Tyler threw us a curveball and broke his string of unrelated shorts by showing a completely related short this time…since the feature film was a production comprising at least half of the Flight Of The Conchords folks, he pulled out a FOTC skit called “Foux du fa fa”.  Enjoy!


But the meat of the night, of course was What We Do In The Shadows, a 2014 mockumentary directed by Jemaine Clement (Vladislav, and of FOTC fame) and Taika Waititi (Viago, and not associated with FOTC to my knowledge).

Emphasis on “vamp”

As with most mockumentaries, the plot of What We Do In The Shadows is relatively thin.  The premise is that there’s a camera crew who has been given permission to film a group of New Zealand vampires (armed with holy water and crucifixes) over the course of several months.  The three main vampires, at least to start, are: Viago (left), an obsessive neat freak who came to New Zealand chasing after the love of a human girl; Vladislav (right), who is obsessed with a vampire ex-girfriend he calls The Beast and has the movie’s best line, which is in regards to a sandwich; Deacon (center) who is the only one currently to have a familiar (Jackie, who brings victims and tries to help the vampires adjust to the modern age in exchange for an ever-deferred promise to be turned into a vampire herself), and who was himself originally turned into a vampire by Petyr.

When 8000 years old you reach, look as good you will not!

Petyr also lives with the trio (in the basement) but as he’s 8000 years old he doesn’t have to do any household chores, and he doesn’t get out of his coffin much.

You’d think after several hundred years he’d know how to not hit an artery.

One night, Deacon’s familiar brings over a pair of victims.  One becomes vampire dinner.  The other, Nick, appears to escape the vampires’ house, before being ambushed in the garden by Petyr.

I think I saw this guy performing at an airport once…

Nick, however, shows up a few weeks later, as Petyr (as is apparently his wont) didn’t kill him, he converted him.  Now immortal and trying to learn the undead ropes, Nick tries to fit in with the vampire crew, but it’s a bit of a rough go as he’s kind of a jerk.  Case in point, when they are out at night, cruising the town, Nick has an obsession with telling people that he’s a vampire.  One responds sarcastically that he’s a vampire hunter…and it turns out he is.  This of course ends up with the vampire hunter finding our heroes’ home, sneaking in, and killing Petyr, dying in the process.  It’s OK for the audience, Petyr wasn’t much of a character anyway, but still the vampires take this pretty tough and indefinitely kick Nick out of the house.

Vladislav is just kidding – nobody would ever dine on Stu, they like him too much!

They don’t kick out Stu, however, Nick’s friend whom he brought around and whom the vampires like quite a bit more than their newest cohort.  Stu works in IT and seems to not mind one bit about being friends with the undead, and, well, just look at that face!  So Stu is welcome back whenever.

Our main crew and Nick finally come face to face again at the annual undead ball.  Nick, yet again, has managed to commit a few faux pas.  First off, he has turned Deacon’s old familiar Jackie into a vampire, which was pretty rude considering that Deacon was still getting a lot of good work out of her.  And second, Nick has totally misinterpreted the “plus one” on the ball invitation and brought along Stu.  Despite the fact that our film cohort find Stu cuddly and inedible, the remainder of the vampires at the ball, once finding out that Stu is not numbered among the undead, intend to pull a two-birds-one-stone thing and get him for trespassing and dinner at the same time.  This leads to a confrontation between Vladislav and The Beast, and in the end our heroes (plus Nick) escape with Stu intact.  But not for long.

We’re werewolves, not swear-wolves!

Unfortunately, after leaving the party the crew come (for the second time) upon a group of werewolves with who they have a hostile rivalry, and this time it’s a full moon, and things go badly not only for a couple of members of the camera crew, but also for Stu, who initially is apparently killed.

It’s OK, though, because Stu survives after all, instead only being turned into a werewolf for his trouble.  And, since he’s such a well-liked guy, he is able to create a détente between his new crew of lycanthropes and his old vampire buddies.  And with new friendships in hand, everybody lives happily ever after.  Or, well, at least through the credits. Who knows what horrors 2015 will bring.  Hopefully it’s not like 1915 was for the Brits in the Great War.  I mean, I’m reading Churchill, and dang it, the British really blew just about the entire year of 1915, what with Lord Kitchener’s vacillations about troop commitments and political infighting and regime change turning an opportunity to command the Eastern Front and bring the Balkans into the war on their side by quickly seizing control of the ill-defended Gallipoli peninsula into a complete fustercluck.  I mean, not that that has anything at all to do with this movie, but it was exactly 100 years earlier so I thought maybe it might be relevant.  Yeah, probably not so much.

Anyway, if you want a detailed and well-thought-out plot this film (and indeed most if not all mockumentaries) are not for you.  If you want an hour and a half of laughs, this film will pretty much deliver.  It knows what it is, it’s good at what it is, and it ought to be, considering that apparently about 120 hours of footage were cut down to make the film.  I mean, even *I* can be pretty entertaining if you only show the best 1.3% of me.