This Big Brother style documentary of four centuries-old vampires living together in a flatshare in New Zealand is just so hilarious, it made me laugh out loud so many times I can’t even keep track!
The so-called “mockumentary” starts with 379-year-old vampire Viago welcoming a camera team into his spooky home and showing them all around the flat he shares with fellow vampire flatmates Vladislav (869 years), Deacon (183 years) and Petyr (8,000 years, who lives in the basement). After waking all his flatmates with a hilarious “waky, waky” call, Viago gathers them downstairs for a flat meeting, in which he complains that Deacon didn’t wash his dishes in 5 years.
We then follow the group on their day-to-day, or rather night-to-night adventures: from epic nights out in Wellington and their search for victims to feast on to the relationships with their “servants”, werewolves and newly created vampire Nick.
The producers and directors of this film are all from New Zealand, so the setting was their favourite home Island.
New Zealand’s capital Wellington is the place to be, baby! Certainly for vampires. We see a lot of the city centre, not famously known for its beauty, but nevertheless a great glimpse into “the nightlife” down under!
All along, Viago, a former 17th century dandy, comes across as the most organized and most caring one of the vampire bunch. His mission: Keeping everyone happy, including his victims in their final hours.
One of the best features of this film are the various accents: From Viago’s German accent to the typical New Zealand accent of Nick or the Eastern European ones of Deacon and Vladislav (I think the similarities of the latter and Dracula are kind of on purpose).
Actor, co-director, writer and producer Taika Waititi imitates his character’s German accent so well that I almost believed he was actually German or Austrian. It was only when he speaks to one of his former “servants” in German via a skype call, I could hear that he is not a native German speaker.
Since I have seen it for the first time at the cinema, I watched What We Do in the Shadows several times on DVD, which comes with several equally funny bonuses!
My final verdict: Throw in some awkward reality TV moments and some serious Kiwi style self-ironic humour and you will get a refreshingly entertaining indie comedy!
***** 5 out of 5 stars