In the past few years, the vampire film has been in the forefront of our cultural zeitgeist.

With popular, blood-sucking fare like the 'Twilight' films and the top-rated HBO show 'True Blood' heating up your movie and TV screens, one might think that the genre has reached its zenith and that the trend might be on its last legs -- or, more appropriately, has been sucked dry.

Swooping into theaters Friday is 'Daybreakers,' a vampire movie highly touted by fan-boy sites like Cinematical and CHUD as a "smarter, more refreshing take on the vampire genre" and "unique," respectively. The premise of the film is quite simple: Vampires take over as the dominant species in the year 2019, with humans now on the run, fearing that they will be relocated to high-tech, blood-draining farms by the vamps. In the past few years, the vampire film has been in the forefront of our cultural zeitgeist.

With popular, blood-sucking fare like the 'Twilight' films and the top-rated HBO show 'True Blood' heating up your movie and TV screens, one might think that the genre has reached its zenith and that the trend might be on its last legs -- or, more appropriately, has been sucked dry.

Swooping into theaters Friday is 'Daybreakers,' a vampire movie highly touted by fan-boy sites like Cinematical and CHUD as a "smarter, more refreshing take on the vampire genre" and "unique," respectively. The premise of the film is quite simple: Vampires take over as the dominant species in the year 2019, with humans now on the run, fearing that they will be relocated to high-tech, blood-draining farms by the vamps.

What is truly nifty about this playful reversal on the vampire story line is the attention to details in creating a wholly constructed vampire-run world: completely covered, sleek black cars with peripheral video systems; blood packs as the new milk carton; talking alarm clocks that tell you when the sun is about to rise; etc.

But is the film that inventive and well-executed?

After catching the film at a press screening, I can say this: 'Daybreakers' is without a doubt a refreshing concept, but in no way is it a game-changer, like, say 'Let The Right One In' proved to be when it hit theaters in 2008 -- creating a surprisingly realistic yet disquieting world surrounding a vampire character.

The welcome difference is in the film's attempt to capture a unique world solely built by and for vampires; and, thankfully, it lacks any romance; I'm sick of seeing another blood-thirsty beau like 'Twilight's Edward harmlessly lusting after a human girl like Bella. It's a tired motif, and with 'Eclipse' just around the corner and 'Breaking Dawn' in development, the not-so-Twihards are in need of a reprieve at the theater.

Watch the 'Daybreakers' Trailer:


Of course, the actual conceit of 'Daybreakers' may not be entirely novel. There are clearly echoes of the 'Blade' films (with a little bit of 'Matrix' thrown in) in the premise of a struggling vampire population living off harvested human fodder. Also, the bulk of the dialogue lands more on the side of campy one-liners ("F*** it, let's have a barbecue."), and directors Peter and Michael Spierig are ill-equipped when it comes to building and sustaining heart-thumping moods, choosing to use cheap scares and thrills (such as using screaming bats as jarring wipes) in order to quickly jolt the audience. The effect is more comic book than horrifying thriller.

On the imaginative concept alone, vampire fans should eat up this cheeseball scare-fest. Movie buffs, on the other hand, might want to check out 1987's 'Near Dark' for a more genuine, vamp-tastic experience; it was current Oscar-front-runner Kathryn Bigelow's marvelously electrifying, moody ode to the ever-present genre.