questions about Interview with the Vampire (movie)

spoilers obviously-
After they “killed” Lestat the first time, he came back looking like a corpse and claimed he survived by dining on rats and such. Don’t these vampires have healing powers? And what was stopping him from killing a human and drinking their blood? Why was he so decrepit looking? Later in the movie, Louis sees him in some graveyard in New Orleans. Lestat can barely move, and sits weak and fragile on a chair. Why was he in this state?

It seems all he needs is some human blood to get back on his feet. After he drinks from the writer at the very end, he is rejuvenated and healthy once again.

Also - whats the deal with Claudia? What was her importance to the story? Is there some veiled sexual context between her and Louis or Lestat?

Sexual context: Hmmn. An Anne Rice novel about vampires with a heavy pervasive sense of a gay context… Ya think?

One of the reasons Lestat wanted Louis was to give him a connection to that time and a companion to make him want to go on. Without that and with the way Louis and Claudia left, he felt no real reason to do anything more than subsist.

From some articles I have read, Claudia is a representation of the daughter that Anne Rice lost at the same age the character in the book was frozen at.

I think I’ve seen the movie two times, but I’ve read the book a few more, so I’m pretty sure these answers are generally correct and could be applied to either the book or the movie.

Don’t these vampires have healing powers? Yes, they do, but the powers are relative to the “age” of the vampire (how long it has been since they became a vampire,) and the severity of the damage. During the events of Interview, Lestat is rather old but a comparative spring chicken compared to some of the vampires we meet later on in the series. So Lestat, a relatively young vampire with extensive injury is going to take a long time to heal. His resulting weakness is, I believe, what prevents him from killing a human. Rats are about all he can manage. Yes, human blood is the best, and he would get it if he could.

Claudia. Yeah. She always has the body of a child even though years and years go by, which is a source of frustration to her. In the Anne Rice vampire mythology, there is a sexual aspect to the relationship between vampires and the vampires they create. However, if memory serves (I gave up on this series after the 4th book, I think), they are not actually having sexual intercourse in the way that human beings have sex (unlike some other modern vampire stories, like the Anita Blake books or the Buffy series, where they vampires both drink blood and are up for a roll in the hay). For Rice, the sexual release comes from the shared drinking of blood. It’s a really drawn out metaphor, and, IMHO, gets pretty tired fairly quickly.

So Lestat was basically recuperating from his wounds for a few centuries?

I recommend you read the first few books - Anne Rice’s vampire mythology has consistent internal logic. I took the implied sexuality to be more like an irreversible drug addiction.

[Aside] If you’re the real Ronnie James Dio, you owe me a new eardrum. You perforated mine in 1985 during the Holy Diver tour. [/aside]

Be fair now, he was asking about “some veiled sexual context” between Claudia and either Louis or Lestat.

This is, however, almost as silly of a question. Of course there was “some veiled sexual context”! Come on Ronnie James Dio, you were watching the movie, right? The only mystery is how much of a relationship we’re meant to think the characters had, a bit of a tricky question since, as mentioned above, Rice’s vampires can’t and don’t have sex.

If I remember the film properly (and I may not; it’s been a while) it seemed that Lestat always treated Claudia like a child…or a doll. But as she became older Claudia began to think of herself as a mature and erotic being despite her permenantly stunted physical development. I think she was more or less in love with Louis, but that he had somewhat conflicted feelings because of her appearance and their previous father/daughter-like relationship.