Daybreakers was written and directed by Michael and Peter Spierig. Even though it is a movie about vampires (you know those creatures that drink blood, don't deal with teen angst for 200 years, don't sparkle, and walk around in the daylight) it felt like a mixture of horror, science fiction, and a drama all at once. The concept is original in the realm of bloodsuckers as in this alternate future vampirism has become mainstream and they are the dominating force on the planet with humans nearing extinction number wise.
We are shown that vampires who cannot feed don't die immediately but turn into half human half bad creatures brought up from the original nightmarish vampires that have populated books and movies for years.
Unlike many vampires they turn into a creature devoid of most of their memories who just wants to feed on anything they can which contains blood.
Daybreakers takes an interesting approach on the idea of a food shortage that would arise from overpopulation as there is a 'blood shortage' from an overpopulation of vampires. The leading providers of blood to the populace are desperately attempting to create a synthetic blood that will be nourishing enough to keep the vampires alive and that is where we enter the film. Edward Dalton (Ethan Hawke) plays the lead researcher trying to create this blood and is running into a dead end.
On his way home one night he gets into an accident with a group of humans who are on the run and helps them avoid the police as he doesn't wish for the end of humanity that he dearly misses. The humans are part of a resistance group that is led by Elvis (Willem Dafoe) who accidentally found a cure for the disease. They enlist Edward on a quest to cure this 'disease' that has spread across the world.
The owner of the blood providing company and now one of the most powerful men, or vampires, in the world is Charles Bromley (Sam Neill) who doesn't want this cure to exist as he was dying from cancer before the turn. He is willing to stop at nothing for both the cure to be destroyed and a synthetic blood to be created including working directly against Edward's friends and family. While Sam did an astounding job at playing a genius vampire mad with power and the desire to live forever I felt it would have served him better near the end of the film to have a little more of the craziness that he was able to display in "Event Horizon."
The world created here is a very dark and noir take on humanity. With everyone only able to exist at night and there not being a way to die the world is slightly different. Blood coffee shops are found on every corner, smoking is prevalent, and with the lack of being able to be in the sun the majority of the film is done in a very dark setting that you can't help but enjoy. You are shown, subtly, the various layers of the vampire
society as the film progresses. You are given a huge glimpse into a world that has completely changed from our society but is clearly built upon it and I hope it was able to make enough to warrant a sequel as the world they have created is nothing short of spectacular in it's original viewpoint on an age old monster.