From the creators of the HBO TV series, Flight of the Conchords, comes a seriously funny documentary unlike any other about . . . vampires. What We Do in the Shadows is a refreshing bit of cinema that brilliantly plays on a myriad of tropes seen in horror and comedies as well as blatant shout-outs to flicks such as Lost Boys and Twilight.
While they may all have an aversion to sunlight, no reflection, can’t handle pure silver and crucifixes, and need to drink human blood to survive, not all vampires look and act the same. This “documentary” set in New Zealand explores the undead lives of four vampire flatmates – Viago, Vladislav, Deacon, and Petyr – trying to exist in the modern world.
Viago, 379 years old, is the “responsible” one in the house.
Always a gentleman and since he was turned he spends much of his time pining over his one true love. . .
despite the cradle-robbing age difference. (I mean c’mon. What’s a couple hundred years anyway?)
Vladislav, 862 years old is the “bad boy.” Vicious. Lusting.
Unfortunatly, he’s still not over his ex, so much so that he struggles with uh . . . er . . . performance.
Each time he transforms into another creature it seems he just can’t get the face right.
Deacon, clocking in at only 183 years old, is the bad boy of the group.
Rebellious, pompous, and most definitely not a fan of werewolves.
Petyr is the house elder. 8,000 years old but don’t let his age fool you.
While he does have that Nosferatu vibe going for him, he’s really just a quiet guy who mostly keeps to himself in the dark basement.
And then Nick comes along.
Intended for a dinner party, Nick was the latest human turned by Petyr (much to the dismay of Deacon’s servant).
And like many modern day humans, Nick isn’t the type who follows tradition for the sake of it.
Though quite different, they get along in their own fanged way, bonded together by bloody ties. The film isn’t only about vampires. It’s about their struggles with love (love bites as much as they do), fitting into modern society, and simultaneously accepting both their humanity and inhumanity. To keep things creepy, zombies, banshees, and other inhuman types make appearances – even werewolves. And, no surprise to audiences familiar with the genre, vampires and werewolves aren’t too keen on “playing nice” together.
What We Do In The Shadows is one of the wittiest (and at times quite silly) films we’ve seen in years. Think Flight of the Conchords with vampires. If you aren’t a fan of Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi’s work then the humour of this film may be lost on you. And if you’re looking for another romanticized story of vampire lifestyle and trials? You may want to look elsewhere.
But if you’re open to a film that pays homage to vampire lore and cinema while perfectly coupling it with hilariously realistic arguments about who’s turn it is to do the dishes in the house? What We Do in the Shadows should be on your “go watch in theaters” list.
With a limited release last week, US audiences can look forward to this flick hitting big screens nationwide next month (March 2015).