86 min - Comedy | Horror
Review: Matt Mungle
If your funny bone is a little bit twisted then WHAT WE DO IN
THE SHADOWS will tickle it quite nicely. A quirky script and characters
that are non stereotypical help elevate this into instant cult
standing for the comedy horror genre. It turns the vampire world
upside down and adds a perfect modernization to these timeless
Viago (Taika Waititi), Deacon (Jonathan Brugh), and Vladislav
(Jemaine Clement) are flatmates who face many of the same struggles
as any roomies do. There is the dividing of chores, the messes,
the lack of privacy. They often get on each others nerves but
for the most part they are pretty good chums. It ia hard being
tolerant of other's flaws; especially when your several hundred
years old. Each of them is a vampire with pet peeves and idiosyncrasies.
They spend much of their nightlife seeking tasty humans to drink
on. But as they get older and older they have a harder and harder
time fitting in to the evolving culture. When they bring "new"
vampire into their lives he might be the one to help them become
a little more hip. And they have to teach him the basics of surviving
as a vampire.
The film is shot as a mockumentary. A camera crew is allowed
to follow the daily lives of these three guys (with a clause in
the contract that they will not be eaten) and record the mundane.
With a styling in the vain of the Christopher Guest movies this
one hilariously keeps the viewer guessing as to which direction
the humor will go. The jokes and wit are both fresh and unpredictable.
Jemaine Clement, Taika Waititi also wrote the script and have
designed three out of the box characters who take their personalities
to the extreme.
If you like high brow humor and sarcastic puns are lost on you
then you might not appreciate the effort. But those willing to
let loose and laugh at well crafted absurdity will love it. Vampires
are begging to be made fun of. They welcome flamboyancy and outrageous
egos. Mix that with the world mere mortals live in and you have
the makings of a seldom seen comedy. The script uses all the stereotypes
and gives them a pop of color.
WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS is unrated but with the content language
and moments of gore it would be best for those 18 and older. It
reminds me of the late night festival offerings that shock and
amaze and split your sides. I give it 4 out of 5 velvet ropes.
A pleasant surprise and a break from the normal horror comedy.