her heal at his place.  But soon enough, he suspects he’s been treating a vampire.  After all, how else can he explain the dead bodies that have been piling up around him?  Now he’s facing with a grueling decision.  Should he feed her addiction, or cut her loose?

Never thought I’d see the day when Jason Mewes would spread his wings and strike out on his own with an acting career independent of his lifelong friend and compadre, one Mr. Kevin Smith.  And while he hasn’t exactly set the world on fire, he seems to be doing just fine as an independent film star, appearing in many over the years.

Here in Bitten, he plays Jack, a graveyard shift Paramedic who’s going through something of an existential crisis – his girlfriend left him for her yoga instructor, he lives in a rat-and-crime infested area of the city, and his job leaves him no time for a social life.  His only solace is his partner, Roger, who himself is the most jaded individual anyone can ask for.  Until one night, coming home from yet another soul-sucking shift, he comes across a woman in the alley by his apartment building, covered in blood and in pain.  After she protests being taken to the hospital, he instead takes her in and cares for her, cleaning her up and giving her aid as much as he possibly can.  Obviously, Roger is incredulous about this idea, noting that any relationship with junkies never end well.  Only, Jack realizes that she’s not a conventional junkie…she’s a vampire!  And her drug of choice is HUMAN BLOOD!  Blah blah!

Okay, yeah, I’m going a bit overboard with this.  I’ll try to dial it back a bit, there.

What I took from Bitten was a feeling that I was watching a metaphor for destructive co-dependent type relationships themselves, using vampirism as symbolism.  Or something.  I mean, take out the whole vampire angle, and just substitute heroin or something like that, and the movie would have still played out the way it did.  But, for its credit, it wasn’t heavy handed, as there’s comedy within the dialog to keep things from getting too “after school special” on us.  The actors – especially between the Roger and Jack characters – gel well together, and you could tell they were having a bit of fun with the material overall.  As a vampire film, it’s a good, gritty low-budget affair, letting he story come to a good boil rather than flash-frying things to a sparkly crisp.

So, in the end, Bitten was more of a satisfying watch than expected.  It premiered on the formerly named Sci-Fi Channel, before landing on video over a year later, which normally doesn’t bode well for a film.  But, in this case, I was pleased with the viewing.  Didn’t set my world on fire, mind you, but it was good for a rental, and as a modern vampire movie it didn’t suck. Go figure.

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