Habit (1997)


Habit, 1997
directed by Larry Fessenden
starring Larry Fessenden, Aaron Beall, Meredith Schnaider

A remake of his own earlier film, Larry Fessenden writes, directs, and stars in this dark, vampire-drama, Habit. Told in extremely bleak fashion, the film follows a drunk with little direction in his life right after the death of his parents and breakup with his girlfriend. Shortly afterwards, he mets a perplexing and secretive girl that, depending on how you see the situation, he falls for or is seduced by. As things become stranger and more inexplicable, through a blurry drunken mess Sam (Fessenden), begins to panic and question what is really going on.


While very darkly themed and with a decent bit of blood, Habit probably isn’t a traditional horror movie. It’s almost like a macabre fairly tale, but with a very gritty, slow build up taking place in New York City. Fessenden is fantastic in the lead role, engaging, convincing, and interesting all at the same time. No one around him is unbelievable or stutters enough for it to be too noticeable, but he really shines in his own movie.


Perhaps it’s hindsight from seeing so many similar movies since, but I felt that Habit took a little too long to tell its story and was a touch predictable. It was never boring, and none of the buildup is completely irrelevant, with most of it designed to really familiarize the audience into the mess of a life that the main character leads. However, the end was perhaps a little sudden, and I think would have been much more effective with a few of the darker secrets of the film being revealed earlier. Regardless, the movie is very impressive not only for the budget, but Fessenden as an actor and director early on in his career. If the brief plot description appeals to you, Habit likely won’t disappoint.



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