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What We Do In The Shadows - Film Review

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by Lyn Spiteri (subscribe)
Hi-ho, I'm Lyn! --- Aussie. Teacher. Musician. Twin. Fan of film, TV, literature & musical theatre. Love fab friends & family, Star Wars & overall groovyness of life. -- Check out my blog at
Published September 28th 2014
Ever wondered what living with vampires would be like?
what we do in the shadows
What We Do In The Shadows (2014)

Ever since Twilight sunk its glittery-framed fangs into popular culture, the subject of vampires has been exceedingly topical. In fact, what with shows like Vampire Diaries, Teen Wolf and The Walking Dead taking over our TV screens the undead have never been more alive.

What We Do In The Shadows lurks (unabashedly awkwardly) into this maelstrom of mythical-modern-mash-ups and it is a refreshing and entertaining take. This mockumentary introduces us to three flatmates in modern-day New Zealand and invites us to follow their day-to-day struggles with affairs of the heart, managing their living arrangements and meeting new people. The catch of course, is that the trio are hundred-year-old vampires, complete with a Nosferatu-like chum in a crypt in the basement, a general dislike for doing dishes and cleaning blood off furniture and navigating a night-life that is motivated solely by appetite (for humans that is). The audience is given fascinating insight into this underworld of first-world-problems (including literally beastly exes and the challenge of devising costume ideas for the upcoming Unholy Masquerade Ball) as two newcomers are welcomed into the fold.

The cast are fantastic. Self-confessed pervert Vladislav (played by Flight of the Conchords alum Jemaine Clement) is joined by the endearingly flouncy Viago (Taika Waititi) and the brutishly blunt Deacon (Jonathan Brugh) who are all utterly convincing and instantly likeable. All members of the supporting cast are equally believable in their roles, particularly newbie-vampire (and blabbermouth) Nick (Cori Gonzalez-Macuer), his unassuming human pal Stu (Stuart Rutherford) and Jackie (Jackie van Beek) who acts as Deacon's go-to-maid in her desperate attempts to be turned into a vampire. Flight of the Conchord fans will get a real kick out of seeing Rhys Darby, who cameos (and effortlessly scene-steals) as Anton, the leader of a werewolf pack and the trio's main rivals.

What We Do In The Shadows is oozing with realism and humour, with some eerily tense and freaky moments thrown in for good measure. I laugh (and scare) easily so this film delivers in spades; seriously though, there are several frightening sequences, with the vampires and werewolves depicted in all their ruthless, violent and humourless glory. The film succeeds in subverting the muddying threads that have been weaved through a genre that should instead be cloaked in mystery, horror and shadow. Don't wait to be invited, just give this one a watch.

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Why? The funniest vampire movie around
When: Out now
Where: In cinemas
Cost: Varies
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