After the hysterically funny and captivating roller coaster that was Hunt for the Wilderpeople, Taika Waititi definitely was fixed on my radar. Just this week, I've seen his debut on features. On this day, I decided to check the only one of his movies I haven't watched yet.
What We do in the Shadows without knowing it was a movie from the same guy as Wilderpeople. Or I think she didn't know (I'm not trusting my memory these days. Well, I better say never, actually, but this long period of time stuck at home is wrecking my perception of things). Well, it was then with great expectations (oh dread) that I reached Taika's take on vampires with Fla's sister.
What have I told you about great expectations (Dickens warned us about it, but we didn't hear carefully enough)? From the beginning, I had a feeling of detachment from what I was seeing. Yes, it is funny, the references are great and so. Actually, it is a work of genius, but it didn't get me as I would think it at first. Waititi is so good, his partnership with Jemaine Clement (the same from Eagle vs Shark). I just imagine how fun the shooting was. They obviously have a great time together, both having an incredible amount of references from pop culture.
The opening sequence is so, so good, it is already among my favorite.
Waititi and Clemaine's take on vampires is impeccable, to say the truth. Despite all the hype of Twilight some years ago (more than a decade!), the Stephenie Meyer's vampires are not the biggest hit here. Vampires that will stay forever with us are the stars: Bela Lugosi, Gary Oldman's Dracula, the dandies from Interview with The Vampire and, of course, Nosferatu - I loved Petyr. I love them all, actually, and it intrigues me why I couldn't fall for this movie at first sight. It was a rational relationship, as a way to say. I could observe how good it was, but wasn't feeling this way.
A funny fact: I had a copy in German, and it wasn't translated. I wasn't sure if it was intentional or not. It reminded me the time, at 1993, when a friend I were researching vampire films for a dissertation to a History of Religions class, and the only copy of Nosteratu available was at a German language centre, and it had no translated subtitles. It felt like karma :) However, after Mari left at the middle of the movie, I decided resort to Netflix, and then I could follow all the lines I had missed before. From this point on, the movie made more sense for me, and I was able to enjoy it better.
Seriously, this movie is really good. A proof of how nerds are the best in the whole world. I'm just an amateur nerd, and I'm not sure if I can include myself when I say nerds will definitely save the world. They're our only hope, and filmmakers like Waititi and Clemaine show us just how true it is.
|What we do in the Shadows. Directed ans written by Taika Waititi and Jemaine|
Clement. Cast: Taika Waititi, Jemaine Clement, Cori Conzalez-Macuer. New
Zealand/USA, 2014, Dolby Digital, Color/Black and White, 86 min.