Film Review: What We Do in the Shadows

Name: What We Do in the Shadows
Release Date: 2014
Country: New Zealand
Director: Taika Waititi, Jemaine Clement
Writer: Taika Waititi, Jemaine Clement
Actor(s): Taika Waititi (Viago), Jemaine Clement (Vladislav) and Jonny Brugh (Deacon)

What We Do in the Shadows is one of the best mockumentary films around!! It has New Zealand’s finest comedians pulling out all the stops to deliver a Sundance favourite. With countless and countless amount of awards  to back it’s 7.6/10 rating on IMDB, What We Do in the Shadows is a must-see for all Vampire fans.


A lot of people had a problem with this film due to it’s ‘lack of plot’ and also it’s ‘poor cinematography’. I assume these people have not seen how a documentary. It’s filmed in a style of a documentary. Your not going to get anything over-the-top. Personally, I thought they nailed to Documentary look perfectly. I find that Australia and New Zealand have perfected the art of ‘the mockumentary’ thanks to these guys as well as comedy genius Chris Lilley (Summer Heights High, We Can Be Heroes).


There are tonnes and tonnes of plot twists that occur throughout the film to keep you on your toes. There is one completely heartbreaking scene in the film which I should warn you about. My housemate and I found ourselves sat in silence and sadness during this particular scene. However, don’t feel discouraged the film is certainly a comedy and the jokes come a plenty and they’re delivered thick and fast. You will find yourselves laughing out loud with some of the jokes and since the jokes are consistently funny, you’ll find your tummy will and your cheeks will ache from all the smiling. The below scene had me howling with laughter.

The acting is brilliant throughout and every character have their time to shine and each one gets their good chunk of jokes and comedy.  The mundane humour is delivered well by each actor, the acting can be seen as similar to the television series Flight of the Conchords which also stars Jemaine Clement. The cast of the film was well picked and Stu just steals the show! Brilliant acting from…Stu. My favourite characters include Viago (played by Taika Waititi, who is the director of the upcoming Thor: Ragnarok). Viago is such a sweet cinnamon roll! There are also werewolves in the film!! They’re only in it for maybe 5 minutes max but they steal each scene their in. I happen to have found out (whilst researching for this article) that the werewolves are to have their own spin-off movie titled ‘We’re Wolves’, which is reference to their saying ‘We’re Werewolves not swearwolves’. I cannot wait for the spin-off to come out.


One thing I need to highlight is that the special effects are second to none. Nothing too over-the-top but for very well done, from them morphing into bats to the werewolves burning rage turning them into werewolves. Check out the scene below. It’s so subtle but adds so much.

If you need to get over this week, and let’s be honest I think we all do, then this film will be a great escapism. Such a funny, uplifting film.