Coming to theatres Friday from director Andre Ovredal and DreamWorks Pictures comes the frightening tale at sea with THE LAST VOYAGE OF THE DEMETER.
Captain Eliot (Liam Cunningham) is preparing his ship the Demeter for its voyage from Romania to London, England. Looking for crew, he sends Wojchek (David Dastmalchian) out to fill vacancies. Hoping to be chosen is Clemens (Corey Hawkins) who is a physician and well-versed in on how to be part of a crew. The captain’s young grandson Toby (Woody Norman) is saved by Clemens and welcomed aboard the ship.
Loaded and ready to leave port, the ship and crew are excited about the trip to London. The problem is, shipmate Olgaren (Stefan Kapicic) sees something he can not explain but believes Clemens saw it as well on their night shift. Walking through the cargo hold, Clemens discovers a woman, Anna (Aisling Franciosi) covered in dirt.
The physician goes to work trying to save the women while all around the ship strange and horrendous incidents are occurring. Deckhands Abrams (Chris Walley), Larsen (Martin Furulund), Petrofsky (Nikolai Nikolaeff) and cook Joseph (Jon Jon Briones) begin to question who and what is responsible.
What they discover is so heinous that their two-week journey is day and frightening night survival until they can discover how to stop what is determined to destroy them all!
Cunningham as Captain Eliot is a man who knows what is expected of him as a captain responsible for a crew. Having his grandson aboard as well means so much. Keeping a detailed log of the happenings becomes the only way to let the world know what is about to be released in London. I’ve always been a Cunningham fan so it was good to see him again on the big screen this time.
Franciosi as Anna is a total badass from dirt to sea. She knows what’s up and when the crew doesn’t believe her, she still wants to help all she can. Her story is one of a town’s betrayal and she is a fighter! Franciosi gives her character a calm presence in the midst of chaos when the men start losing it. I did wish that she had been more of a focus in the film because her story is totally fascinating and I would have been all on board for that!
Hawkins as Clemens is on his way back to London. Things didn’t work out in Romania and the Demeter is his ticket back. Doing double duty from deck crew to physician, he doesn’t think the world works as it should. I wasn’t moved by this character at all using his non-belief in anything makes him oblivious[JJ1] to the obvious, but thanks for the blood for Anna, right?
I am ALL about the crew, starting with Dastmalchian as Wojchek. In the midst of the crazy, he is trying to keep the ship going straight and fast to its destination. He has his feelings on a few things but when it comes to keeping the ship going, that is his goal. Kapicic as Olgaren knows what’s up and how he will end up.
Walley as Abrams is not going without a serious fight, Furulund as Larsen gets his moment in the night mist, Nikolaeff as Petrofsky wants serious answers and is about to get them and Briones as ships cook Joseph who has a few theories of his own about what is happening on the ship.
Shout out to Javier Botet as the creature of Draucula, well done sir!
Other cast include Graham Turner as the Constable, Vladimir Cabak as the Harbor Master, Andy Murray as Deputy Fisher, Rudolf Danielewicz as the Old Romanian Wiseman, Christopher York as Fletcher and Noureddine Farihi as the One-Eyed Sailor.
THE LAST VOYAGE OF THE DEMETER is based on a chapter from the classic novel DRACULA by Bram Stokes. When I saw what was on the side of one of the crate boxes, a scene from the beautiful 1992 Bram Stokers DRACULA film came instantly to mind.
Besides the first few minutes and the last few minutes of the film, the rest is totally aboard the ship. That in itself is awesome because there really is no where to go in the middle of the ocean. The only thing the crew can do is fight which is what brings the tension, thrills and jumps to the film.
There are a few moments of ridiculousness meaning it is hard for me to believe that the ships crew was not more, shall we say, smart? Of course, that’s easy for me to say sitting comfy in a theatre seat cut commmmmmme oooooooooon! Yes, that’s what I was thinking.
That doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy the film, of course I did. There is nothing sweeter than being swept away in a story of a ship at sea doomed from the start, we just get to see how it plays out as a viewer. As an all-things Dracula person, this is a part of the story where we are not charmed by a very handsome Count but instead drawn in by a monster that has no intention of hiding what it really looks like.
Let it be known that children and animals are not given a free boarding pass for this trip. Grab a friend and prepare for a sea cruise of a different kind.
In the end – the legend of Dracula is born!