What We Do in the Shadows (2014)
Jemaine Clement, Taika Waititi
Taika Waititi, Jemaine Clement
Four vampires of various ages try to flat-share in Wellington.
What We Do in the Shadows is a mock-documentary/comedy about four vampires trying to get along in modern New Zealand.
You probably already know everything you need to know about it. There's the documentary camera crew coming into their lives, there's the awkwardness of being recorded, the glances to camera and the self-aware editing style which we've been experiencing since Spinal Tap.
Co-directors Jemaine Clement (he of Flight of the Conchords fame) andTaika Waititifirst made a version of this story in a 2006 short and seem to be relishing the chance to bring it to the big screen. There are a handful of fun special effects moments and plenty of off the cuff remarks and ad-libbed exchanges.
Your mileage with the film will very much depend on how engaging you find the kind of Kiwi humourfrom the likes of the Conchords. Actual gags are mostly avoided in favour of supposedly naturalistic comments and remarks. That sometimes works really well (Clement has the best lines and delivery) but can also pass without a giggle.
The horror elements are fairly light but the film does have some fun with genre stereotypes with the appearance of a group of werewolves, led by the Conchords'Rhys Darby, pulling down some of the best laughs.
If you're a fan of mock-documentaries and uncomfortable comedy you'll likely have some fun with What We Do in the Shadows but for everyone else - especially those with no interest in the genres it lampoons - you might wonder what all the fuss is about.