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critics consensus

Buffy the Vampire Slayer's supernatural coming of age tale is let down by poor directing and even poorer plotting -- though Kristy Swanson and Paul Reubens' game performances still manage to slay. Read critic reviews

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer Photos

Movie Info

For Buffy Summers (Kristy Swanson), nothing is the same after she meets Merrick Jamison-Smythe (Donald Sutherland). Merrick tells the teen that he's been sent to train her to fight vampires, and he proves himself by displaying his supernatural powers. Buffy is a quick study, and soon takes fellow student Oliver Pike (Luke Perry) under her wing, repeatedly saving him from fierce bloodsuckers. But, when a very dangerous vampire (Rutger Hauer) gets rambunctious, she must go to war again.

Cast & Crew

Kristy Swanson
Buffy Summers
Luke Perry
Oliver Pike
Donald Sutherland
Merrick Jamison-Smythe
Michele Abrams
Jennifer Walkens
Hilary Swank
Kimberly Hannah
Paris Vaughan
Nicole Bobbittson
Carol Baum
Executive Producer
Sandy Gallin
Executive Producer
Fran Rubel Kuzui
Executive Producer
Kaz Kuzui
Producer
Carter Burwell
Original Music
Danny Elfman
Original Music
Rob Halford
Original Music
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News & Interviews for Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Critic Reviews for Buffy the Vampire Slayer

All Critics (53) | Top Critics (16) | Fresh (19) | Rotten (34)

Audience Reviews for Buffy the Vampire Slayer

  • May 24, 2014
    It's amazing how we now have two interpretations of the same material and can look back at how phenomenal the TV show and awful the movie still are. BtVS the film covers the same material as the show about a popular, superficial cheerleader who is chosen to defend the world against vampires. But its attempts at tongue in cheek humour are way too forced. The vampires' make up and costumes are cringe-worthy bad. Even the sound is terrible as some scenes have a noticeable echo in the dialogue despite the characters being in a car with the windows rolled up. No actor seems connected to the material. It was clearly a paycheck for Donald Sutherland and Luke Perry where Kristy Swanson and her co-stars seem happy that they're in a movie. The themes of an ordinary girl changing under extraordinary circumstances or the metaphor of the vampires as symbolic of teenage anxieties are there but left unexplored. There is nothing good about the BtVS film and anyone curious about it should stay far away less it taint their perception of the TV series.
    Edward B Super Reviewer
  • Oct 09, 2011
    Buffy the Vampire Slayer is an average horror comedy that is purely designed to be fun and entertaining. Though flawed, and not perfect, the film manages to be quite amusing. However the film is no where close to the TV series, which was darker, better executed and acted. Not saying that this film is bad, but this film has a lot of room for improvement. There are plenty of comedic moments here and there, and the cast are good, but not great. As far as a horror comedy is concerned, Buffy the Vampire Slayer works well enough to entertain, but leaves a lot to be desired. The film is lots of fun, and manages to be effective at being a good vampire flick; however the film is not as memorable as say, The Lost Boys or Fright Night. For what it is, Buffy the Vampire Slayer is a cool, little gem of a film, with nothing that's ever spectacular. But I will say this; this is definitely not a bad film. The film can easily be seen as a guilty pleasure, as it's not perfect, but it does manage to be amusing. I thought that Buffy the Vampire Slayer was a good film, nothing exceptionally great. In the end, this is a silly horror comedy that is fun, despite the fact that it's never anything remarkable. Buffy the Vampire Slayer is an entertaining but flawed film, and it's not as bad as everyone says it is. If you enjoy a mindless vampire comedy, this is a film to check out.
    Alex r Super Reviewer
  • Jul 21, 2011
    Now a very stereotypical vampire film with all the cliches and predictable stuff you can imagine which now is really quite lame to watch even if you look past the cute retro appeal. The effects and makeup are very basic much like the acting but at the end of the day this was a film for teenage girls to swoon over Luke Perry hehe Teenage boys had Swanson whilst an air of class was attemped with the inclusion of Hauer and Sutherland, Hauer looking your typical classic Dracula in tucks, flowing cape with slick back hair and Sutherland your typical Sherlock Holmes clothed Van Helsing type. If you look closer there is actually quite a strong cast in there, at the time of course they were all unknowns. Its all silly childish stuff as it was meant to be but very dated now and pretty crappy.
    Phil H Super Reviewer
  • May 12, 2011
    While the TV show became a cultural phenomenon and helped establish strong central female characters in pop culture, the film is a forgettable bore. Except for Luke Perry . . . I like Luke Perry.
    Alec B Super Reviewer

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