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 blood suckers.

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.



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