Vampires have to be so cool nowadays. They must be sexy and sparkling and shirtless, or preppy young girls at a hip school for blood-drinking.
And I, for one, am tired of it. I don’t need vampires to reflect the trends of my modern, youthful generation — if I wanted any of that, I’d actually leave the house and spend time with my modern, youthful generation. What we need more of are the old, decrepit vampires; the ones who spend most of their time in coffins and can’t perform a single action without giving off an unpleasant musk of sexual tension.
And that’s exactly what What We Do in the Shadows provides — weird, old, sexually ambiguous vampires. Also funny ones, but that’s beside the point. It’s a mockumentary horror comedy, written, directed and starring Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi (the guy behind Eagle vs. Shark), and it promises all the laughs that one normally associates with draining human bodies of blood for sustenance. Seriously, though — the trailer offers up twelve different quotes of “hilarious,” all from different film-y publications. At that point, I’m willing to venture that it might actually be hilarious.
The film follows a camera crew that follows a group of vampires currently sharing an apartment in New Zealand — Viago (Waititi), a romantic dandy fop of a vamp; Vladislav (Clement), a blood and guts Vlad the Impaler-type; and Deacon (Jonathan Brugh), the young blood of the group, at the tender age of 183. But they’re soon joined by a brand-new vampire that’s hip to today’s culture. He’s got access to all the sickest clubs and he doesn’t pronounce “want” like “vunt” (how many times has a wayward vampyr told me he “vunts” to suck my blood, get a vocal coach already).
But naturally, Mr. Twilight starts disrespecting the long-established rules of the house, rules like “don’t constantly announce yourself as a vampire,” and tension begins to brew. Which leads to a lot of wacky situational comedy, made all the more wackier when the characters are all wearing capes and floating around in mid-air.
Watch the trailer below, thanks to The New Zealand Herald:
Like all those “hilariouses” imply, the film looks pretty funny (critics who’ve seen it, and also write for this site, offer the same perspective). But right now there aren’t a lot of ways to see What We Do in the Shadows if you live anywhere near North America. The film’s got a mid-June release date in its native New Zealand, and not much going on otherwise. But chances are it’ll hit VOD at some point, as a bare minimum.
Until then, remember to keep your stakes sharpened and to always respect a vampire’s chore wheel.